Plymouth leisure sites now breastfeeding friendly

Plymouth Life Centre is one of a number of sites that is now Breastfeeding Friendly.

Plymouth Life Centre is one of a number of sites that is now Breastfeeding Friendly.

Plymouth is moving a step closer to being a Breastfeeding Friendly city after all of its Everyone Active leisure centres are now signed up to the Plymouth Breastfeeding Kite Mark Scheme.

Now all Everyone Active sites in the city – including the iconic Plymouth Life Centre – are officially Breastfeeding Friendly.

The Livewell Southwest initiative commissioned by Plymouth City Council is being delivered as part of Plymouth’s Breastfeeding Strategy Group, alongside other key partners, Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust, The University of Plymouth and NHS Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group.

The Plymouth Breastfeeding friendly Kite mark scheme, enables mothers to recognise a venue where she knows she can breastfeed her baby with confidence, in a welcoming environment, and with a positive attitude from all the staff who work there.

The initiative is being led locally by Plymouth’s Breastfeeding Strategy Group, of which Plymouth City Council as public health lead is a key partner, alongside Livewell South West and NHS Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group.

Councillor Ian Tuffin, Cabinet Member for Health, Adult Social Care and Public Health for Plymouth City Council, said: “We are working with local partners in the health service and community to increase breastfeeding rates in Plymouth and towards Breastfeeding Friendly City status.

“There are so many health benefits to breastfeeding for both mums and babies and we want to make it as easy as possible for people to be able to breastfeed in the city.”

David Greenwood, Contract Manager for Everyone Active, said: We offer a huge range of activities for mums and children at our leisure centres in Plymouth, so we are delighted to support this initiative at all of our sites in Plymouth, and to work with Plymouth City Council and all the other local partners to help make the city more Baby Friendly.”

Jan Potter, Acting Head of Health Improvement for Livewell Southwest, said: “We now have nearly 50 local Plymouth businesses signed up to the Livewell Southwest Kite mark scheme. Mums in Plymouth are able to easily recognise facilities where they can feel confident and welcomed to breastfeed their baby. We want as many babies as possible to benefit from receiving breastmilk, and enjoying a close, loving experience with their mum for as long as possible.”

Benefits of breastfeeding include:

Benefits for baby

  • Breastmilk gives your baby all the nutrients she needs
  • Breastmilk is easy for your baby to digest
  • Breastfeeding helps protect your baby from ear, tummy and urinary infections by passing on the mother’s antibodies
  • Breastfeeding helps mother and baby to bond both physically and emotionally
  • Breastfed babies are less likely to develop childhood diabetes or become obese in later life
  • Breastfed babies are less likely to suffer from asthma or eczema
  • Breastmilk is available at all times, and is warm, clean and free
  • Breastfed babies benefit from improved brain development Benefits for Mum
  • Breastfeeding mothers have a reduced risk of developing ovarian and breast cancers
  • Breastfeeding mothers are less likely to suffer from weak bones in later life
  • Breastfeeding helps the uterus to contract faster
  • Breastfeeding can help delay the return of your periods
  • Breastfeeding uses up at least 500 calories every day
  • Breastfeeding gives you a special intimate time with your baby
  • Breastfeeding gives you and your baby time to get to know each other As well as getting you and your baby off to the best possible start, you are also helping the environment too:-
  • Breastmilk does not need to be warmed up, no kettles to boil
  • Breastmilk does not need to be packaged or labelled
  • Breastmilk does not need to be transported miles to reach the consumer

More information on the benefits of breastfeeding are available here:

More information on UNICEF’s Baby Friendly initiative is available here:

A list of Breastfeeding Friendly sites in Plymouth is available here:

If you work for an organisation in Plymouth and want to find out how you can become Breastfeeding Friendly contact 01752 437177 or