I was born in St Helens near Liverpool before emigrating to New Zealand with my family when I was 14. In High school I became passionate about rugby, playing alongside the current All Blacks forward and scrum coach Mike Cron in the first 15 which was coached by the ex All Black hooker Dennis Young.
My passion shifted from rugby to acting when I started acting in amateur and professional theatre and television productions, playing the lead role when winning the NZ One Act Play festival, before travelling to Australia where I acted in several films and television dramas.
In Australia I became fascinated by 'the human condition' when I worked for the Sydney City Mission and St Vincent’s Hospital working with the homeless and people with addiction/mental health problems as an outreach worker and a welfare officer in a non-medical detoxification unit. I also did voluntary work at a young peoples refuge with my wife. This combined experience increased my interest in the human condition.
I then travelled overland thoughout Asia back to England with my wife to do a post graduate course in acting. I then went on to work for 7 years in a therapeutic and training centre in Greenwich London set up to stop the cycle of child abuse. This was an invaluable experience, prompting me to further my therapeutic studies. After this I worked for the Drink Crisis Centre, before joining the Probation Service where I spent 8 years. I worked in bail hostels, prison, community services and facilitated cognitive behavioural groups, sometimes using my acting/drama experience as a therapeutic tool. I also did voluntary work at the Positive Place Deptford, supporting people with HIV/AIDS. I then worked for the Community Drug Project before joining the NHS where I spent 7 years, employed in a therapeutic capacity working with addiction/dual diagnosis and recovery, with individuals and groups.
During this time I did many therapeutic courses, completed a Masters in Neuro Linguistic Programming [an applied psychology] and also qualified as a Hypnotherapist, achieving two Diplomas in Psychotherapeutic [Ericksonian] and Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapy. The many short courses I have done include: Auricular Acupuncture, Brief Solution Focused Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Gestalt Therapy, Psychosynthesis, Anger Management and Bach flower remedies.
I also produced and acted in a one man show on Vincent Van Gogh called 'A State of Being', which I took to the Edinburgh Festival. My research into his character taught me a great deal about the human psyche.
After training as a Body Stress Release practitioner in South Africa, I spent a year working in a specialist care home which included paraplegics, quadriplegics, stroke survivors, addiction/dual diagnosis issues, multiple sclerosis and people with Down’s Syndrome. Parkinson’s disease, dementia, eating disorders, self harm and many people on the autistic spectrum.
I have been in continual professional development since that time, qualifying in Emotional Freedom Technique and Matrix Reimprinting and have recently qualified as a Three Principles Facilitator which I have been studying for over 4 years and last year did some voluntary work with ‘Beyond Recovery’ in HMP Onley Prison, Rugby where this new paradigm in psychology is being piloted. I am continuing with my post graduate studies, mentoring new students and am in regular Peer Supervision. I am fully insured and am a member of the British Complementary Medicine Association.
I am grateful to all those who have mentored me and am inspired by the exemplars of the therapeutic community from the past, notably Milton Erickson and especially Sydney Banks, who simplified everything to what is Universal for human beings.
I love Art, Literature, Music, Theatre, Film, Sport, Travel and Vipassana Meditation.
My curiosity and fascination for what it is to be human continues unabated.