I'm British, and I've never given birth, but I do work in anaesthetics, and so I'm often the person putting the epidural in. I have to admit I'm shocked by some of the stories I've read on here, particularly by Americans. I've never seen an obstetrician rush to do a caesarian section unless it was really necessary (if anything, sometimes we think they wait too long), nor have I ever known a midwife to try and push a women into having an epidural.
Also as someone who regularly sees the before and after with an epidural, I am sure I will want one when I do give birth one day. The women I've put epidurals in are always so grateful. They go from being in absolute agony (often far worse than they were expecting) to being relaxed and comfortable. And they usually think I'm wonderful. :)
The midwives I work with are also extremely good, and I am very glad that I live in a country where women are cared for my midwives during their labour. I can't believe that in the US babies are only delivered by obstetricians! Personally, I'd rather have my baby delivered by a midwife than by an obstetrician (if that's possible). However, I would only ever want to give birth in a hospital, not only because there's anaesthetists to do an epidural, but also paediatricians and a neonatal unit. I used to work in neonates and I've seen some seemingly straightforward deliveries go horribly wrong. Also, as an anaesthetist in obstetrics, I've seen women almost bleed to death due to complications of labour. So to me, giving birth anywhere other than a hospital would be putting mine and by baby's life at unnecessary risk. But that's just me, and I have a slightly different perspective on this than many women.