Sara French . Hireth Woodland Therapy . Indoor and Outdoor Therapy . MBACP

Sara French  .  Hireth Woodland Therapy  .  Indoor and Outdoor Therapy  . MBACP


07717 456395

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About me

More than 25 years' experience as a qualified counsellor

Special interest in bereavement, loss and change
Working with individuals 18+
Centrally located private practice in Chippenham

'Wild' Therapy in Ancient Woodland

Offering a warm and professional service
Registered member of the British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy

My approach to counselling is Humanistic and encompasses Person Centred, Relational and sensori-motor approaches. I can bring acceptance to you and your story; offering you the safety and freedom to find your own path and to navigate relationship difficulties, personal and professional challenges, loss, change and past trauma.

              "How can I begin anything new with all of yesterday in me?"

                                                                                                       Leonard Cohen

Why Counselling?

You may:

  • Be troubled by something in the past or present
  • Be having thoughts or feelings that interfere with your everyday life and relationships
  • Have a sense that you are stuck and in conflict with yourself or those around you.
  • Feel out of options, miserable or angry and just can't shake it
  • Feel over-whelmed
  • Be suffering from depression and dark thoughts or anxiety (or both). These create a struggle to 'stay present'
  • No longer enjoy ordinary pleasures
  • Find your usual ways of coping no longer work
  • Feel lost and confused or unable to decide

It is often difficult for people to express themselves openly to those who are close to them. Counselling is a way of caring for yourself. We will work together on whatever issues you need to address. I offer a safe environment so you can explore and talk in confidence; at your own pace. What you say and feel will be respected. Emotions help us understand both historical experiences and more recent life events. I am experienced in helping people connect with themselves and those around them; leading to greater acceptance of self and others.

I will offer you the support needed to help you move forward with refreshed understanding, acceptance and authenticity.

The relationships you form and nurture can contribute to a full and satisfying life. It is also true that your  relationships may be getting in the way of your personal wellbeing. Our relationships now can reflect those of the past. I often work with people who have been abused, neglected and bullied as children. These past relationships cast shadows over the present day. You may even find yourself accepting unacceptable treatment, feeling confused, bottling up resentments or displaying intense anger.

Counselling can help you move towards fulfilling relationships in your personal and professional life and also connect, or reconnect with nature and humanity. You may be surprised to find that the relationship with a counsellor can shed light on relationships of the past and so much more.

Indoor Counselling
I offer daytime and evening indoor appointments. You can just email or call me for an appointment or let me know you would like a free telephone consultation of up to 20 minutes to help you decide whether to come for an initial session.

I offer one-off and ongoing sessions. Initially a single session is a stand alone experience and can lead to insight or help break through a barrier of some kind.

In this session you will be able to share what has brought you to counselling. Meeting face to face in this way is valuable for you to decide if I can be helpful to you if you are thinking of some ongoing sessions.

There's no obligation to come for more than one session. Continuing sessions are most often once each week and for 50 minutes but frequency and duration can be adapted to meet your needs and circumstances.


Counselling Without Walls

My curiosity about notions that modern ways of living may have a negative effect on our mental health have lead me to explore ecopsychology and Wild Therapy: dispensing with the walls and roof and working together in the natural environment.

The traditional counselling environment doesn't suit everyone and there is a growing body of research that supports ideas that being outside is good for our mental health. I invite you to sample counselling outdoors. This need not be strenuous. We can simply walk or sit outside.

Within private ancient woodland between Chippenham and Bath you can encounter the other than human and sense the more than human in yourself as it is reflected in a landscape teeming with opportunity for realisation, clarity, transition and peace of mind.

The outdoors presents more opportunities for movement and awareness of our bodies and what they have to say about our experiences. Trauma and past experience can speak through the body in the form of fatigue and chronic illness. Outdoor work seems particularly suited to awareness of our bodies and what our health and sensations in the moment are telling us.

Initially I will meet you in an indoor setting to explore how we can approach outdoor work.

Natural Mindfulness

I am a Natural Mindfulness Guide. Please enquire about groups. Natural Mindfulness is simply the act of walking mindfully in Nature; more deeply it is fostering awareness of the fundamental nature of our being, reality and existence. The practice may be described as 'quieter' than outdoor counselling and is a route to improved health and wellbeing and an antidote to many of the health issues associated with modern-day living.

I have practiced counselling for more than 20 years.
I grew up on a farm in Wiltshire, lived in Denmark for a while and have worked with adults and children in the fields of Education, Social Care and Criminal Justice. I play guitar and the Irish drum.

I am interested in advances in neuroscience and the growing understanding of and treatment of trauma. I practice mindfulness and meditation and have had many hours of my own therapy. I have an insatiable love for landscape and photography and the healing power of Nature.

“When I have been listened to and when I have been heard, I am able to re-perceive my world in a new way and to go on. It is astonishing how elements that seem insoluble become soluble when someone listens, how confusions that seem irremediable turn into relatively clear flowing streams…”

Carl Rogers

Training, qualifications & experience

  • Advanced Diploma Person Centred Counselling (BACP Accredited Course)
  • Diploma in Counselling Level III
  • 20 years counselling experience (individuals & couples)
  • Training counselling students, foster carers and other professionals
  • Natural Mindfulness Guide Training
  • Work for the NHS and Local Authority and Employee Assistance Programmes
  • Registered Member of BACP and adhering to their ethical framework and standards of confidentiality
  • Fully Insured
  • Criminal Records Bureau Enhanced Disclosure
  • Regularly undergoing supervision and personal development

Member organisations


Accredited register membership

Other areas of counselling I deal with

Personal Development
Counselling is often regarded as something we do when something is 'wrong'. Many people benefit from using counselling perhaps once each month to help them 'stay well'.

Photos & videos

  • Sara French  .  Hireth Woodland Therapy  .  Indoor and Outdoor Therapy  . MBACP image 1
  • Sara French  .  Hireth Woodland Therapy  .  Indoor and Outdoor Therapy  . MBACP image 2
  • Sara French  .  Hireth Woodland Therapy  .  Indoor and Outdoor Therapy  . MBACP image 3


Indoor fee range is between £40 and £50 (50 minutes)  depending on circumstances.

Outdoor counselling is £35 per hour.

Further information

Please enquire about:
Group work
Family Work/Parenting
Counselling via Email or Telephone

Maps & Directions

Chippenham, SN15

Type of session

Online counselling: Yes
Telephone counselling: Yes
Face to face counselling: Yes
Home visits: No

Practical details

Sign language: No
Other languages: None


Accessibility information
Wheelchair access: No


Days and evenings in Chippenham, Wiltshire. Telephone & Video Counselling. Daytime in Ancient Woodland, Wiltshire.

Types of client

Young people
Older adults
Employee Assistance Programme