The big news on the baby front

Kate Silverton, Anna Boyd, Kasia Madera and Sophie van Brugen Kate Silverton, Anna Boyd, Kasia Madera and Sophie van Brugen

Remember how at one time every female weather presenter seemed to be pregnant?

One viewer even implored the BBC: 'Get Helen Willetts off before she explodes. The woman is clearly giving birth to a small village. If she turns sideways, the Midlands disappear.'

Fast forward a few years and for Kate Silverton the small number of negative comments she has received - 'always from men and along the lines of put those mammaries away' - is far outweighed by the cards and emails from people almost as delighted by her news as she is.

She happily displays her bump on camera and has talked to the press about her 'miracle baby', due in October, conceived after unsuccessful rounds of IVF. However, there are limits to such openness.

Cheese-shaped wedge

Start Quote

There is one camera shot in which I look huge - like a beached whale - but luckily they don't use it,”

End Quote Kasia Madera

'I've had requests to go public with the scan pictures, but no, that's private,' she reasons.

Maintaining a busy schedule throughout her pregnancy, she says: 'There haven't been any particular difficulties at work. The only thing that's different is that I bring in a cheese-shaped wedge to support my back.'

The presenter is among a group of friends and colleagues who work in News and are all expecting within weeks of each other.

The group includes Kasia Madera who presents BBC Newsday on World News. She works mainly nights, arriving at the office at 10pm, working to 4.30 or 5.30am.

Night shifts

'There is one camera shot in which I look huge - like a beached whale - but luckily they don't use it, and with the new format of Newsday I'm not even sure viewers can tell I'm pregnant,' she explains.

Already the mother of a three year old son, she says night shifts are hard but: 'Newsday is such a great programme and the team is extremely supportive.'

And despite the rigours of the job, and being pregnant, she still has the time and energy to renovate a flat.

Speaking of which, Alex Stanger, who presents the entertainment loop (online and on the red button), is due to move house only days before her due date.

'What was I thinking?' she laughs.

At least her current job isn't as demanding as the one she had while carrying her son Jack, now 18 months old.

'I was the main reporter on E24, which has since disappeared, and was running around all the time. It was shattering towards the end.'

Start Quote

Sometimes I felt terrible. I once threw up in a ditch before going on air.' ”

End Quote Sophie van Brugen
First timer

Sophie van Brugen, also an entertainment journalist and pregnant with her first child, is familiar with such challenges. 'I was doing lots of early lives [for BBC Breakfast] in January and February when sometimes I felt terrible. I once threw up in a ditch before going on air.'

Senior broadcast journalist Anna Boyd, another first timer, whose baby is due in October, says she has felt fine on the whole, but she too is pleased to be desk-bound, processing video for the news website as part of the on-demand team.

'I used to be a tv producer and miss going out filming but this job suits me better now I'm pregnant.'

The shifts aren't great, though: either 5.30am-3.30pm or 2pm-midnight. Then there's a three-hour round trip from her new home in Leighton Buzzard.

'Previously I lived in Shepherds Bush and cycled to work,' she explains.

But that's no longer an option, what with a big commute and a big bump.

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