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Baby born on Cornwall rescue helicopter celebrates first birthday with crew

Alicia MacDonald went into labour two weeks early while officiating at a wedding on the Isles of Scilly. Credit: ITV News West Country

A baby born mid-flight on a search and rescue helicopter has celebrated his first birthday with the crew who brought him into the world.

Baby Torran MacDonald was delivered two weeks earlier than expected on August 18 last year after his mother Alicia went into labour while officiating at a friend's wedding on the Isles of Scilly.

As there was no midwife on the islands, HM Coastguard picked up midwife Linda Benson from Treliske, Cornwall, before flying to the Isles of Scilly to collect the family.

They were then transported to a hospital on the mainland.

Torran (right) was born around 1,400ft over Penzance. Credit: ITV News West Country

However, Torran was born while 1,400 feet over Penzance - with help from Ms Benson and the helicopter crew.

Torran, his big sister Ferne and their parents Alicia and Sandy visited the base in Newquay, Cornwall, to reunite with the three crew members as well as the midwife.

Torran obviously didn't want to wait and he made his entrance to the world onboard the helicopter. We were safe and well and everyone was absolutely amazing but it was all a bit of a rush.

So we wanted to mark Torran's first birthday in a memorable way and what better than to visit the base and say a proper thanks to the fantastic Coastguard teams, midwife Linda and everyone involved. They'll always be an important part of our family.

– Alicia MacDonald, Torran's mother

The happy family returned to the base and had tea and cake with crew members Paul Forbes and Andy Batchelor, as well as Yogi Brunner, who was flying the helicopter that night.

Captain Mark Coupland, deputy search and rescue flight operations manager and chief pilot for the Newquay Coastguard helicopter, also joined the celebrations.

Alicia and Sandy MacDonald welcomed their baby boy with the help of midwife Linda Benson. Credit: Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust

This really was a rescue of the very best kind and we were delighted to help welcome Torran. It definitely gave all our helicopter teams and everyone at HM Coastguard a big lift!

We've kept in touch with Alicia and Sandy and we're absolutely delighted they wanted to come back and see us all.

While we don't expect to get thanked for our 24/7 coastal search and rescue work, it's really lovely when we do.

– Captain Mark Coupland