Wicker baby basket given to a young mother in 1953 has now been slept in by nearly FORTY newborns from the same family – travelling 4,000 miles around the UK in the process (and it’s still in PERFECT condition)
- Emma Hart was given the basket in 1953 after moving to Queensferry, Scotland
- Since then it has moved around to Leeds and Portsmouth and held 38 babies
- Current occupant is Willow Abbiss, the granddaughter of first baby Christine
A moses basket that has been in the same family for four generations has now been slept in by nearly 40 newborns – and travelled 4,000 miles around the UK in the process.
The wicker crib was originally a second-hand donation to new mum Emma Hart in 1953 when money was tight in post-war Britain.
It has since been passed between relatives as far afield as Edinburgh in Scotland and Portsmouth on the south coast of England.
The cradle – which has held 17 girls and 19 boys, including a set of twin boys – remains in perfect condition despite never being repaired or having had anything more than a wipe-down.
Christine Teal, 65, from Leeds, is the daughter of Emma Hart and her husband Amrose and the first baby to use the basket, she says it has ‘created a great bond and keep us connected to each other – regardless of how far apart we are’.
Since Christine herself was swaddled in the basket as a baby, it has been passed between relatives across the UK from Scotland to Portsmouth on the south coast of England, and is now a bed for little Willow Abbiss, who was born in August this year.
Despite being used by four different generations of the same family, the crib has stayed in immaculate condition and has never been painted or broken
The baby in the basket at the moment is Willow Abbiss, Christine’s granddaughter (and great-great-great granddaughter of the basket’s original parents, Emma and Ambrose)
Emma Hart, pictured left in her youth and right in 1990, was given a second-hand moses basket in 1993. That same crib has now nurtured 17 girls and 19 boys and travelled 4,000 miles across the UK
As a baby Christine snoozed in the basket after her mum Emma was given it when she returned to the family’s home town of South Queensferry, near Edinburgh, from St Helen’s in Merseyside
Christine said:‘I have an older brother and sister and I suppose my parents thought their family was complete, so when they moved back to Scotland they didn’t take much.
‘When my mum was pregnant with me she had to start from scratch so pretty much everything was donated.
‘My mum then held on to everything and it was used for my two younger sisters, Dorothy and Pauline.’
‘Life will always be alright, you know that’: Touching…
Father-of-four who told his wife having a baby was ‘easy’…
Share this article
From there the Moses basket was used by the next generation, when it was handed to Christine’s elder siblings, Keith and Florence, to be used for the six children they had between them.
By this time the basket had began its move to England after Christine met her Yorkshire husband while he was based in Rosyth, Scotland, with the Navy.
When he moved to Portsmouth with the Navy, Christine went to live with his family in Leeds.
Three of Emma’s children, Christine Teal, Dorothy and Pauline were all kept in the basket. Then Christine used the basket for her own children, Julie (pictured in 1971) and Jamie
The basket travelled from South Queensferry, near Edinburgh, to various places in England including Leeds and Portsmouth. Pictured: Steven Hart in 1984 (left) and Jordan Berry in 1992
It took until the third generation of babies using the crib until the idea of it being a real family heirloom kicked in. Pictured: Bradley Hodgson in 1998
It was then used by Christine’s own children, Julie and Jamie, and her younger sisters’ children.
Christine said: ‘At this point we weren’t even thinking it was a family heirloom, it was just another pregnancy in the family and saying, “oooh, we’ve got the Moses basket you can have.”‘
Before long the crib was being used by a third generation and the idea of it being a real family heirloom kicked in.
Christine said: ‘By the third generation of babies, it then became a requirement that any babies in our lineage had to be in the basket – it was a lovely thing we were doing.
‘We have a little book now where each and every baby is detailed.
‘We now make sure that every baby is photographed in the basket – before then we didn’t bother with photos as much.
‘Yes, we have pictures of each baby, but they’re not always in the basket, you have to remember that babies are in the basket for a relatively short amount of time.’
As the crib was being passed forwards and backwards to England, each careful owner might add their own extra touch of making their own or buying pretty bedding.
Pictured: Christine Teal, the first baby to use the crib, with the basket’s current occupant, her granddaughter Willow
Christine said: ‘We have a little book now where each and every baby is detailed. We now make sure that every baby is photographed in the basket – before then we didn’t bother with photos as much.’ Pictured: Twins Kieran and Joshua Hodgson in 2000, and Lewis Hart in 2003
As the crib was being passed forwards and backwards to England, each careful owner might add their own extra touch of making their own or buying pretty bedding. Pictured: Jodie Hodgson in 2004
For that reason the crib has always stayed in immaculate condition.
‘Nobody has ever painted it or broken it. We all treat the moses with the utmost respect. It is now precious to us,’ said Christine.
‘This has unintentionally become a family tradition originating from our mum.
‘Mum and Dad both died over 20 years ago now, but I think my mum would be immensely proud of what we are doing.
‘The basket has created a great bond and keeps us connected to each other, regardless of how far apart we are.’
Only two of babies in the family have not slept in the basket because they were born at the same time as other babies already in it.
The first fourth generation baby was baby Quinn Simpson, who was born in October last year in Portsmouth. He is is the great-great grandson of Keith, Christine’s brother.
Willow’s mother Leanne Abbiss, pictured, said: ‘I feel honoured to be able to pass on this wonderful family tradition and it is a lovely way for us all to be connected to each other, to know that we are all part of this family and that we are all included’
Only two of babies in the family have not slept in the basket because they were born at the same time as other babies already in it. Pictured: Leo West in 2013 (left), and Poppy Abbiss in 2014
Christine added: ‘Mum and Dad both died over 20 years ago now, but I think my mum would be immensely proud of what we are doing. The basket has created a great bond and keeps us connected to each other, regardless of how far apart we are.’ Pictured: Quinn Simpson in 2017, the first of the fourth generation of babies to lie in the crib
He would be the great-great-great grandson of original parents, Emma and Ambrose.
The baby in the basket at the moment is Willow Abbiss, Christine’s granddaughter, and lives in Leeds.
Her parents are glazier Paul, Christine’s son, and Leanne. His four daughters have all been in the basket.
Hairdresser Leanne, 36, said: ‘At first I thought it a little odd when I was told I had to have an old family heirloom for the girls, but it is actually really lovely.
‘I feel honoured to be able to pass on this wonderful family tradition and it is a lovely way for us all to be connected to each other, to know that we are all part of this family and that we are all included.
‘The way that this tradition is going I’m thinking the Moses basket will still be in the family to be used by our daughters.’
Source: Read Full Article