SHOCKED colleagues were left running for towels and hot water when expectant mum Dawn Kierans went into labour in a local shop.
But it all ended well when she gave birth to her third daughter, Paige, in the back of her workplace in Bolton Square, Drogheda.
The dramatic arrival at Deegan Hair and Beauty Supplies took everyone by surprise, not least some customers who helped deliver the new baby. WHEN LITTLE Paige Fay Britton decided to make her entry into the world three weeks early, at least she chose a place with plenty of towels, hot water and even scissors!
But this was no hospital, as mum Dawn Kierans gave birth to her third daughter in the back of her workplace in Bolton Square, Drogheda.
The dramatic arrival at Deegan Hair and Beauty Supplies took everyone by surprise last Monday, not least her colleagues and the customers who helped deliver the new baby.
' There was just no stopping her when she decided to arrive,' said mum Dawn, recovering in the Knockbrack Close home she shares with partner Mal Britton.
' She's absolutely gorgeous, and even though she shocked us all, I'm just glad she's healthy after all that.'
The unscheduled appearance began as Dawn began another day as usual in the trade salon supply store where she has worked for seven years.
Her colleague Stephen Deegan takes up the story.
'She was going on maternity leave that Friday three weeks before her due date, so when she began to get pains around 10.30am, she just said they must be nothing,' explains the manager.
' The next thing I knew was she said "I think the baby's coming" and the rest is all a blur.'
While a customer called Caroline Lynch, who is also expecting a baby, brought Dawn into the back of the store, Stephen called her partner Mal and her dad Tony, who arrived in minutes.
'We weren't sure if she needed to go the hospital yet, and even her sister ran up from Dunnes Stores to see how she was doing, and by 10.50am, it was clear she needed an ambulance,' adds Stephen, who says it took him a few days to get over the shock!
In fact, by the time the emergency crew arrived ten minutes, little Paige, who weighted just 5lbs, was in her mother's arms.
'She certainly took us all by surprise, but thankfully all went well, and even Mal was there to cut the cord, as the store had all the right equipment,' says dad Tony, who lives in Greenlanes with wife Joan.
'All Dawn was worried about was she had made a mess in the shop, but even one of the customers Jean went straight in and had the place gleaming in no time, and with girls coming in from the chemist next door with pain killers, and the baby wrapped in Deegan's towels, it was a real community effort.'
Mum, dad and of course baby are all doing well after the shaky start.
'We were blessed as the cord was wrapped round her neck when she came out, but thankfully she is flying now,' adds Dawn.
'I have two other girls, Kelsy (9) and Brooke (2), so we're all delighted to her safely home with us now.'