SPECIAL events are being held to mark Baby Loss Awareness Week.

Bereaved families are being invited to tie a ribbon to railings at Clacton’s Memorial Gardens.

Tendring Council has been hosting events in Clacton to raise awareness of pregnancy and baby loss since Wednesday.

The annual awareness week is an opportunity for bereaved parents, families and friends, to commemorate babies’ lives.

Clacton Town Hall will be lit up in blue and pink throughout the week to mark the initiative.

In addition, a remembrance display will see pink and blue ribbons tied to the railings along the seafront Memorial Gardens.

Families can collect a length of ribbon from the town hall or Clacton Library, write the name of their loved one and add it to the seafront display.

Maria Gormley, supporter care co-ordinator from Sands, one of the charities involved, will also be at the memorial gardens on Saturday and Sunday with ribbons for people to add.

Dan Land, who is the chairman of Tendring Council, said: “We hope lighting our town hall and hosting this ribbon display will spark conversations about baby loss and give bereaved parents and families an opportunity to talk about their precious babies.”

Clea Harmer, chief executive of Sands, the stillbirth and neonatal death charity, said: “Baby Loss Awareness Week is a unique opportunity for parents to commemorate their babies who died, and I hope this commemoration in Tendring will help bereaved families feel less isolated and alone in their grief.

“Pregnancy loss or the death of a baby is a tragedy that affects thousands of people every year.

“It is devastating for parents and families and it’s vital they get the bereavement support and care they need, for as long as they need it.”

For more information about Baby Loss Awareness Week, go to babyloss-awareness.org.

Services of remembrance are also being held for families who have lost a baby during pregnancy or around the time of giving birth.

The remembrance services will be led by the East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust’s chaplaincy team.

In Colchester, the service is on Thursday at the Ark Methodist Church, in Jack Andrews Drive, Highwoods, at 7.30pm.

Allison Cline-Dean, lead chaplain at the trust, which runs Colchester, Clacton and Harwich hospitals, said: “This special service is for parents who have lost a child as a result of a miscarriage, stillbirth or shortly after the birth of their baby, whether that loss was recent or many years ago.

“It brings families together so their baby can be remembered and we can help them to support each other through the pain of their loss.”

The services will include prayers, music and an opportunity for parents to light a candle in memory of their baby.

There will also be time to talk to members of chaplaincy and maternity teams.

Any family members who have been affected by the loss of a baby, including grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers and sisters, are welcome to attend. Refreshments will be provided.

For more information, contact the Chaplaincy team at Colchester on 01206 742014 or Ipswich on 01473 712233.