All in the delivery! Sisters give birth on April 1 - and it’s no joke

Sisters Kelly Bates and Nicola Hardy both gave birth on April 1. Cousins Raven Bates and Alex Oakle

Sisters Kelly Bates and Nicola Hardy both gave birth on April 1. Cousins Raven Bates and Alex Oakley are seen here content at home. exe 15 17TI 0644. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Sisters from Exmouth who both gave birth on April 1 had to convince family and friends they were not pulling a prank.

Sisters Kelly Bates and Nicola Hardy both gave birth on April 1. Cousins Raven Bates and Alex Oakle

Sisters Kelly Bates and Nicola Hardy both gave birth on April 1. Cousins Raven Bates and Alex Oakley are seen here content at home. exe 15 17TI 0644. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Kelly Bates and her younger sister Nicola Hardy gave birth to babies within hours of each other at Exeter’s maternity ward, with proud grandma Benadette Davies flitting between her daughters’ beds to welcome the new arrivals.

The sisters’ babies were due later on in April, a week apart, but both arrived early and within hours of each other.

Mum-of-three Kelly, aged 27, of West Down Lane, Littleham, who gave birth to daughter, Raven Ember Diana Bates, said hospital staff were amazed when the news of the sisters and newborns was revealed.

“They thought my mum was joking because it was April Fool’s Day,” she said.

Sisters Kelly Bates and Nicola Hardy both gave birth on April 1. Cousins Raven Bates and Alex Oakle

Sisters Kelly Bates and Nicola Hardy both gave birth on April 1. Cousins Raven Bates and Alex Oakley are seen here content at home. exe 15 17TI 0644. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant


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“Most of the family didn’t believe it either. They believed Raven was born, but thought Nicola was pulling a fast one.

“It was all a bit surreal for the first few days - they were both here. It all just happened at once.

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Kelly added: “Nicola and I have always been very close. It will be nice, the babies can grow up together.”

Mum-of-two Nicola, 22, of Dukes Crescent, Brixington, who gave birth to Alex Oakley, said her midwife was ‘really surprised’ to hear how sister Kelly was moments away down the corridor with newborn Raven.

“At first people thought it was a joke,” said Nicola. “We have always been close anyway, so it was amazing how we did something so big together - we spent so much time together during our pregnancies.”

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