“Her little feet rested on the top of my bump. I remember stroking my bump at the same time, hoping for a miracle.
“Katie immediately reacted. She kicked and started moving, as if she knew. The second time I held Amy the following day she turned and put her head towards her sister inside the womb.”
Maria then waited for baby number two to arrive. She said: “I knew I could go into labour at any moment.
“The doctors said we just had to wait but every day was a bonus. I viewed it as a mission to take the pregnancy on as far as I possibly could. There was no room for negative thoughts. And as the weeks passed the tiny life growing inside me got stronger.”
Maria was finally induced on August 27 at 36 weeks and three days, after doctors decided it was safe. She gave birth to Katie, who weighed 5lbs 10oz, after just over an hour.
She said: “ When they put Katie in my arms she smiled at me and the nurse said ‘she’s fine’. We both cried.
“What immediately struck us was that Amy takes after my side of the family and Katie takes after Chris’s.
“Two hours later we reunited the twins. Amy was still in her incubator and they put Katie’s cot beside it.
“The nurse took Katie and put her in the incubator, facing her sister as they slept and Amy immediately smiled. There was no doubt that they recognised each other.”
Dad Chris caused quite a commotion when he went to register the births.
Mum Maria added: “It caused a stir. Their certificates say, ‘Amy Elliott, Twin One, date of birth 1 June and Katie Elliott, Twin Two, date of birth 27 August’.”
The paper says Katie was taken home at five days old and Amy followed her seven weeks later on October 16, joining Chris and Maria’s two other children – Olivia, 13, and Jack, 11.
Dad Chris said: “I never lost hope even in the darkest moments. The medical team did an incredible job.”
Maria concluded: “I’m so honoured to have had these two girls that are so special. For all of us to be here, could I be any luckier?”
Guinness World Records spokesman Damian Field said: “If the claim of 87 days between the birth of the twins is substantiated they will break the world record.”
The existing record is held by Peggy Lynn of Pennsylvania, with a gap of 84 days between births.