THE grieving parents of a stillborn child have shared heartbreaking images of the tiny baby curled in the palm of their hand.

Emileen Clapp, 33, and her husband Nathan, were devastated when she delivered the couple's second child together just 16 weeks and three days into her pregnancy.

The baby was barely longer than Emileen's pinky finger when it was born on December 19.

And now the parents, from Chard, have bravely shared harrowing images of what would have been the family's fourth child, in an effort to try and support similar, bereaved families.

Emileen is set to shave her head at a big fundraising event in June - when the baby should have been born - to raise money for bereavement charities.

She said: "The main reason for sharing this photo is because we have lost two babies previously.

"The attitudes of many were that it's just a fetus, at least you were early and it wasn't a real baby. "But I wanted to show the world that it was not 'just a miscarriage'. It was very much a baby. Our baby.

"It's one of the few images we have and it's my personal favourite picture.

"Baby loss is such a taboo subject and it leaves many people in our situation feeling completely alone and their loss goes unrecognised.

"Our aim is to break the silence while raising money to support others in our situation and to fund research to help prevent this in the future."

Emileen is also mum to an eight-year-old daughter, Londyn, from a previous partner, and 22-month-old Paisley, who she and Nathan had together.

Nathan also has a son from a previous relationship, 13-year-old Benjamin.

The couple had been delighted at the prospect of welcoming another child into the world in June this year.

Speaking a month after their infant was delivered, engineer Nathan said: "When we first found out, it was massively exciting.

"We've been waiting since Paisley was born and we told the other children that we were expecting in June 2019.

"There was an overwhelming sense of happiness and feelings you associate with the news of having a baby. The other children were so excited."

At six weeks, the couple went for an early pregnancy scan, and were first told that the sack was irregular.

When they returned at eight weeks for a follow-up scan, they were told that it had improved and was "slightly less irregular".

Nathan said: "Emileen had to go Musgrove Park Hospital because of dehydration and she was told to go home and drink more.

"When we went in for the 12-week scan, we were told that the shape of the sack was much more regular and that it wasn't causing any concern.

"We were told that the pregnancy would continue as normal. We then made the appointment for the 20-week scan, which was supposed to be on January 14."

But at 15 weeks, on December 13, 2018, their lives were turned upside-down when they attended a routine mental health appointment.

Nathan continued: "Emileen has struggled with mental health during previous pregnancies.

"At a routine mental health appointment, they said we could have a listen to the baby's heartbeat. This was at 15 weeks.

"We were taken into a side room where they tried to use a doppler to find the heartbeat; they thought they found a faint one, but they couldn't be certain.

"They then took Emileen for another ultra sound, and that's when we found out that the baby's heart wasn't beating."

He said: "We both broke down in tears. We felt shock. Despair. It's a feeling I would never wish on anybody. It tears you apart."

The family discovered that their baby had died on Thursday, December 13. It was delivered stillborn the following Wednesday (December 19).

Nathan said: "There's been a lot of tears, a lot of anger and a lot of questions from Londyn.

"We've found no one in Somerset who can support her emotionally, there are no bereavement councillors that will work with someone of Londyn's age.

"That's part of our focus for the crowdfunding appeal. There is little to no support available for her - she struggles a lot with what has happened and with her emotions."

Nathan and Emileen will host a fundraising event, in June, to try and raise money for stillborn and miscarriage charities.

Using the name 'go bald for baby loss', the couple are hoping to raise money by people shaving their hair off for charity.

The event will be at the Phoenix Hotel in Chard on June 9, where there will be a host of activities and fundraising events.

Nathan said: "We're hoping to have the head shaves happen on stage at the event so that everyone can see.

"My wife and her sister are going to shave their heads entirely. I'm going to get my chest done as well as my leg waxed.

"We're looking for anyone who's willing to have their head shaved, body waxed, eye brows removed.

"'Go bald for baby loss' is the main part of our appeal, but we hope to raise money elsewhere such as through the Crowdfunding page, as well as raffles, donations from local businesses, a tombola at the event.

"It's fully open to the public. We're aiming to raise £10,000 - that's what we'd like to raise. Anything else would be a bonus."

The couple have thanked the staff at the hospital for their dedicated work during their stay.

Emileen said: "We would like to thank the staff on the Rowan Ward at Musgrove Park Hospital for the kind, thoughtful and respectful way they treated us and our baby throughout this painful time.

"Being able to spend our one and only night with our baby meant the absolute world to us, but it wouldn't have been possible without the Rowan Suite being available."

To donate to the family's Crowdfunding appeal, visit: