As Consultant Obstetrician in senior clinical leadership roles, I have known Sheena for more than 20 years, in roles from matron midwife, through to Consultant Midwife, Head of Midwifery, and now Independent Midwifery Consultant. Whilst currently leading and influencing on a national and international stage, Sheena’s legacy in East Lancashire includes an ethos of partnership between midwives and obstetricians with well embedded midwifery led care and birth centres, service user involvement, and collaborative care for those women who need obstetric care during their pregnancies or childbirth.
In her current role, Sheena is using her influencing and persuasion skills to the benefit of many, promoting women centred maternity care as an (inter) national speaker and providing consultancy services to organisations who wish to improve their maternity services. Her approach is to work alongside people to inspire and motivate them to make the necessary changes by developing themselves as well as their services, and to believe in their ability to make the change. Her consultancy services are sought after by organisations across the country, but she still finds time to produce evidence based articles, books and blogs on childbirth topics, thus spreading her knowledge and expertise even further.
Sheena is an inspirational midwife, a role model not just for midwives now and in the future, but also for obstetricians, to learn, in her own words that ‘childbirth is not risk free, but it isn’t a risky business, safety depends on workplace culture, collaboration and respect’.
— Catharina Schram - Consultant Obstetrician
Sheena is a creative, inspirational, transformational leader, who consistently uses a hearts and minds approach to create change in ways that did not seem possible before she became engaged. She is a powerful role model, who leads people to see potential in themselves that they did not believe they had, and then to act on that potential in ways that have been, for some, life changing. She is an effective negotiator, and a tenacious advocate. The combination of her organisational, management and creative skills with her high levels of emotional intelligence makes her a force to be reckoned with
— Professor Soo Downe OBE

Sheena Byrom OBE

I am a freelance midwifery consultant, using the knowledge and skill I developed during an extensive midwifery career in the NHS.  I was one of the UK’s first consultant midwives, and as head of midwifery I successfully helped to lead the development of three birth centres in East Lancashire.  

As well as being an international speaker, I provide consultancy services to both NHS Trusts and to organisations globally; helping and supporting them to develop midwifery led services. I am involved in several charities related to midwifery, and with esteemed colleagues, I co-lead of the Midwifery Unit Network, an initiative which aims to support the development and success of midwifery units through connecting and sharing resources.  I am currently working on a new initiative with Anna Byrom, my midwife daughter, to support midwifery in the UK, and around the world. Come and check out our website Byrom and Byrom, from where we'll announce our next project! 

 

My midwifery memoirs, Catching Babies, is a Sunday Times bestseller, and my absolute passion is promoting normal physiological birth, and a positive childbirth experience for all women. I jointly edited The Roar Behind the Silence: why kindness, compassion and respect matter in maternity care with Professor Soo Downe OBE. This seminal book is being used globally as a resource to improve maternity services. Our new book, Squaring the Circle: researching normal birth in a technological world will be published in October 2017. 

I was awarded an OBE in 2011 for services to midwifery, and I received an Honorary Fellowship of the Royal College of Midwives in 2015. In 2016 I was delighted to receive an Honorary Doctorate from Bournemouth University. 

 
 

I actively lobby for maternity service improvements through several social media channels, and I am a member of the @WeMidwives team, running regular online chats for student midwives and midwives. I lecture nationally and internationally on midwifery and childbirth related topics, and the benefits of using social media. 

This website is personal, and does not reflect the position of any of the organisations I connect with. 

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