Abstract Palliative care for the newborn is a developing area. There are more than 2000 estimated neonatal deaths each year in the UK from causes likely to benefit from palliative care. There is an increasing recognition that while the goals of care may be different for dying newborns, they deserve the same high standard of care as those babies who go on to survive. Recent neonatal palliative care guidance is available from the British Association for Perinatal Medicine (BAPM), the General Medical Council (GMC), and ACT (the UK association for children's palliative care). We attempt to answer the question: ‘What does the provision of good neonatal palliative care look like?’ by examining the factors important in the provision of such care.