Royal Brompton Hospital, London 2018

Royal Brompton Hospital was host to Holding Time from April- June 2018. Part of this exhibition is a specially commissioned breastfeeding portrait of Sabrina Byrne, mother of Isabelle, a hospital patient. You can read about the commission here

Sabrina is featured in the animated film of Holding Time. In this, Sabrina is shown administering the neccessary medicine for her child, before feeding.

“I just enjoyed sitting there getting lost in feeding her, which is why this holding time project appealed to me so much. I’m so happy to of been apart of it, it’s been an extremely hard time and taking part in this has been a pleasure and helped me personally”– Sabrina Byrne, May 2018

You can read Sabrina’s Mother Story here.

Part of the exhibition project was to show how the special support given to mothers of critically ill babies in wards like the Rose Ward, support mothers at the most difficult times, preserving their lactation so that they may begin or resume breastfeeding when their child is well enough.

You can hear more about the special provision for mothers of babies with heart defects in the interviews below.


Niamh is a Quality Improvement nurse at Royal Brompton hospital. She talks of the sorts of scenarios where mothers need breastfeeding support and how the hospital manages this across two departments.


Elizabeth is a Maternity Nurse at Royal Brompton hospital. She talks about the support the hospital offer to support breastfeeding amongst mothers on Rose ward and the benefits of breastfeeding to mother and babies who have heart conditions.


rb&hArts runs an innovative arts programme at Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust. It is designed to improve the clinical environment patient experience, and enhance the well-being of patients, visitors, staff and the local communities surrounding each hospital. The department manages a permanent collection, delivers bespoke visual arts commissions, and runs an innovative participatory arts programme, comprising music on the wards and workshops. rb&hArts engage over 5,000 people each year, often participating in the arts for the first time.
Support the rb&hArts programme: rb&hArts are supported by a range of trusts, including Royal Brompton & Harefield Hospitals Charity, as well as individual donors. They are always looking for volunteers that can help them fundraise or take part in activities to bring the healing power of the arts to more patients.
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