Breastfeeding is the most natural start to life for a baby and can have lifelong health benefits for both mother and baby. 


Breastfeeding protects the baby against ear and chest infections, stomach upsets, diarrhoea, asthma, eczema, allergies and even obesity. Breastfeeding mothers are less likely to develop breast and ovarian cancer and osteoporosis later in life.

Babies don’t need anything but breast milk for the first six months to provide all the necessary nutrition. Giving anything else will decrease the supply of breast milk and lessen the health benefits of breastfeeding.

Solids can be introduced alongside the usual milk feeds from six months, when the baby’s development shows they are ready to cope with solids well.

The Department of Health recommends breastfeeding for at least a year, as it continues to provide both significant nutrition and protection from illnesses.


During your home New Birth visit (between 7-14 days). your health visitor will discuss breastfeeding and this includes your baby’s feeding assessment. Attached below is the feeding assessment form used by Health Visitors, which provides a useful guide for parents as to what to expect when breastfeeding your baby, and what may potentially be a problem requiring further support:

Breastfeeding Assessment Form

Breastfeeding support

Many mothers find they need support with breastfeeding.  This can be anytime from getting started through to your child’s final breastfeeds.

There are several drop-in breastfeeding hubs across Lewisham where parents can access breastfeeding support.

This support is provided by health visiting and peer supporters who have been trained.  Please see the table below for the list of breastfeeding hubs.

Mothers are also welcome to attend during pregnancy and ask any questions they may have about feeding their baby, or as an opportunity to meet other mothers informally in your local area.


Mothers who are formula or mixed feeding their baby are also welcome to attend for advice and support.

“Carmella really helped us with latching and gave us some great tips and support” Breastfeeding mum, Downderry children’s centre”


If you are concerned about any aspects of your baby’s feeding firstly please contact your Health Visiting team – full details are in your red book, or can be found on the Contact Us page on this website.


Alternatively, you can contact Ade Olotu, Infant Feeding Lead on 0203 0493441 or you can email


If you would like to provide feedback regarding our breastfeeding support please complete this FFT form.

Breastfeeding hubs in Lewisham


There is plenty of telephone support for breastfeeding,


National Breastfeeding Helpline – 0300 100 0212, open 24 hrs a day every single day of the year, from 29.3.24


National Childbirth Trust (NCT) Helpline – 0300 330 0700, open every day from 8am – midnight, including Bank Holidays.


La Leche League National Helpline – 0345 1202918 open from 8am – 11pm, 365 days a year


You can also call your Health Visiting team to speak to the duty Health Visitor for support.  Our service is available except for Bank Holidays and weekends.  Please find your Health Visiting teams’ contact details under the ‘Contact Us’ page.


Monday1pm – 3pmDownderry Children’s Centre, Shroffold Road, Downham BR1 5PD – DROP IN. 
Tuesday1pm – 3pmBellingham Children’s Centre, 109 Randlesdown Road, SE6 3HB – DROP IN.
Wednesday10am – 12pmLee Health Centre, 2 Handen Road, SE12 8NP – DROP IN.
Wednesday12.15pm – 2.15pmThe Village, Corbett Library and Community Centre, Torridon Road, SE6 1RQ – DROP IN.
Thursday10am–12pmEvelyn Children’s Centre, 231 Grove Street, Deptford, SE8 3PZ – DROP IN. 

*Please note that we will be closed for breastfeeding support and development reviews on Thursday 4 July 2024.*

Thursday10am–12pmThe Leander Centre, Ship Street, Deptford, SE8 4DH – DROP IN.
Friday12pm–2pmQuaggy Breastfeeding Hub, Parkside Community Centre, Parkside Avenue, Lewisham, SE10 8GF (opposite Quaggy Children’s Centre)- DROP IN. £2 voluntary cost.
Friday1pm – 3pmLadywell Children’s Centre, 30 Rushey Mead, SE4 1JJ – DROP IN.

*Please note that from Friday 5th July the Ladywell Breastfeeding hub will be in the morning from 10am -12pm.*

Evelyn Parents ForumDeptford Park Play Club, 23 Scawen Road, Deptford, SE8 5AG
Waldron Health CentreAmersham Vale, New Cross, SE14 6LD
Telegraph Hill Play clubErlanger Road, SE14 5TY
Telegraph Hill CentrePepys Road, SE14 5TY
The Albany Arts Centre & CaféDouglas Way, Deptford SE8 4AG
Deli X156 Deptford High Street, SE8 3PQ
2000 Community Action Centre199-201 Grove Street, Deptford SE8 3PG
Amersham Vale PracticeWaldron Health Centre, New Cross, SE14 6LD
Vesta Road Surgery58 Vesta Road, New Cross, SE4 2NH
Little Lambs Pre-SchoolGood Shepherd Church Hall, Downham BR1 5EP
Arlo & Moe340 Brockley Road, Brockley SE4 2BT
Browns of Brockley5-6 Coulgate Street, Brockley, SE4 2RW
Pistachios in the ParkHillyfields, 10A Somerset Gardens, SE13 7JN
Apple Tree Community CaféGoldsmiths Community Centre, Castillon Rd, SE6 1QD
The Homestead CaféBeckenham Place Park, BR3 5BP
Oakview Family Practice190 Shroffold Road, BR1 5NJ
Step by Step Day NurseryBenden House, Monument Gardens, SE13 6PY
Novum Health PartnershipThe Primary Care Centre, Hawstead Rd, SE6 4JH
Cissy Wears212a Hither Green Lane, Hither Green, SE13 6RT
Arlo & Moe60 Springbank Road, Hither Green, SE13 6SN
Arts CaféManor Park Hither Green, SE13 5QZ
Pistachio’s in the ParkManor House Gardens, Old Rd, SE13 5TA
Bella Roma13 Lewis Grove, SE13 6BG
Blackheath Age Exchange11 Blackheath Village, SE3 9LA
Lewisham Toy LibraryShop 46 Molesworth Street, SE13 7EP
Brockley Road Surgery465-467 Brockley Road, Brockley SE4 2PJ
Ackroyd Community Centre42b Ackroyd Road, SE23 1DL
Little Pumpkins88 Woodyates Rd, Lee, SE12 9JH
La Ciabatta119 Rushey Green, SE6 4AA
Freds358 Brockley Road, SE4 2BY
Graces Day Nursery145 Perry Hill, Catford, SE6 4LP
Hillyfields Medical Group172 Adelaide Avenue, SE4 1JN
The Broadway Café12 Catford Broadway, SE6 4SP
Kaleidoscope32 Rushey Green, Catford, SE6 4JD
Kilmorie Children’s CentreKilmorie Primary School Kilmorie Rd, SE23 2SP
Aga’s Little Deli49a Dartmouth Road,. London SE23 3HN
Forest Hill PoolsDartmouth Rd, Forest Hill, SE23 3HZ
Pistachio’s in the Park47 Vicars Hill, London SE13 7JN
Archibalds Café164 Manor Lane, Hither Green, SE12 8LP
La Pizzeria Italiana LtdEros House, Brownhill Road, SE6 2EG
Saigon Foods24 Catford Broadway, SE6 4SN
Small Wonders Day Care89 Bromley Road, SE6 2UF
The Broadway Dental Practice23 Catford Broadway, SE6 4SN
Good Food DeliSandhurst Market, 7 Sandhurst Rd, SE6 1DL
Abbotshall Healthy Lifestyle CentreAbbotshall Road, Catford, SE6 1SQ
Corbett Community Centre & LibraryTorridon Road, SE6 1RQ
Park View Café32 Randlesdown Road, Bellingham, SE6 3BD
Bellingham Green GP Surgery24 Bellingham Green, Catford, SE6 3JB
La Delice Café38 Ladywell Road, Lewisham SE13 7UZ
Community WavesOld Town Hall, Catford Rd, SE6 4RU

Top tips for breastfeeding

  • Keep your baby close, with as much skin-to-skin contact as possible
  • Babies like to breastfeed often, some very often!  This does not mean that your milk supply is not enough.  Babies like some feeds to be ‘meals’ and others to be ‘snacks’, just like adults.
  • It is not possible to overfeed a breastfed baby.
  • Be sure to get the right latch – checking that your baby is attached correctly to the breast is crucial for comfortable and successful breastfeeding. If you’re feeling pain throughout the feed, your baby’s latch may not be correct. Remember CHIN:


Close and chin leading


Head free


In line


Nose to nipple

  • Feel reassured that your baby will be getting enough milk if they are feeding at least eight times in 24 hours and they have at least six wet and two dirty nappies daily (from one week old; before this, babies may feed more and have produce more urine and stools)
  • Always seek help if you have any concerns, especially if you have pain when your baby feeds.

Breastfeeding at study or work leaflet (DH)

Going back to study or work may be the first time you have been separated from your baby for long periods. Continuing to breastfeed helps to keep the close relationship you’ve built up, providing your baby with extra comfort and security for as long as you both want.

You don’t need to stop breastfeeding just because you’re returning to study or work. Many women find ways to continue breastfeeding their baby – and employers have certain obligations towards breastfeeding women.

The last section in this leaflet sets out how employers can make it easier for you to do so – show this leaflet to your employer.

Visit ACAS to find out more about pregnancy and maternity rights, as well as breastfeeding at work.

Further information

  • NHS breastfeeding website
  • Start 4 Life
  • National Childbirth Trust 0300 330 0700 (8am–midnight)
  • National Breastfeeding Helpline 0300 100 0212 (9.30am–9.30pm)
  • Association of Breastfeeding Mothers 0844 412 2949
  • Breastfeeding Network 0300 100 0210 (9.30am–9.30pm)
  • La Leche League 0845 120 2918
  • For information about drugs in breast milk, email

The ‘Baby buddy’ app, which you can download to your mobile phone, takes you through life with your baby, using interactive information and films.


24 hour advice via Start 4 Life: It’s available on:

  • Facebook Messenger
  • Amazon Alexa
  • Google Assistant

Breastfeeding at night

Becoming a parent is a very special time. Getting to know your new baby and learning how to care for her needs can be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life. However, it can also be challenging, especially when you are tired and your baby is wakeful and wanting to feed frequently during the night.

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