WHILE many people were ringing in the new year with champagne and nibbles, one mum was welcoming a new arrival to her family.
Shaheen Codabaccus gave birth to her second child, Luqman Chowdee, at 5.17am on New Year's Day.
Six days later than expected, he was, by just a minute, the first baby born at Croydon University Hospital (CUH) this year.
Shaheen, 32, said: "He was overdue by six days so maybe he was just waiting for the new year.
"It was all very quick once it started: I just got some pain at about 11pm and went to the hospital at 3.30am."
Mum and son are now back at home in South Croydon where they have introduced Luqman to his sister Asiyah, 21 months.
Shaheen added: "He looks just like his sister: he has the same face she had when she was born, exactly the same."
Shaheen's husband Mamode Chowdee, 42, has returned to work after the holidays, while some of Shaheen's family have flown from her native Mauritius to help with her young charge.
Luqman was the first of four babies born on New Year's Day at CUH, all boys and all within an hour of each other. After Luqman at 5.17am, the others were born at 5.18am, 5.48am, and 6.10am.
Shaheen, whose first child was also born at CUH, added: "Even though it was early morning on New Year's Day, the staff were great."
The family had chosen the name Luqman, she explained, after the Islamic prophet.