Medela UK has begun a search of the UK’s breastfeeding-friendly public hotspots, and early results put the popular restaurant chain at the top.
As National Breastfeeding Week approaches, Medela have been searching the UK to find the most welcoming public places for breastfeeding.
There’s been a lot of news coverage lately of restaurants and public places reacting negatively to breastfeeding mums, so Medela was eager to find those places that welcome breastfeeding with open arms.
The research, which is ongoing, is about giving mums the added confidence they may need when picking somewhere to stop and breastfeed. ‘We are often asked for tips when breastfeeding out and about’, says Sioned Hilton, Medela’s Lactation Consultant, ‘and although many women are quite rightly proud and confident when feeding their baby, others do feel self conscious. It is for these women we decided to start researching this area.’
The search has seen more than 300 restaurants and cafes being contacted across major cities in the UK. Lots of independent cafes came out on top, including This is Leaf café and Bold Street Café in Liverpool, Boston Tea Party in Bristol and The3 Herb Garden in Newcastle.
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Restaurant chain Pizza Express was a clear winner. The restaurant group demonstrated a remarkable level of support for breastfeeding mothers with faultless feedback from the staff the team spoke with.
The report was compiled following two calls to each venue on different occasions asking if it will be OK to breastfeed at their establishment. There was a high percentage of positive responses, however for some the reaction was that they would rather mother was covered up or that a toilet was available. Pizza Express staff all gave positive response with 100% of those we spoke with saying ‘oh absolutely, of course’.
Zoe Bowley, Pizza Express’ Operations Director, said: “We know that, when mums are negotiating so many new challenges, a warm welcome can make the biggest difference. Over the last 50 years, young families have grown up with us, and we hope that each new generation of mums knows that PizzaExpress will always welcome them with a friendly smile.”