COVID19: Due to the current situation I am working with clients and supervisees via telephone, Skype or Zoom. I have limited spaces available so please call if you would like to discuss arranging an assessment session.
Hi there, my name is Melanie and for over 20 years I have worked as a qualified Integrative Counsellor, Psychotherapist, Supervisor and Trainer (see qualifications below). I am a Registered Member of the British Association for Counsellors and Psychotherapists. I bring all that experience and learning into the counselling room to find ways of working that best suit you, the client, and the material you bring to talk about. Finding the right counsellor for you is essential. I offer a free initial telephone chat and then we can arrange a full assessment session so that you can decide if I am someone you want to work with. I'll tell you about the way I work and answer any questions or concerns you may have. I provide a warm, compassionate, safe, confidential and professional space within which to work. My work has involved supporting children, adolescents, adults and elders, individually, as couples and in groups.
I have worked extensively with the following areas: the death of a child, grief and bereavement, historic and recent sexual, physical and emotional abuse/rape/assault, self injury/harm, post traumatic stress, inner child work, disability, caring for family members with disability, mental health issues, terminal disease, low self esteem/confidence, personal development/growth work, anxiety, depression, negative thought patterns, relationship difficulties, sexuality and spirituality. I have also supported many other issues that arise from the wide range of life's challenges that any of us can be faced with. More areas of work are listed below but feel free to contact me and ask if you have something specific thats not listed. I have lectured in counselling, written and delivered a wide range of training days and workshops and facilitated support groups.
ECOTHERAPY/ECOPSYCHOLOGY: As well as working in the traditional counselling room setting I am lucky enough to be able to offer clients a unique opportunity to take the counselling outdoors and into the natural world. Using outdoor spaces allows us to re-connect and engage with the natural world and this can really support the counselling work and bring new perspectives to the therapeutic experience. I live very close to the beach with woodland and a headland close by making this work easily accessible. I am a member of Ecopsychology UK. This may not always be appropriate but if it is offered the decision to work outside on occasions always lies with the client.
I not only bring 22 years work experience with me but I have faced and learnt to manage many difficulties and traumas within my own life. By being authentic and genuine I bring my learnt wisdom from those challenging times. It's from personal experience as well as my professional work that I know and value the support and help that counselling and psychotherapy can give us. I am more than happy to discuss just 'how' I think I may be able to help you when we first chat. As a therapist I have been described by my peers as having warmth, wisdom, integrity and strong boundaries. I like to think I also bring kindness, honesty, care, creativity and some laughter to my work. I offer counselling in my dedicated therapy room which is on the ground floor and has wheelchair access.
Over the years I've developed an integrative and creative way of working meaning that I can combine theoretical approaches to best suit the client and their needs. I enjoy working creatively where appropriate but again the decision lies with each client. I can offer a range of resources to help you explore and express including the use of; art, writing, collage, ceremony, ritual, Sand Tray, music, breath work, mindfulness or simply, but most importantly, my skills in listening, reflecting, challenging and witnessing.
I am here to provide a safe and trusting space to support you with anything that may be getting in the way of you getting the best out of your everyday life. My aim is to help you understand yourself better and address areas that you are struggling with or want to enhance so that you feel happier within yourself and your life.
As a qualified clinical supervisor I have provided one to one and group supervision for trainee counsellors, qualified counsellors, social workers, healthcare professionals, teams and volunteers. I have worked privately and within numerous organisations. I am happy to provide face to face or internet supervision. Please see supervisors profile.
Training, qualifications & experience
Post Graduate Certificate in Supervision (Distinction) MA Level (2010)
Higher National Diploma in Counselling and Psychotherapy (2001) Acceptance And Commitment Therapy (ACT) (2) - APT Accreditation Diploma in Psychology & Health Science (1995) City & Guilds Further & Adult Education Teachers Certificate 1 (2002). .. BSc (Hons) Midwifery (2015) Hypnobirthing Practitioners Training (2014)
Work Life Roles:
Counsellor/Therapist (Individuals / Groups): 1998 - Ongoing, Private & Organisations
Supervisor (Individuals/Groups): 2003 - Ongoing, Private, Gamcare, Adaction, Social Services, Counselling Students & Qualified Counsellors
Group Trainer / Facilitator: 2003 - Ongoing: Writing and Delivering training covering; Understanding Self Injury, Importance of Boundaries, Working Creatively with Clients, Leaning in with Loss, Grief and Bereavement, Working with Adolescents, Young Carers Issues, Carers Champions Training (Primary Care Trust), End of Life Care for Carers (Dept. Of Health), Basic Child Protection, Listening Skills. Self Care in the Helping Professions, The Importance of Supervision, Team Building etc.
Bereavement Services Coordinator & Supervisor: 2016 -2018 St Margarets Hospices
Midwife: 2012 -2016 University of the West of England / St Michaels Hospital (In Training and Post Qualification)
Counselling Service Manager, Developer & Supervisor: 2007 - 2012 North Somerset Crossroads / Carers Trust
Founder/Group Facilitator: 'Bereaved Parents Together' Support Group 2009 - Ongoing
Young Carers Service Manager and Developer: 2002 - 2007 North Somerset Crossroads/Carers Trust
Young Carers Case Worker: 2001 - 2002 North Somerset Crossroads/Carers Trust
Lecturer In Counselling: 2003 - 2006 Weston College
Trainer and Facilitator:2001 – 2003 Bristol Crisis Service for Women
Sessional Counsellor: 2001 – 2002 The Women’s Project – Domestic Abuse
Samaritans Volunteer: 1996 – 1998
Senior Support Worker: 1986–1988 Mental Health Team, Lewisham, London.
Family Support Worker: 1985 – 1986 Southwark Social Services, London.
Continuing Professional and Personal Development Training.
I am committed to ongoing learning and have attended many workshops, courses and additional trainings to update my work and enhance my development (CPD) as a counsellor, supervisor and human being. These include:
- Healing the Maiden
- Exploring Sex and Sexuality with Clients
- Helping Clients Tell their Story
- Ecotherapy with Martin Jordan
- Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults and Children Level 3
- Adult and Neonatal Life Support (2015)
- When a baby dies
- Compassionate Mind Training and Breath Work
- Assessments Friend or Foe
- Attachment and Its Legacy
- Working with Abuse
- Ethical Dilemmas
- Safeguarding Children and Young People Stage 2
- Understanding and Working with Addiction
- Sand Tray therapy
- Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (8 week course
- Children and the Impact of Domestic Violence
- Supervision & Appraisal Training
- Psychodrama: Various Weekends/Retreats and day courses
- Acpc Safeguarding Neglect Workshop
- Working with Children of Parents with Mental Health Issues
- Vulnerable Adults Awareness Training
- Management Skills
- Facilitation Skills
- Mental Health awareness
- Respecting Resistance in the Process of Change
- Spirituality and the self
- Stress, burn-out and handling anxiety
- Understanding Eating disorders
- Sexuality and Disability
- Seeing with the Heart– The Psychosynthesis and Education Trust
Published Material / Local Articles:
Why Counselling? - Melanie Phelps In ‘Carers Link’ Autumn 2010 Crossroads Care North Somerset
Coping with Caring and Christmas - Melanie Phelps In ‘Carers Link’ Winter 2010 Crossroads Care North Somerset
For Jacques - The Death of a Child - Melanie Phelps In ‘Carers Link’ Spring 2011 Crossroads Care North Somerset
Dealing with Isolation - Melanie Phelps In ‘Carers Link’ Winter 2011 Crossroads Care North Somerset
British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy
BACP is one of the UK’s largest professional bodies for counselling and psychotherapy. Therapists registered with the Association fall into a number of different membership categories such as Individual Member, Registered Member MBACP and Registered Member MBACP (Accred), each standing for different levels of training and experience. MBACP (Accred) and MBACP (Snr Accred) members have achieved a substantial level of training and experience approved by the Association.
Registered members can be found on the BACP Register, which was the first register to achieve Accredited Voluntary Register status issued by the Professional Standards Authority. Individual Members will have completed an appropriate counselling and/or psychotherapy course and started to practise, but will not appear on the BACP Register until they've progressed to Registered Member MBACP status.
All members are bound by a Code of Ethics & Practice and a Complaints Procedure. Accredited by the Professional Standards Authority.
Accredited register membership
Accredited Register Scheme
The Accredited Register Scheme was set up in 2013 by the Department of Health (DoH) as a way to recognise organisations that hold voluntary registers which meet certain standards. These standards are set by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA).
This therapist has indicated that they belong to an Accredited Register.
Areas of counselling I deal with
Other areas of counselling I deal with
With over 20 years experience I have worked with a wide range of issues and it's simply not possible to list them all. Also our difficulties never happen in isolation. Any problems we face often impact on other areas of our life, like the domino effect, which can make everything feel overwhelming and difficult to untangle or make sense of. So if you are not sure if counselling is right for you or not sure what it entails or if you have questions please feel free to make contact. We can chat through whether or not I may be the best person to work with you or I may be able to offer suggestions or point you in another direction.
I offer a free 15 minute telephone part-assessment to give us the opportunity to chat and decide whether you would like to come for the assessment session and begin working with me. The first assessment session costs £40 and lasts 50 minutes. . This allows you to meet with me face to face or currently via Zoom, Skype or telephone, to see if we would work well together and I can learn more about you. After that if you decide to continue the fees are as follows.
Individual Counselling Fees
Initial Assessment £40 (50 minutes)
Weekly Sessions £40 (50 minutes)
Telephone and Skype Counselling
Initial Assessment £40 (50 minutes)
Weekly Sessions £40 (50 minutes)
Individual Supervision (Face to Face or Skype)
60 minutes - £50.00
90 minutes - £75.00
Please contact to discuss terms
A few low cost places are available with negotiation for those on certain benefits or experiencing difficulties and for counselling students where appropriate.
Available Midweek - Summer and Winter Tmes vary
I work from home in a comfortable and quiet dedicated counselling/therapy room in Sand Bay, North Somerset. There is good disabled/ wheelchair access and parking outside. There is a bus stop within 50 yards.
I am lucky enough to live beside a beautiful beach with a headland to one side and a woodlands to the other. This means any outdoor therapy undertaken is easily arranged. Appropriate clothing and footwear will be necessary if you decide to work in this way.
I am a registered member of the British Association of Counsellors and Psychotherapists (BACP) and work within its Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions. I am committed to safeguarding and have a keen awareness of equality and diversity issues. I have regularly held an enhanced DBS check.