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We usually have mutliple projects running every year. Projects actively recruiting for participants are announced on our social media pages. 

Information about ongoing projects, and reports from complete projects can be found below.

Let's talk about infant sleep -- exploring the feasibility of baby bed boxes in UK

Final Report

Read final report

Baby lying in a transparent plastic box

Intervention materials

View intervention materials

The ESSaM Project (Evaluation of Sleep Safety Materials)

In 2018 Lullaby Trust, UNICEF UK BFI, and Basis (Baby Sleep Info Source) collaborated to design and co-brand new ‘Safer Sleep for Babies’ materials for use by UK health professionals and parents. These were endorsed by Public Health England and launched during Safer Sleep Week March 2019. 

We had intended to evaluate the impact of these materials by formally seeking feedback from professionals and parents in 2020, but a pandemic got in the way. Now, in 2022, the ESSaM project has been set up to find out how we are discussing sleep safety with UK families. This project will compare feedback from health professionals and parents who do and don’t use the ‘Safer Sleep for Babies’ materials, to help us understand whether the new materials are helpful and what changes might need to be made to them. 

Status: Recruitment open



County Durham SUDI Prevention ProjectLogos

This project will co-produce, pilot, evaluate and disseminate learning from multi-agency working training and implementation programme for SUDI prevention in County Durham with local authority public health leads, vulnerable and low-income family facing services, local Child Death Overview Panel (CDOP), key NHS staff, and third sector partners.

Status: Study set-up



Sleep, Baby & You 

Sleep, Baby & You is a new approach for supporting parents with sleep for themselves and their babies. The programme provides tools and training for practitioners and resources for parents that have been field-tested in Newcastle Northumbria, Hartlepool & Derbyshire NHS Trusts. This intervention package is now the focus of a large NIHR funding application for conducting a pragmatic randomised trial. Here we are collaborating with Prof Nick Embleton and colleagues at Newcastle upon Tyne NHS Trust, Dr Eugene Tang and colleagues in Newcastle Primary Care Trust, the Newcastle Clinical Trials Unit, North East NHS Research Design Service, and colleagues in health behaviour and health economics at Newcastle University. 

Sleep, Baby & You is an adaptation of the Possums Sleep Program (Brisbane, Australia) written by Dr Koa Whittingham (University of Queensland) and Dr Pamela Douglas (Possums Education). Sleep, Baby & You has been developed for use in the UK by Professor Helen Ball & Dr Catherine Taylor (Durham University Durham Infancy and Sleep Centre) and Dr Pam Douglas (Possums Education). Artwork has been created by LDi Studios, Sunderland, UK. Funding for the development of Sleep, Baby & You has been provided by an ESRC Impact Acceleration Award to Professor Helen Ball and Durham University 

This project is complete and the Sleep, Baby and You practitioner training is now available, please visit this page for more information


The Swaddle Sleep Study Swaddle Sleep Study logo

We are interested in the effects swaddling has upon the wellbeing of breastfed babies’ with special interest in their sleep and feeding behaviour. We are looking at exclusively breastfed participants who are up to 4 months old (and their mums!) who have never been swaddled. Swaddling is the wrapping of a baby so that arms are restrained.  

Status: Project complete



Postnatal Infant Care (PInC) Trial 

We are trying to find out how parents care for their babies in Newcastle Birthing Centre and how we can make it easier for parents to care for their babies after birth. 

Parents who sign up for the study and give birth in Newcastle Birthing Centre will be provided either a standalone cot or an in-bed cot. We would then like to record video and sound of parent to understand how parents look after their babies with these different cot types. 

At the time of enrolment into the project your must be eligible to give birth to your first baby in Newcastle Birthing Centre and you must be intending to try and breastfeed your baby after birth. If you have not decided where you will give birth yet, that doesn’t matter, you can still sign up 

Recruitment complete – analysis in progress 

Contact: / 07398122110



Third-Stage of Labour (ThiStL) Third-Stage of Labour logo

The Third Stage of Labour (ThiStL) Study is an exploratory study of care during the third stage of labour (when the placenta is expelled), which will involve interviews and surveys. The primary aim of this project is to understand why and how decisions are made around third stage of labour care for women experiencing low-risk pregnancies and labours in a midwife-led unit. This research will take place in the Newcastle Birthing Centre, and will account for multiple viewpoints and experiences, including those of pregnant women and postpartum mothers, and of midwives.

This study is the PhD project of Michele Freed at Durham University.

Status: Recruitment complete - analysis in progress