THERE were even more reasons to celebrate as parents welcomed their bundles of joy into the world this New Year.

The first babies of 2013 were born at Royal Bolton Hospital yesterday, with mostly girls making their arrival.

The first baby of the year to be born at the Princess Anne Maternity Unit was Scarlett Annabelle Gallacher at 1.37am, weighing 7lb 15ozs, to parents Elizabeth Warburton and Steven Gallacher.

The proud mum-of-four, of Osmund Avenue, said: “She was due on December 28. I came in but I didn’t think they were going to start me off.”

Rachel and Frazer Hilton welcomed twin girls, Nancy Ellen and Martha Esme, a month early. Mrs Hilton, aged 28, of Little Hulton, said: “At least they will always have a party on their birthday.”

Martha, 4lb 15oz, was born at 2.41am and Nancy, 6lb 2oz, arrived at 3.12am. The couple already have two children.

Minutes later, Teresa Hunt, aged 26, of Westhoughton, gave birth to her first child — Caylee McGuinness, weighing 8lb 2oz.

Amanda Heywood, from Bury, gave birth to 5lb 15oz Phebe, who had been due on Boxing Day, at 6.22am — a little sister to twins Callum and Jake, aged six. The 31-year-old said: “I’ve got my two boys and my girl, that’s me done.”

Lebo Powe, aged 24, and husband Mothusi Powe, aged 37, welcomed 6lb 12oz Grace Larona at 8.46am.

The couple, of The Sheddings, Great Lever, have two daughters, Rachel, aged six, and Jessica, aged three.

Mrs Powe said: “We had celebrated New Year at home, with the girls, just us family. The labour started at about 5am and I came in hospital at about 6am.”

Her daughter had been due on January 17. Mrs Powe said: “I feel blessed.”

Joining the girls was baby Alex Parry, who made his arrival two weeks early at 8.57am, to parents Suzanne Pollard and Phillip Parry.

He weighed 6lb 7oz, the same weight as his four-year-old sister, Sophie, when she was born.

Mr Parry, of Moses Gate, Farnworth, was working as a taxi driver in Manchester city centre when he got a call to dash to the hospital at about 4am. The delighted father said: “It was a bit of a shock.”