‘Baby Seafield’ inspires ‘cool’ cot for bereaved parents

Margaret Halliday with one of the baby funeral gowns she makes for grieving parents. Picture: Ian Georgeson
Margaret Halliday with one of the baby funeral gowns she makes for grieving parents. Picture: Ian Georgeson
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A tragic mystery baby is helping to give grieving parents precious extra time with their stillborn and lost children.

The six-week-old baby boy was found wrapped in a blanket on an old railway path in Seafield in July 2013. His family has never been traced and his identity remains a mystery.

He was eventually laid to rest at a heartbreaking funeral service at Seafield Cemetery last year.

Now a charity which provided a funeral gown for the unknown tot has raised money to buy a “cuddle cot” in his memory.

The special cots keep babies cool so parents can make the most of the brief time they have with their little one. The cots mean they can take their baby home and create special memories they might otherwise never have had.

Margaret Halliday, of Carrick Knowe, who makes babies’ funeral outfits from donated wedding dresses for charity Angel Wings, and founder Michaela Street, presented the cool cot to Co-operative Funeral Care in Tranent yesterday.

It is the second cuddle cot presented in Baby Seafield’s’ memory. Thomas Marin funeral directors in St Mary’s Street, Edinburgh, received one from the charity earlier this year.

Margaret, 67, began making funeral gowns for babies from donated wedding dresses after retiring from her job as a seamstress with Aitken & Niven.

She is now the organisation’s head seamstress. Last month alone her outfits were used to dress more than 100 babies across Scotland.

Angel Wings founder Michaela Street said the cuddle cot presentation was particularly special.

“It’s very special and very emotional for Margaret. She made beautiful clothing for Baby Seafield and he has become very special to her,” she said.

“She wanted to do more in his memory. Special fundraising was set up so we could raise money for a cuddle cot, which is a really special piece of equipment.”

The discovery of Baby Seafield touched the hearts of people across Scotland. He was found by a dog walker on a path next to Seafield Crematorium wrapped in a blanket, which had a picture of an elephant with an balloon tied to its trunk.

DNA tests on the child – thought to be around six weeks old – drew a blank as to who his mother may be, as did extensive public appeals.

Two years later, Police Scotland announced a funeral was to be held for the baby and members of the public were invited to attend.

Hundreds of people turned out for the short graveside ceremony, which saw a lone piper play Amazing Grace as a tiny white coffin was carried.

Rev Erica Wishart told mourners: “This tiny baby is never going to have the chance to grow up and live his life.

“We are here to say goodbye to this wee one, with the dignity and respect that he deserves.”