Tower Hamlets Baby Feeding Service

The Tower Hamlets Baby Feeding Service provides information and support for parents in Tower Hamlets during pregnancy and after they have had their baby. 

We currently provide support on the wards at The Royal London Hospital and via online support groups, telephone calls and video calls. There is also in-person feeding support available in the community. We are a team of baby feeding specialists who speak several languages including Bengali, Sylheti and Somali.

For updates on our service, please follow our team on Facebook or Twitter or visit the breastfeeding network.

Baby feeding support by phone or video call

We will call all Tower Hamlets parents when they are discharged from the hospital, birth centre or home birth team.

For support from 9am - 5pm, Monday to Friday, please call the baby feeding specialist who called you, or phone the team on 07961 609 626. Leave a message and we will call you back no later than the next working day. We will provide support whatever age your baby is.

Out of hours baby feeding support 

  • The National Breastfeeding Helpline:0300 100 0212
  • Bengali/Sylheti helpline:0300 456 2421
  • You can contact these services between 9.30am and 9.30pm, 7 days a week.

In-person baby feeding support 

Local in-person baby feeding support is available at Tower Hamlets Children’s Centre and Barkantine Birth Centre. Please call 07961 609 626 for more information.

Online antenatal breastfeeding classes

Visit our Eventbrite page to book onto one of our online breastfeeding antenatal workshops when you are 32 -34 weeks pregnant.

Online antenatal colostrum harvesting session

Visit our Eventbrite page to book onto one of our antenatal colostrum harvesting session when you are around 36 weeks. Information will be provided on how to express and store your colostrum to bring to the hospital when you go into labour.

This video may help.

Online baby feeding support group

Visit our Eventbrite page to book onto one of our postnatal online breastfeeding groups or email us.

Useful links

After a telephone consultation, we might direct you to some of these resources.

How to tell if breastfeeding is going well

Positioning and attachment

Other topics

The Barts Health tongue tie service is continuing. The baby feeding specialist will have up to date information and you can also call 020 3594 2592 or 07811 171 503.

Cup feeding 

This cup feeding video and the guidance below will help you to feed your baby.

Cup feeding is a method of feeding baby that has been around for a very long time. It should be used to feed a baby who is not yet taking the breast as it gives the baby a positive oral experience, the pleasure of taste and stimulates digestion. It allows the baby to control amount and rate of feed and may be less disruptive than bottle feeding. This may be used when needing to supplement a baby who is not effectively breastfeeding. It is seen as an interim clinical procedure rather than a normal feeding method.

1. Ensure the baby is awake
2. Use a small open cup e.g. lid of a feeding bottle, shot glass or egg cup.
3. Wrap the baby securely, to prevent the hands knocking the cup. Place
a napkin/bib under the chin.
4. Support the baby in an upright sitting position on your lap with baby's head supported while you have one hand behind his shoulders and neck, so that you are both comfortable.
5. Have the cup at least half full if possible.
6. Place the edge of the cup gently on baby’s lower lip
7. Direct the rim of the cup towards the corners of the upper lip and gums, with it gently touching /resting on the lower lip. Do not apply pressure on the lower lip.
8. The cup should be tipped so the milk is just touching the baby’s lips and the baby will lap it up like a pussycat. Do not pour the liquid in baby’s mouth.
9. It is important to maintain the level of the liquid as best as possible so baby can continually lap it up.
10. Leave the cup in the correct position during the feed. Do not keep removing it when the baby stops drinking. It is important to let the baby take as much as they need in their own time.

How to clean the cup

1. Wash in warm soapy water and rinse well
2. Sterilise using any available method
3. While in hospital, use a new cup for every feed