Diane Blood tells of joy at birth

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DIANE BLOOD, who became pregnant by her dead husband's sperm, spoke for the first time yesterday of the "wonderful feeling" of becoming a mother. Mrs Blood, 32, gave birth to Liam by Caesarean section at a Sheffield hospital on Friday after a four-year fight to be artificially inseminated.

"It's a wonderful feeling to know that he's here," she said. "He's in a special care baby unit at the moment and I'm obviously still very concerned about him but it was lovely to hold him in my arms." Liam weighed 5lb 13oz and arrived a month early.Stephen Blood, 30, who died of meningitis would have been "very proud to be a father".

His wife persuaded doctors to remove sperm from his body while he was unconscious. Because it was taken without his written consent, the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority blocked Mrs Blood's use of it. The Court of Appeal decided that under European law she did have the right to use the sperm and a Belgian clinic carried out the insemination.

The law prevents Stephen being named on the birth certificate but Mrs Blood had no plans to challenge it. Asked if she was likely to have more children she said: "It's a theoretical possibility."