Transfer of local counselling and support service to Saint Michael’s

Saint Michael’s Hospice is now running local counselling and support service Talking Spaces. The mental health support service will now operate alongside Saint Michael’s Just ‘B’ Bereavement Service and will be based at Burton House, Hookstone Oval, in Harrogate. Talking Spaces was previously managed by Harrogate and Ripon Centres for Voluntary Service (HARCVS) but moved over to Saint Michael’s after both organisations agreed such a transfer would make both services more accessible, increase capacity and enhance the holistic approach available for clients.

In a joint statement Vice Chair of HARCVS, Jackie Snape and Chief Executive of Saint Michael’s, Tony Collins, said: “The benefits of this move for clients of both Just ‘B’ and Talking Spaces will include greater access to a wider range of specialist support, more seamless delivery of this support and more capacity to meet the ever increasing demand. Both services have excellent track records for improving the emotional and psychological health of the Harrogate district community and we look forward to the many positives the bringing together of this expertise will create. We are keen to look at how the integration of these services can build upon their individual success to support the growing needs for such services in the Harrogate area.”

The service transfer sees Saint Michael’s take responsibility for the delivery of the one-to-one counselling sessions, befriending services and support groups run by Talking Spaces. These services are supported by nearly 50 volunteers and two staff and are free at the point of need. They are available to people 18-years-old and over. The Talking Spaces team also runs training sessions for professionals who support people with their mental health. The transfer will not have an impact on the processes by which professionals or clients refer to either Just ‘B’ or Talking Spaces. Talking Spaces costs around £66,000 a year to run and has two main sources of income- The Big Lottery Fund and North Yorkshire County Council.

For further information about Just ‘B’ or Talking Spaces please contact (01423) 505 676 or email


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