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Last Updated: Thursday, 11 September, 2003, 09:29 GMT 10:29 UK
Internet plea for surrogate mother
Bobby and Nikki Bains
Bobby and Nikki Bains have made five attempts with IVF
A childless couple have made a desperate internet plea to women in India for a volunteer surrogate mother.

Bobby, 39, and Nikki Bains, 38, were forced to widen their search to India when attempts to find a woman prepared to help in Britain failed.

The couple from Ilford in east London, who have undergone five courses of expensive IVF treatment, are now offering 15,000 to any woman prepared to help them.

They made their appeal via their own website which chronicles their bid to conceive.

The couple have also placed advertisements in Indian newspapers and on websites around the world appealing for Asian women to help them.

Doctors cannot explain why the couple, who have been married for eight years, cannot conceive and they believe their best chance lies with a surrogate mother willing to have an embryo implanted in her womb.

I know it will happen one day and we will be able to hold our child in our arms
Nikki Bains

Mrs Bains said: "If I could just have a child then I would be complete."

If this method is unsuccessful they may be forced to use a donor egg from the surrogate mother, fertilised with Mr Bains' sperm.

They are currently in touch with one woman in Britain and have received several responses from women in India.

Surrogacy in this country is carefully regulated by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority and direct payments to volunteers are illegal, although they are allowed substantial "expenses".

No jurisdiction

But the HFEA has no jurisdiction over British couples receiving overseas treatment.

Despite their long battle to become parents, Mrs Baines, a legal secretary, and Mr Baines, an engineer, remain optimistic.

"We are taking it one step at a time," said Mrs Bains.

"But I know it will happen one day and we will be able to hold our child in our arms."

BBC London's Matthew Morris
"They hope a surrogate mother may be found in India as they haven't found a suitable British woman"

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