Nicola Hutchings MA BACP Accredited

Nicola Hutchings MA BACP Accredited

John Pounds Centre
23 Queen Street

07949 653404

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About me

I offer therapy focusing on solutions, encouraging clients to develop their own skills, strengths and resources in dealing with their issues.

Individual Counselling
In a safe, confidential place, clients may explore life and how to work towards their best hopes. Within a good working relationship we will utilise the most appropriate style of counselling, so that the therapeutic experience is maximised. Therapy will focus on solutions, promote positive change and offer an opportunity to build on inherent strengths and potential.

Anxiety presents physically, emotionally and psychologically.   Counselling can help you with feelings of overwhelming worry, general anxiousness, panic attacks and unrealistic fears, by providing you with ways of dealing with situations as they occur and exploring the cause of these. By understanding the condition more fully and taking control, counselling also teaches guided relaxation including mindfulness – being in the moment – rather than worrying about the past or the future (as per the NICE guidelines).

I enjoy reducing anxiety through therapy and have seen excellent results, but these also depend upon positive co-operation of the individual.

Bereavement and Loss
Loss evokes all kinds of emotions such as shock, sadness, anger, denial and guilt.  Grief is a natural response to loss. C.S. Lewis said: “No-one ever told me that grief felt so like fear”. Standing alongside, understanding the feelings and the process of grieving is at the heart of therapy.

Loss is not just about death – it could be a loss of a relationship, your health or a job.  Loss and re-investment is a lifelong experience.  Personal experience and training have moulded and developed me to help individuals through this difficult period of your life. William Worden describes our reorganisation and re-investments as “learning to live in a world where the (deceased) loss is no more”.

Depression and Low Mood
Depression affects many aspects of life including thinking, sleeping, eating and functioning in relationships.  It can make us inwards looking, miserable and afraid.  Although it is important to examine the causes and not deny our problems, it is also helpful to focus on solutions.

Solution Focused Therapy considers our best hopes for moving forward and by setting and achieving small goals, empowers us to take control.  Embracing cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) we learn to re-frame our thinking and change our behaviour, to help raise mood. More than anything life has taught me to ‘carpe diem’ – seize the day.  I have helped many to overcome depression, through this also involves effort and determination on the client’s behalf.

You may feel you would like to improve the way you relate to others, or break free from old patterns and find a new way of being.  Each individual brings along with them their background, upbringing, personality, education, strengths and weaknesses.  Bring together one or more complex individual and you have the potential for commonalities, but also for disagreements.

Whether it’s a family member, a working relationship, friendship or partner, therapy can help you find solutions in how you relate and respond to others.

If you have low self-esteem, you may see life negatively, lack confidence or find it difficult to be assertive.  Counselling can help you explore the self-defeating patterns of thought and behaviour that keep self- esteem low and help you develop new more a more helpful view of yourself.  Facilitating improvement of self-acceptance and bringing your positive qualities into focus.

Stress is responsible for many lost working days and is usually caused by a number of important life events happening within a short time span, when individuals are pushed beyond their normal coping capabilities e.g. divorce, death of a loved one, redundancy, financial problems, health issues, bullying etc…

Counselling helps us take appropriate action and develop coping skills, strengths and strategies.

Couples Counselling

Providing couples with a safe environment to explore issues that may be interfering with their relationship.

Couples Counselling provides time away from home and work to explore difficulties in a safe environment.  It enhances strengths and explores difficulties, giving the opportunity to move forward. More than anything it allows constructive communication with a positive facilitator. Often relationship issues arrive at counselling very late, thus being deeply entrenched.  This work can resolve conflicts and allow the relationship to develop and move on.


Supervision for counsellors, trainees counsellors, and other professionals across a wide range of settings.

My work in supervision began informally as a mentor, but has developed to embrace a Post Graduate Certificate in Supervision, following the Shohet and Hawkins model for ‘supervisors within the caring professions’.

“All counsellors, psychotherapists, trainers and supervisors are required to have regular and on-going formal supervision / consultative support for their work in accordance with professional requirements” (BACP Ethical Framework 2010 Pg. 6, Para 7) and in these days of increased accountability this also extends across many other professions.

Training, qualifications & experience

  • Masters Degree in Counselling Studies, University of Manchester
  • Post Graduate Certificate in Supervision, Manchester Institute of Psychotherapy
  • Accredited to the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP)
  • Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checked

Member organisations

Registered / Accredited


Accredited register membership

Photos & videos

  • Counselling Room


  • Individual Counselling fees are £50 per session. (Consideration may be made on an individual basis)
  • Couples Counselling fees are £60 per session
  • Supervision fees are £45 per hour

Payment is accepted either in cash or bank transfer after each session.

Counselling may be funded by insurance schemes or Employment Assistance Programmes (EAP's).

Further information


"I feel a totally different person and I enjoy life now. I learnt lots of different strategies that helped me to deal with stressful situations and feel I can cope with life and whatever comes my way" - Client

Dear Nicola, I felt I needed to drop you a line to thank you for the last 8 weeks – my how they have flown. I feel so much better, focused and positive. Thanks once again. - Client

To Nicola, I just wanted to drop you a line to say a big thank you for helping me sort things out in my life and move on.  You have been a great help and inspiration.  I would recommend your own personal services to anyone who needed help, as you helped me so much.  Thank you. -  Client


Portsmouth: Counselling will be held in a discrete and quiet therapy room conveniently located within the John Pounds Centre.  There are facilities for disabled clients, toilets and a waiting area.

Queen Street is the main road that leads down to the Historic Dockyard, with access to the John Pounds Centre through the archway on Queen Street, by the pedestrian crossing.  1 hour on-street parking is available for no charge in the surrounding roads.

Public transport links are excellent, with a bus stop right outside.  Portsmouth Hard and Portsmouth and Southsea train stations are within walking distance.

The Ferry Terminal (Gun Wharf Quays) is just 5 minutes walk away for clients travelling from the Isle of Wight.

Maps & Directions

Portsmouth, PO1 3HN

Type of session

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

Practical details

Sign language: No
Other languages: None


Accessibility information
Wheelchair user access: Yes


Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday daytime

Types of client

Young people
Older adults
Employee Assistance Programme

Supervision & training

Supervisor offering Supervision of Individuals and Groups.

View supervision profile