Anti-abortion pickets in Hatfield

PUBLISHED: 16:01 24 November 2016 | UPDATED: 16:10 24 November 2016

Women pray outside Wrafton House Surgery.

Women pray outside Wrafton House Surgery.

Danny Loo Photography 2016

Activists picketing outside a Hatfield surgery insisted they are merely trying to "help" pregnant women considering abortions.

A spokeswoman for a group of women outside Wrafton House in Wellfield Road on Thursday told the Welwyn Hatfield Times they represented Helpers UK, a registered charity that describes itself as a “pro-life prayer group.”

The spokeswoman, who did not want to be named but claimed to lived “locally”, said abortions were regularly performed at the surgery on Thursdays.

She said: “It is not a protest. We do not push our views on anyone.

“We are here to help women who are being pushed into abortion.

“I was going to have an abortion once, but I got helped. We want to offer other women the same help.”

Although Roman Catholic herself and opposed to abortion on principle, she said the charity was supported by like-minded people of all faiths, and even atheists.

She said the group merely offered women entering the surgery a leaflet with advice on issues such as housing for young mothers.

The leaflet claims abortion can cause breast cancer and other medical problems, but reassures women “no judgements are made”.

The spokeswoman said many women the charity “helped” to become mothers were later very grateful, and the group hoped to maintain a presence every Thursday.

A member of surgery staff confirmed a room was sometimes hired by the British Pregnancy Advice Service, but said the pickets did not cause any problems.

She said: “They are pleasant to talk to, and they are not on our premises.”

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