north dorset countryside

Make sure to scroll down to find specific help with everything from Autistic Spectrum to Mental Health at Work to Veterans.

A list of Social Activities and Events is also available to download at the bottom of this page.

general practices

Going to see your GP about your mental health

Talking to a doctor about your own mental health can be difficult.  Several Mental Health organisations provide useful guidance to help with this. 

See Mental Health Foundation 


Rethink Mental Illness

Social Prescribing Team is often based at the Surgeries and can offer support, signposting and practical help.  Some  Peer Support Groups have been set up such as for those going through the Menopause and for Carers at The Blackmore Vale Practice.  Health Champion Volunteers including telephone befrienders also work with them and there is lots of support for Carers.

See the news on this website for updates and copies of ‘Shout Out’ a monthly newsletter, ring your surgery and ask for the social prescribing team or contact via the practice websites.

email:  or

Help and Care

This team also work in North Dorset surgeries, comprised of Link Workers and Self Management Coaches.  Contact them or ask at Reception for details.  

Mental Health Peer Specialists/Gateway workers  and Mental Health Triage Practitioners also work from some surgeries.  Ask at Reception or the Social Prescribers.

For a description of the different roles at the Blackmore Vale Practice see:  Health and Wellbeing

For Gillingham 

general help

Always look at the News pages (searchable) on this website for recent changes to services. Please also look at the websites listed if you can and telephone or email the organisations if you are unsure.

steps 2 wellbeing logo

Steps to Wellbeing  

Find Out More

This is the organisation (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT Service)) in Dorset to which you can be referred or refer yourself for talking therapies and other help.  Have a look at their website for a full understanding of what they do.  After referral you will have an assessment appointment to see what is appropriate for you. 

They also have a “Body and Mind Service” where they work with other professionals to help those whose mental health is suffering because of conditions such as Diabetes, Chronic Pain, Respiratory Conditions, Heart Conditions and Stroke.

Telephone: 0300 790 6828


24/7 Helpline for Dorset open to all ages

0800 652 0190 or access via NHS 111

(See Urgent Page too)

Community Front Room

A Community Front Room is located in Shaftesbury.  This is based at:

Shaftesbury & District Carers (HOPE Project)
Units 4-6, Plot 25c
Longmead Industrial Estate
Shaftesbury, Dorset   SP7 8PL

Get Directions

It is open from 2.15 – 9.45 pm Thursday to Sunday.  No referral or appointment needed, just turn up and ring the doorbell.

Community Front Rooms (CFRs) are open to anyone over 18 who needs face-to-face support.

They are staffed by mental health professionals and peer specialists (people with personal experience of mental health issues), and are there for you if you are struggling to cope. 

CFRs are welcoming, informal, safe spaces where you can discuss your problems.

Staff will not offer medication or structured therapy, but rather self-management advice and support that helps you find the solutions to aid your recovery.

If the staff feel the CFR is not the most appropriate level of support for you, they may offer you an assessment which may lead to further support from the other mental health services available.

Access in person or also available virtually by going to: or phone Connection on 0800 652 0190 to speak to be put through to the staff on the telephone.


shaftesbury and district carers

Often known simply as “HOPE” OR THE HOPE PROJECT

Find Out More

Is an independent charity working for the benefit of those vulnerable and at risk within our community  Their aim is to provide a safe haven for those who need it, with an opportunity to learn new skills, the chance to work and become part of a team.  There is a wide range of projects to help people get out and about, learn new skills, and enjoy themselves including Hope 2 Bake, Hope 2 Grow and Hope 2 Cycle.  

The HOPE Drop-In Centre is a place that supports people with health and wellbeing problems. It is open 10 am until 5 pm Monday to Wednesday and whilst the Community Front Room is open (based there) 2 pm – 9.45 pm Thursday to Sunday. Here you will also find services including:

Tuesday and Thursday 12 noon – 2 pm – Warm room, soup and a roll with a cuppa.

Citizens Advice Bureau – C.A.B – sessions by appointment,  computer and internet access and tuition. 

First Point You First help with housing, jobs, training, finances and lots more on Mondays 1.30 pm – 3.30pm.

Dorset Mental Health Forum

Find Out More

Telephone: 01305 257172

A Peer-led charity. 

Runs Peer Support Groups in Shaftesbury and Gillingham as well as Blandford and other locations in Dorset.

Find out More about Peer Support Groups

Shaftesbury is every Thursday 2 pm – 4 pm at the Silver Band Hall 

Gillingham is every Monday 2 pm – 4 pm at the Royal British Legion Club. 

Contact for more information.

Provides ADVOCACY services for the whole of Dorset except Poole and Bournemouth.

“Our Mission is to increase understanding of mental health, to support people’s Recovery and to build capacity within services and communities to bring about change.  We deliver our mission through four Strategic Aims:

  • Increasing understanding of mental health through Recovery Education and Co-production.
  • Supporting and enabling people to live the lives they wish to live.
  • Developing capacity and building connected communities across Dorset.
  • Influencing and transforming local services with the collective voice of lived experience.”

The Dorset Wellbeing and Recovery Partnership (WaRP) is a formal, nationally and internationally recognised partnership between the Dorset Mental Health Forum and Dorset HealthCare University NHS Foundation Trust, putting lived experience expertise hand in hand with professional and technical expertise to bring about transformation and change.

The Recovery Education Centre

Find Out More

The Recovery Education Centre (REC) is jointly delivered by Dorset HealthCare and Dorset Mental Health Forum. 

“The centre co-develops and co-delivers educational based courses focusing on recovery, wellbeing and shared learning, bringing together the expertise of professionals and people with lived experience.”

“Our courses are available to people with personal experience of mental health difficulties as well as carers, friends, family, and supporters including staff and they are FREE to attend.

The focus is on shared learning, self-determination and choice. The REC provides opportunity to explore and understand experiences and to recognise and develop skills and tools which may help in your recovery journey.”


Courses are sometimes held in Shaftesbury, Gillingham or Sturminster Newton as well as a bit further away in Blandford and Sherborne and many in the rest of Dorset.

Titles include: Introducing Recovery; Emotion Management; Mindful Living; Understanding Depression and Anxiety; An Introduction to Asperger’s Syndrome, Understanding Unusual Experiences; Managing and Maintaining Work and lots more.

Autumn Term timetable 2023

Course Descriptions


nhs dorset

Community Mental Health Team (CMHT)

Find Out More

If your mental health problems are more severe you may be referred to the CMHT for adults, which in North Dorset is based upstairs at Abbey View Medical Centre in Shaftesbury.  You cannot refer yourself to this service but will need to see your GP or another professional.

The CMHT (older peoples) Team is based at Westminster Hospital in Shaftesbury.

Older People’s CMHT

Dorset Pain Management Service Logo

Dorset Pain Management Service

Find Out More

“Soaring above Pain”

Mental Health problems often accompany chronic pain.  A multidisciplinary team of Consultants in Pain Medicine, psychologists, psychological therapists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, nurses, therapy assistants  Referral from GP or other primary care practitioner. 

Also PainPals helpline 01202 858 361. run by Peer Mentor, Facebook Group.  Local Groups meet in Shaftesbury, Sherborne and Blandford.

Dorset All Age Eating Disorders Service

Find Out More

01202 492147

Referral from GP or other professional as well as self-referral and parent/guardian referral.

NHS Dorset now undertakes the statutory responsibilities of the former clinical commissioning group (CCG) and is responsible for planning to meet the health care needs of people and communities in Dorset.

They work more closely together across the NHS, local authorities and many others, in what is called the Dorset Integrated Care System (ICS)

NHS Dorset – Find out more

dorset mind

Dorset Mind

Find Out More

“Dorset Mind believes that everyone experiencing a mental health problem should get support and respect”.

Dorset Mind educates, challenges mental health stigma and inequality, and promotes recovery by empowering individuals to develop resilience.

Dorset Mind runs support groups, mentoring, counselling and an accredited one-to-one befriending service that helps people regain confidence and build resilience.  You can find details about the support they provide here.

Eco-in-Mind is a gardening project run in collaboration with the Blackmore Vale Partnership and Shaftesbury in Bloom.

1-2-1 Befriending – Trained volunteers provide 1-2-1 support which helps people increase confidence and self-esteem.

There are no waiting times for these services and you can self-refer via email (found on each page of the Dorset Mind website).  Whilst it might take a little while to match you with a befriender, we offer phone-befriending immediately to help support you.”

Wellbeing groups are mostly held online.  See Dorset Mind website for details.  As well as general Wellbeing Groups there are groups LGBTIQ+, Women and Carers.

See Young people and Mental Health at Work tabs below for more services. 

Social media links:




You tube:

green gang

Green Gang

Find Out More

(recovering Mental Health While Working for the Environment)


Telephone Bob Messer  07419211797


Once a fortnight 10 am – 1 pm.


skills and learning

Skills & Learning

Find Out More

Many courses including LivingWell, a programme of courses specially developed to provide support for people with mild to moderate anxiety or depression.  Courses on Mental Health and psychology as well as art, languages, photography, computers, AgeWell and more.  In our local towns and online.

Call 01202 262300 or 01305 819059.

Helen Gilchrist PT at Poles Ahead Nordic Walking:

  • Nordic Walking Advanced Instructor
  • Advanced Personal Trainer
  • Gym & Outdoor Exercise for Specific Controlled Medical Conditions
  • First Aid Trained
  • GP Referral Qualified for Specific Controlled Medical Conditions
  • Certified Training for Parkinson’s
  • And Over 14 Years Experience…
  • Personal Training Sessions
  • Outdoor Personal Training for Small Groups (3 to 6 people by arrangement)
  • Weekly Nordic Walking Classes
  • Indoor Exercise with Music for Older Adults

    07745 413 94



BAD Co take the profits generated from sales of affordable clothing and accessories and use them to give people access to essential counselling services.

That means every time a purchase is made, this helps someone access lifesaving counselling services.

friends of stour connect

Friends of Stour Connect

Find Out More

​Cafe Connect, Men’s Shed, Hydrotherapy Pool, Connect to Employment, Various Support Groups.  Meals on Wheels, Lunch Club, Charity Shop, Sports space, charity shop, Parkinson’s Dance courses.

Stour View Cl, Sturminster Newton, Dorset, DT10 1JF
Telephone: 01258 472957

Light On

Find Out More

A mental wellbeing campaign by the people of Dorset for Dorset

Light On – Within Reach

Find Out More

Help for those in rural Dorset focusing on Gillingham.

help and kindness logo

Help and Kindness

Find Out More

Comprehensive Directory of Organisations, Services, Groups and Clubs in Dorset.  Search by area, type, keywords.

Shaftesbury Tourism Logo

Shaftesbury Tourism

Find Out More

Has a great “What’s On’ which includes all local groups etc. and not just events for tourists.

Dorset Lavender Farm Project Logo

Dorset Lavender Farm Project

Find Out More

Fiddleford, Sturminster Newton.  Telephone 01258 471194

“We provide care and support, volunteer placements and skills training for adults and young people of all ability levels, through the range of tasks and activities associated with our horticulture, the manufacturing of crops, woodworking, crafts and countryside skills.”

Dorset Local Nature Partnership

Telephone 01305 264620

Natural Choices in Dorset aims to encourage and enable people to improve their physical health and mental well-being through different activities within the natural environment.

Natural Choices is open to all but is particularly beneficial to people who may have been identified with experiencing low risk physical health and/or mental health problems such as those leading sedentary lifestyles who wish to get more active and/or those with low mood, mild anxiety or stress.

Activities such as mindfulness, Park Yoga, gardening, health walks and conservation activities.

Click on the link below:

Activities in North Dorset

stepping into nature logo

Stepping into Nature

Find Out More

Lots of help for activities for mental health and wellbeing.  Help for people with disabilities to access farms and nature.

Chalk and Chase

Find Out More

Lots of help for activities for mental health and wellbeing.

Specific Help


Autism  Unlimited

Telephone: 01202 483360

Information and support, Training.


Dorset Healthcare Community Adult Asperger’s Service

Telephone: 01202 605875


Dorset Adult Asperger’s Support including Autism/ASD

Online chats Tuesdays 7.20 – 8.30 pm. 

Telephone number 07818 073390

Dorset Adult Aspergers Support is a Peer Support Group.  In normal times DAAS meets in Poole and Dorchester but due to Covid meetings are currently online, autistic friendly typed chat, Tuesdays at 7.30 pm and zoom meeting once a month.



Based in Blandford

NOCS provides support, development opportunities and fun for people with high levels of anxiety and difficulties with social interaction, particularly due to autism spectrum disorder (ASD) such as Asperger’s or mental health challenges.

Co-op Funeralcare Bereavement Counselling

Shaftesbury branch

Telephone: 01747 858968


The Martinsey Isle Trust

Sturminster Newton Drop in Centre

“Solace for the lonely and bereaved and a place for those who would like some fun or interest in an informal setting.”

Telephone: 01258 475125



Children/young people who are bereaved or facing loss.


Dorset Open Door

Dorset Open Door is a Dorset support service from the CCG, Dorset Healthcare Foundation Trust, Dorset Mental Health Forum, and 3rd party organisations which has been set up for those who have been bereaved during Covid-19 and also for families who are bereaved by suicide. Dorset Open Door is a first point of contact to find support from the right organisation and will guide people through the process.

Dorset Open Door can be reached by phone on 01305 361 361 or email on

The service is open Monday to Friday from 9.30am to 4.30pm.

BOOBSBreast Cancer Awareness, based in Shaftesbury

Boobs can put ladies with a diagnosis in touch with others locally who have fought or are fighting the battle to provide emotional support.  Informal coffee morning once a month. Private online support through Facebook.

Telephone 07873 326495

or 07763 406560


Stalbridge SCARS

Stalbridge Cancer Recovery and Support Group

Monthly meeting for a friendly, confidential and comfortable environment, cuppa, cake, Current cancer patients, those that have recovered from cancer and family and friends who may find they also need support to come to terms with the life-changing effects of a cancer diagnosis.


Tel. 07961 027089

(dedicated group mobile) (Monday to Friday 10am – 4pm )


Dorset Cancer Care Foundation

Financial aid and advice, support, counselling.

Carer Support Dorset

Carer Support Dorset is open Mon-Thurs 9.30am-4.30pm, Fri 9.30am-4pm.

Call 0800 368 8349 or email if you need support or advice on anything related to your caring role.

Register as a Carer

Lots of information, carer’s podcast.

Here to talk service 

To register go online or contact using the details above.


Dorset Healthcare

Lots of general information.


Carers Clinics are run at GP practices. 

Contact the Social Prescribing teams or just ask the receptionist.  See contact details above.

For Blackmore Vale Practice call 07825 691508


Rethink Dorset Carers Support Service (Mental Health)

Dorset Carers Support offers advice, information and peer support for people who look after someone living with mental illness


Ingrid Leggatt, Service Manager Tel. 07484901532

Rethink Mental Illness Advice Service: 9.30 am – 4 pm M-F.  Tel. 0300 5000 927

Rethink Drop In Sessions on Zoom.


Gillingham and Shaftesbury Carers Support Group (for carers of those with mental illness)

10.30 am – 11.30 am

2nd Wednesday of the month at Gillingham Community Church, Wessex House, 8 High Street, SP8 4AG.

4th Wednesday at Father’s House, Shaftesbury, SP7 8PH


Dorset Mental Health Carers Support Line. 

Call a Peer Specialist Carer on 01305 340045

or email:


Parents/Carers Support Group

Mondays 9.30 – 11.30 at Stour Connect, Sturminster Newton

Telephone: 01258 471359


Carers Support Group

Operated by Blackmore Vale Health Champions.  Last Tuesday of the month 10.30 – 12.30 at Sturminster Christian Fellowship 07825 691508


The Leonardo Trust

Tel.  01202 698325

The Leonardo Trust is an independent charity set up in 2001 to help people in Dorset who care for a sick or disabled relative.


Dorset Council

Telephone: 01305 251000

Out of Hours Emergency number:

Telephone: 01305 858250

Carers Assessment Request:  Telephone: 01305 221016 

Carers Case Worker – Local Contact 01747 859120.  Specialist worker.

Counselling for Carers:  Telephone: 01305 221016,  requires assessment by Carers Case worker or similar to be accessed.

Short Break Service via assessment by Dorset Council staff.


Dorset Accessible Homes Service (DAHS)

Telephone: 0333 003 0010


Dorset Listening Service.  For people over 50 and Carers.

Call Tina Damon on 07969141837 or email



FOCUS – Befriending and Mentoring can join you up with someone to regularly talk to as a befriender (phone or face to face) or with a mentor who is an experienced carer themselves.

Call the team on 07716 991 618


Care Providers

Bramley Homecare Ltd, Shaftesbury

Telephone: 01747 855844

Homestead Care, Gillingham

Telephone: 01747 228971

Mulberry Court, Gillingham

Telephone: 01747 822241

My Life Living Assistance, Gillingham

Telephone: 01747 826505

Wisteria Care, Gillingham

Telephone: 01747 852107

Caring Hands at Home

Offers support for people living in Shaftesbury or nearby, in their own home, with tailored services to provide you or your loved ones the very best of care.  Contact Jackie today 07787 517975,

Agincare Domiciliary Care

Covers Shaftesbury, Gillingham and the whole of north Dorset.  Includes 24 hour live-in care.

Horizon Homecare.

County-wide service based in Poole


Bluebird Care

Tel. 01747 441296


Angel Holistic Care.

Dementia Care Specialist, Angela Corbin RGN.  01747 359017, 07539173903,

Sturminster Newton Hydrotherapy Pool


Stour View Hydrotherapy Pool, Sturminster Newton.

Proven to be effective for the treatment of a variety of conditions including back pain, fibromyalgia, arthritis, autism, musculoskeletal conditions, rehab following surgery, neurological conditions, strokes, head injury and many more.  Friendly team supervise 30 minute or 60 minute sessions.  No medical referral is required, just book online and pay as you go, or save with a block of sessions.


Angela Young Homoeopathy

Bach Flower Remedies, Marnhull


Liz Meyer, Holistic Therapist,



Jennifer Pymm Aromatherapy,

West Melbury SP7 0BU

01747 855141, 07807 048708


Tanya Green Aromatherapy


Tel. 01258 820410



Sports Massage, Pilates, Acupuncture, Running Biomechanics, Bike Fit, Body conditioning, Hip, Knee and back classes, Nutrition. At Abbey View Medical Centre Shaftesbury. Tel. 01747 856719

Do you need help with collecting prescriptions, shopping or similar because of illness or self-isolation?  If so contact:

For Sturminster Newton & Marnhull

Contact Friends of Stour Connect, Stour View Close, Sturminster Newton DT10 1JF

Telephone 01258 471359, email:

or contact the Social Prescribing team by emailing: or contact the reception at  Sturminster Newton Medical Centre Telephone: 01258 474500 or Marnhull 01747 856700 and ask for Social Prescribing Support.



Contact Gillingham Community Kindness on 01747 834330 and ask for Social Prescribing Support or email:

Or Gillingham Town Council, School Road, Gillingham, SP8 4QR, email:, telephone 01747 823588



Contact Shaftesbury Community Kindness 

Abbey View Medical Centre 01747 856700 and ask for Social Prescribing Support.or email:


To contact Dorset Council for help call 01305 221000, Mon – Fri 8.30am to 5.00pm. Email: Write to: Dorset Direct, County Hall, Colliton Park, Dorchester, DT1 1XJ 

Children’s Services Tel: 01305 221000 Children’s Advice and Duty Service (ChAD) A single point of contact for safeguarding concerns Tel: 01305 228866

 The Adult Social Care Out of Hours Service provides emergency cover and access to essential services when our daytime services are closed. The service also gives information and advice and, where necessary, makes visits to further assess needs and provides services Out of hours call 01305 858250 5pm – 8am Mon – Thurs; 4pm Fri – 8am Mon. 


Carer Support Dorset (CSD) Provides support for adult and young carers of people living in the Dorset Council area, Tel: 0800 368 8349 E-mail: or visit

See main Local Support page for information about Steps to Wellbeing and other NHS Services



Relationship, Family, Young People & Children Counselling

Shaftesbury Relate – Westminster Hospital., 01302 380900


Which Therapy or Therapist?

It can be hard to find the right therapy/therapist for you.  For a start there are different professionals – Counsellors, Psychotherapists, Psychologists, Life Coaches and Wellbeing Practitioners.  There are also many different kinds of therapies.   The best explanation I can find of these can be found at:

There are different therapies to suit different conditions and diagnoses as well.  If you can, do some research.  The NHS generally provides Counselling, CBT, DBT, Trauma/PTSD therapy (including EMDR if you qualify)  most commonly but there are others. and Wellbeing Practitioners are also common in NHS treatment.  I found elements of ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy) very helpful and this was provided by a psychologist at the Dorset Pain Management Team,

Private Counsellors and Therapists.

If you do not have the means to pay for private counselling then some charities may be able to help such as Shaftesbury based “BaD Co – The Brave and Determined Company”.

Email on

Directories:   -British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapists

You can expect to pay from £40 to £150 for a session.  Some therapists do the first session for free. 



Daisy Maryon

Tisbury, 07894 533558


Brian Ash Hypnotherapy

Tel. 01929 459261, 07823 332895,



CT Life Coaching Ltd (Charlotte Trump)

Fontmell Magna, Tel. 07480 783645

Tim Coupland

Shaftesbury,  Tel. 01747 440786

David Stanton – Individual and group sessions online and in-person

Specialist addiction therapy and general 

or call 07584 711488

Realtime Counselling (Addiction) – Nicky Adams

Shaftesbury, Tel. 07445 427825

Three Counties Counselling and Psychotherapy, Debra Doggrell

Gillingham, 01747 449956

Eleanor P L Pool

Sturminster Newton, 01258 446759

Sarah Sanger

Shaftesbury, 07923 212852

Paula Pyrgos

Shaftesbury (Children, young people and parents), 07549 020693

Clea Stanley

Shaftesbury, 07773 340183

Marianne Taylor

Gillingham, 07552 013241

Anita Woods

Gillingham, 07701 006287

Anna Macklin

Gillingham, 01747 825586

Christopher Rice

Gillingham, 07826 820949

Miranda Jackson

Mere, 07951 692121

Pauline Brown

Henstridge, 07899 721015

Mark Sparrow

Sturminster Newton, 07775 085002

Sarah Lidsey

Shaftesbury, 07506 381191

Ruth Gilbert

Shaftesbury, 07745 267101

Cinzia Altobelli

Shaftesbury, 07487 752465

Jax Beatty

Shaftesbury, 07825 260723

Elizabeth Wareing


Pippa Bealing

Shaftesbury, 07717 723759

Annie Newbury

Shaftesbury, 01747 632082

Victoria Lennane

Gillingham, 07880 728796

Richard Anderson

Gillingham, 07340 004389

Helen Lickerish (Fullstop Therapy)

Gillingham, 01747 825288

Geoff Britten (Elements  Coaching and Counselling)

Gillingham, 01747 831070 or 07738 851068

CoCreate is an arts and wellbeing specialist organisation based in Bournemouth and led by three arts and health professionals. We offer a range of courses and programmes to support mental health recovery, with a focus on creativity, enjoyment and social contact.


Dorset Healthcare Dementia information and Services


Age UK Cognititve Stimulation Therapy Sessions

You can call 01305 269 444 or email


Shaftesbury & District Dementia Friendly Community

Telephone: 01747 852420

Melodies Remembered run by Shaftesbury Dementia Friendly Community Group. 

Fortnightly singing group, Thursday 2pm – 4 pm, Shaftesbury Football Club,

Contact or 07871 665927 or 01747 852420

This provides a way to express yourselves and socialise in a supportive and enjoyable way. So come and join in – all are welcome!

Includes tea / coffee and cakes (for a small donation).


Care Dorset Shaftesbury Plus

Supports people living with dementia in Shaftesbury and surrounding areas and is open Monday- Saturday, 9am-4pm.  Programme of activities and Community Lunch.

Contact 01747 854959 or email


In Jolly Good Company 

‘Jolly Days’ Meet-up

Every other TUESDAY
10 am – 12 pm  Royal British Legion, Coppice Street, Shaftesbury, SP7 8PF.  Booking essential.


Stour Connect, Sturminster Newton

Day Centre in Sturminster Newton 

“Life is for Living” Wednesday 1.30 pm.  Usually art/craft type activities & tea & coffee.

Tel. 01258 472957

Friends of Stour Connect – ‘Life is For Living Group’ lunch club, activities and carer support. 

Tel. 01258 471359,


Gillingham Mindful Memory Cafe 

Alternate Tuesdays at Gillingham Social Club, SP8 4HX – 10 am – 12 noon

Tel. 07910 663392


Men Marching On Group.  Run by MINDFUL.

Meet every other Thursday at Gillingham Social Club, SP8 4HX, 10 am – 12 noon.


Also Mindful cafe in Stalbridge – see

Tel. 07840 424148


The ‘Safe Haven’.  The Malthouse Care Home Bay Road, Gillingham, SP8 4EW.

The ‘Safe Haven’ is an alternative, and preferred, place to a police station for someone, who in a public place, and in a state of confusion due to any form of dementia related illness, to be taken to while they wait for a responsible person to be found, or a means to get home.  Tel. 01747 822667.


ColtenCare Admiral Nurse Team

Dementia UK Admiral Nurses, Helping families face Dementia.

Specialised dementia support to carers, relatives and the local community at Newstone House, Sturminster Newton. 

Practical Advice alongside emotional and psychological support.


Help & Care Dementia Coordinator Service

Help and support for people with memory problems, signposting, support and more.  Tel. 0300 123 1916


Dorset Council Directory


Telephone: 01305 221016



North Dorset Disability Information Service, Gillingham

Tel. 01747 821010.  Buy/hire new and second-hand equipment, Information and Advice, Free NHS hearing and batteries, volunteering opportunities.


Diverse Abilities

Help with Benefits and LPAs.

0300 330 5514


Age UK North, South, West Dorset


Dorset Accessible Homes Service (DAHS)

Telephone: 0333 003 0010



Disability Wessex Advice 

Telephone: 01202 718266



DOTS Disability Training

Independent Occupational Therapy and Training service


Access Dorset

Information and advice and signposting.

Call 01202 771336 – 10 am – 4 pm Mon to Fri


Parkinsons North Dorset Support Group


Dorset ME Support Group

Have been known to have Link Group meetings in Shaftesbury!


Dorset Multiple Sclerosis Society

Tel. 07554882414

Gillingham Branch – 45 Sylvan Way, Gillingham.

Tel. 01747 822732


Stroke Club

Tel. 01747 853428


Dorset Blind Association Tel. 01202 712865. Email.

Gillingham and Shaftesbury Macular Support Group

No one need face macular degeneration alone. Meets 3rd Monday of the month 10.30 am – 12.00 noon. Gillingham Library SP8 4UA Please contact Anne 01747 822 201, helpline 0300 3030 111


Royal Voluntary Service Home Library Service

Dorset Library Service 01305 225 000, Royal Voluntary Service 01305 236 666,


Riding for the Disabled

At Bryanston School, Blandford. Contact: Chairman, Lyn Johnson Tel. 01258 456571, email Chief Instructor, Jackie Abbott Tel. 01258 863683,


Lipreading classes, tutors and counsellors.

Skills and Learning – nearest is Wimborne.

Caroline Court (I think Salisbury) 07877 468450 text only. Email. 


Continence Advisory Service

Information and support, both bladder and bowel, 01305 259 978


Dorset Musculoskeletal Outpatient Physiotherapy Service.

Information for patients, relatives and carers. Westminster Memorial Hospital, Shaftesbury. Tel. 01747 475261



Local contact:  Tel. 01258 474685

HIV Positive

BPD – Body Positive Dorset.

Convidential Help.  01202 297386,

Shaftesbury CMHT (Adult), Abbey View Medical Centre, Shaftesbury,Dorset SP7 8DH Tel: 01747 856711


Shaftesbury CMHT (Older Persons) Melbury Unit, Westminster Hospital, Magdalene Lane, Shaftesbury SP7 8BD, Tel: 01747 851625


North Dorset Community Resource Team, Peacemarsh Surgery, Marlott Road, Gillingham SP8 4FA Tel: 01747 823035


Crisis Response Service.1700 – 2300 Monday to Friday, 0900 – 2300 Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays Tel: 01305 214500. 


Forston Clinic  0900 – 1930 Every Day  01305 361269


Crisis Response & Home Treatment Service, St Ann’s Hospital, 69 Haven Road, Poole BH13 7NL Tel: 01202 609821


Early Intervention in Psychosis Service, 30 Maiden Castle Road, Dorchester, DT1 2ER, Tel: 01305 214500


Early Intervention Service, Seastone House, 49 Alumhurst Road, Westbourne, BH8 4EP, Tel:01202 584336, Email:


Eating Disorders Service, Kimmeridge Court, St Ann’s Hospital, 69 Haven Road, Canford Cliffs, Poole, BH13 7LN, Main service Tel: 01202 492147, Inpatient Tel: 01202 492151, email:


The Dorset Forensic Team

Assesses and treats people with severe mental disorders who present a risk of serious harm to others. The team has a range of specially-trained professionals who see people both in our inpatient unit at St Ann’s Hospital, Poole, and out in the community.  We work closely with Police and Probation services, as part of the multi-agency public protection arrangements (MAPPA), and the service can be accessed only through referrals from MAPPA or secondary care mental health services.  St Ann’s Hospital, 69 Haven Road, Canford Cliffs, Poole, BH13 7LN, Tel: 01202 492066


Adult Psychology Service

Accepts clients from any CMHT referral.  Has courses such as “Understanding Unusual Experiences”


Inpatient Units (Adult) – 

Linden Unit, Westhaven Hospital, Radipole Lane, Weymouth DT4 0QE, Tel: 01305 787274


Waterston Ward, Forston Clinic, Acute Assessment Unit, Charminster, Dorchester, DT2 9TB, Tel: 01305 361269


St Ann’s Hospital, 69 Haven Road, Canford Cliffs, Poole, BH13 7LN, Tel: 01202 708881


Chine Ward, St Ann’s Hospital, Female Treatment Unit, Tel: 01202 492090


Harbour Ward, St Ann’s Hospital, Male Treatment Unit, Tel: 01202 492445


Seaview Ward, St Ann’s Hospital, Mixed Assessment Ward, Tel: 01202 492461


Haven Unit, St Ann’s Hospital, Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), Tel: 01202 492137 (Male), Tel: 01202 492442 (Female)


Twynham Unit, St Ann’s Hospital, Low Secure Unit, Tel: 01202 492152


Inpatient Units (Older Persons)

Betty Highwood Unit, Blandford Community Hospital, Milldown Road, Blandford, DT11 7DD, Tel: 01258 394016 / 01305 361716


Chalbury Unit, Weymouth Community Hospital, Melcombe Avenue, Weymouth, DT4 7TB

Tel: 01305 762525


Melstock House, Forston Clinic, Charminster, DT2 9TB, Tel: 01305 361282


Alderney Hospital (Organic Mental Health), Ringwood Road, Parkstone, Poole, BH12 4NB, Tel: 01202 735537


Alumhurst Ward, St Ann’s Hospital, 69 Haven Road, Canford Cliffs, Poole, BH13 7LN

Tel: 01202 492098


Kings Park Hospital (Organic Mental Health), Gloucester Road, Boscombe, Bournemouth, BH7 6JE, Tel: 01202 303757


Intensive Psychological Therapies Service (IPTS), Branksome Clinic, Layton Road, Parkstone, Poole, BH12 2BJ, Tel: 01202 584120


Perinatal Mental Health Service, Mother and Baby Inpatient Facility, Florence House, 49 Alumhurst Road, Bournemouth, BH4 8EP, Tel: 01202 584329


Perinatal Community Team, 0900 – 1700 Monday to Friday (excluding Bank Holidays) 

Tel: 01202 584329


Primary Care Mental Health Services (Psychological Services) North and West Dorset

The Conifers, Poundbury West Industrial Estate, Dorchester, DT1 2PG, Tel: 0300 790 6828


Psychiatric Intensive Care Units (PICU) Haven Unit, St Ann’s Hospital, 69 Haven Road, Canford Cliffs, Poole, BH13 7LN, Tel: 01202 492862


Psychiatric Rehabilitation

Glendenning, 30 Maiden Castle Road, Dorchester, DT1 2ER, Tel: 01305 214521

Nightingale Court, 49 Alumhurst Road, Westbourne, Bournemouth  BH4 8EP, Tel: 01202 584301

Nightingale House, 49 Alumhurst Road, Westbourne, Bournemouth BH4 8EP, Tel: 01202 584301

LiveWell Dorset

A free health service provided by Dorset Council.  

They can help guide you to a healthier lifestyle through advice and coaching.  

Stop Smoking, Lose Weight, Drink Less, Get Active.  

Tel: 01305 233 105.  

Email:, Free phone 0800 840 1628

Facebook LiveWell Dorset, Twitter @LWDorset

Free happiness and wellbeing assessment at



North Drug and Alcohol Services

Woodcock Court, Queens Street, Gillingham, SP8 4DZ

Telephone:  0800 043 4656


ARA Recovery for All

“We are the now National Gambling Treatment Service (NGTS) providers for the whole of the South West of England (including Dorset) and Wales. Ara offer free and confidential advice about gambling, together with free one-to-one counselling for people experiencing problems with their own gambling, or that of a family member. We also offer various training modules around gambling harms which is relevant for many organisations.”


Clouds House, East Knoyle, Wiltshire.

In-patient treatment for all types of addiction, private, NHS and charity funded patients. 

In addition to treatment for drugs (prescribed and non-prescribed), alcohol and gambling, there is treatment for gaming, sexual and some food related addictions.



Drug and Alcohol Rehabs in Dorset

Lots of information on a comprehensive website that offers guidance and support for people experiencing problems with substance misuse and co-occurring mental health problems in Dorset.  Telephone 0800 140 4690.  “When you contact us, we shall walk you through a quick but important assessment. This assessment allows us to match your needs to a suitable treatment provider in Dorset” Outpatient and residential services.  Private Service, some costs are given on the website.

OK Rehab

Website that offers guidance and support for people experiencing problems with substance misuse and co-occurring mental health problems with help to find local services.

StepChange Debt Help

Specialist team to offer extra support if you have mental health problems.

Tel. 0800 188 1111 or call Gillingham Community Church on 01747 825611


Christians against poverty (CAP)

Free debt counselling in your community. 

Tel. 0800 328 0006

Or call at Open House, Father’s House, Shaftesbury.


Diverse Abilities

Dorset’s Disability charity can help with claims for Benefits such as PIP, DLA etc.

0300 330 5514


Dorset Council Cost of Living Help – Signposting webpage

LEAP (Local Energy Advice Partnership) Scheme.

Free advice service for people receiving means and non means tested benefits.


LiveWell Dorset

A free health service provided by Dorset Council.  

They can help guide you to a healthier lifestyle through advice and coaching.  

Stop Smoking, Lose Weight, Drink Less, Get Active.  

Tel: 01305 233 105.  

Email:, Free phone 0800 840 1628

Facebook LiveWell Dorset, Twitter @LWDorset

Free happiness and wellbeing assessment at



Download the WaitLess App  which has up-to-the-minute travel info and the latest waiting times at Dorset’s urgent and emergency care services direct to your pone. #WaitLessDorset


PALS Have your say….

Online Comment form for complaints and compliments – Dorset Healthcare University NHS Foundation Trust.

Email or  Tel.  PALS Freephone 0800 587 4997, Complaints team: 01202 277024


Healthwatch Dorset

Need information about a local health or social care service?

Want to know how to raise a concern or a complaint?

0300 111 0102,


Helpful Hounds Assistance Dogs


Sturminster Newton Hydrotherapy Pool


Stour View Hydrotherapy Pool, Sturminster Newton.

Proven to be effective for the treatment of a variety of conditions including back pain, fibromyalgia, arthritis, autism, musculoskeletal conditions, rehab following surgery, neurological conditions, strokes, head injury and many more.  Friendly team supervise 30 minute or 60 minute sessions.  No medical referral is required, just book online and pay as you go, or save with a block of sessions.


Menopause Support Group

Peer Support with a cuppa!  Blackmore Vale Practice in Shaftesbury and Sturminster Newton.  


Member of Parliament

North Dorset – Simon Hoare

01258 452585


Weldmar Hospicecare

Offers support for people nearing the end of their life and/or have complex palliative care needs and their families and carers.  Counselling and Wellbeing support.


WESTMINSTER MEMORIAL HOSPITAL, SHAFTESBURY Abbey Walk, Shaftesbury, SP7 8BD, Tel. 01747 851 535

Minor Injuries Unit (MIU) Mon – Fri 09.00 – 18.00, Sat/Sun 10.00 – 16.00, Bank Holidays 10.00 – 16.00. Last MIU patient will be seen 30 minutes before closing. X-ray facilities: Mon – Fri 09.15 – 12.30 and 13.30-16.30 (Closed Wednesdays) Visiting times: 15.00 – 16.30 daily and 18.30 – 20.00 daily.

Clinics at Westminster Hospital Outpatients’ Department Low Vision / Diabetic Eyes / Foot clinic / RACE clinic / Parkinson’s / Orthotics / Rheumatology / Child Diabetic clinic / Paediatrics / Older Persons Community Mental Health Eye clinics / Glaucoma clinics / Haematology / Urology / Audiology / Aural care / Oral surgery / Orthoptist / Dermatology / General Surgery (coli-rectal) / Orthopaedics / Obstetrics / Pain clinic / Stroke clinic / MS clinic / Dietician.

Shaftesbury Integrated Community Rehabilitation Team. Tel. 01747 475253. 24 hour answerphone. Email

Community Support Worker Service Short term support for people allowing them to stay in their own home. Referral only, support given for a maximum of 7 days. Referral form available at

Rapid Access to Care for the Elderly (RACE) Clinic Consultant Geriatrician led clinic. Assessment clinic for frail older patients. By referral only. Telephone 01747 475236


Blackmore Vale Partnership – Abbey View Medical Centre Shaftesbury, The Exchange, Sturminster Newton, Marnhull and Fontmell Magna

Tel. 01747 856700


Gillingham Medical Practice – The Barn and Peacemarsh Surgeries

Tel. 01747 824201

And 01747 834330


Silton – The Surgery

Tel. 01747 840226.


Tisbury Surgery,

Park Road, Tisbury, Salisbury SP3 6LF

Tel: 01747 870204


Hindon Surgery 

Tel. 01747 820222


Child Okeford Surgery– The Blandford Group Practice.  

Tel. 01258 860687


If you live in another local area of Dorset try

Dorset Mind’s workplace training programme,

Dorset Mind Works,

Helps employers support employees with their mental health, reduce presenteeism and is proven to benefit profitability.


Gambling training, advice, information

Free from Citizens Advice for front-line staff, advisers and managers about the risks of gambling and what support is available and free training to organisations to identify harm in their clients and help people get the support they need.


Total Wellbeing Matters

Mental Health Awareness and First Aid at Work training for businesses and individuals.


LiveWell @ Work

Free interactive PDF welcome pack.

OVER 50s

Age Concern North Dorset


For Sturminster Newton and surrounding villages.

See website for Digital Champion Volunteers, the Digital Hotline – finding out how to get better broadband, getting online for the first time or using new technology such as video conferencing.

Offers befriending, counselling as well as more practical things to the over 50s

Open 5 days a week 10-2

Telephone: 01258 475582


Age UK North South and West Dorset (for Shaftesbury and Gillingham and surrounding area)

Tel. 01305 269 444

or email:

Home Support, Out and About Support for over 65s

Travelling Companions Service, handy person, help with welfare benefits.

Age UK Reach Out Befrienders NSW Dorset, tel. 01305 269444

Online Classes – Cognitive Stimulation Therapy, Exercise and an online Coffee Morning weekly.  Contact


Dorset Listening Service

Call Tina Damon on 07969141837 or email

“Our aim is to help and support you to address any emotional difficulties such as:
Depression, Bereavement, Adjusting to Retirement, Loss of independence, Loneliness, Relationship difficulties, Declining Health, Failing Memory, Unresolved Conflicts, Facing the Reality of Death.”


Dorset Support At Home British Red Cross Independent Living Services

For 65 and over, referral from a health professional.

For further information tel. 01305 214430 or 01202 656148.




Age friendly communities Friendship Line. If you’re feeling lonely, or just a bit out of sorts, then give the PramaLife friendship line a call. A team of volunteers would love to chat with you.
01202 022987, 8 am – 9 pm seven days a week.


Shaftesbury Plus (Tricuro)

(Restricted service due to Covid-19)

Day service – Phone 01747 854959 

Trinity Centre, Bimport, Shaftesbury, SP7 8BW


Stour Connect (Tricuro) Sturminster Newton

Stour View Cl, Sturminster Newton DT10 1JF

01258 472957

Day Service

See more on Clubs and Organisations Download below.  



Parents and carers of 5-19 year olds in Dorset can access support by using this confidential text messaging service run by the School Nursing Team.  Advice about issues such as toileting, sleep, development, behaviour, healthy eating, mental health, bullying, school refusal and exam stress.

Simply text 07312263131.  9 am -4 pm, M-F (excluding bank and school holidays).  Responding within one working day.



“DorPIP works holistically with families, statutory providers and third sector organisations in order to provide early help in the community through specialist parent-infant therapy that is unavailable elsewhere. “


Homestart North Dorset


Telephone: 01258 473038

Supports struggling families where there is at least one child under 5. 

Mothers in Mind  Group for new mums who, for various reasons, are finding life tricky.


Shaftesbury Children’s Centre and North Dorset Locality

Tel: 01258 474036

North Dorset locality also has a base at Sturminster Newton:

Bath Road
Sturminster Newton
DT10 1DR​​


If you’re worried about the immediate safety of a child or young person contact the

Children’s Advice and Duty Service:

Telephone: 01305228866



Counselling for Families, Tel. 01302 380900


Maternity Matters in Dorset

A website to help guide you through pregnancy, birth and beyond in Dorset.


Family Counselling Trust

The Family Counselling Trust provides advice and guidance to families who have concerns about their children’s behaviour, emotions and family relationships.


Family Mediation Service

01305 751781


Active Play Therapies

Independent occupational therapy service, specialised in working with families with children who have sensory integration difficulties, emotional and mental health difficulties, learning difficulties, picky eating and neurodevelopmental conditions such as autism and ADHD. 

Assessments, therapy and training flexibly to families, children, schools and others. No referral criteria or age limits (also see adults with Aspergers and/ or sensory integration difficulties).

Parents, schools and professionals can refer  and they will advise on whether their services would be of help. 

Also Health Transition: Support for children to adults so can support a family through the difficult time of transitioning from children’s services to adult services. 


Dorset Parent Carer Council

“Our aim is to improve services for our children and young people by ensuring that families’ voices are heard by planners and decision-makers. Signposting and communication are key to what we do and wherever possible, we aim to work in co-production.

The work we do shapes local, regional and national services and policy.”


NHS Maternity Matters Dorset

Emotional Wellbeing

Information and an emotional wellbeing animation.

Dorset Healthcare Perinatal Mental Health


Health Visiting Service


Dorset Mums

Things to do, events etc.


Dorset Family Information Service

Lots of information, childcare, what’s on, services.


Targeted Youth Workers

Engage with young people and assess if they are at risk of harm.  Actively explore the places, spaces, and situations in the area where young people may be out and about.  To get in touch email, tel. 01258 474036.

To find a private psychiatrist have a look at:

For general information:

The nearest to our area are in Salisbury including New Hall Hospital, Poole/Bournemouth and Dorchester.

It is also possible to have a consultation online, e.g.

For either appointment costs will be (ballpark) £350 for the first 60 – 75 minute appointment after which a full report and diagnosis (if possible) will be made and £180 – £300 for follow-ups. (Poole Clinic) gives a good guide to what you can expect to pay for Psychiatrists, Psychologists and other therapists.


The Farming Community Network (FCN) 

Available to anyone who needs help in the farming community.

Local volunteers and representatives, downloadable directory from the website.


Countrymen UK

Group for retired farming community and similar run at Rylands Farm near Sherborne.  

Sherborne Deanery Rural Chaplaincy

Tel. 01963 23570 or 07966 754110

“Being with, listening to and supporting farming and rural people in their daily lives.”  They work as a chaplaincy for everyone across West Dorset and far beyond.  They are in Salisbury Livestock Market, supporting farming and rural business.



“we endeavour to give a voice to the Gypsies and Travellers of Dorset”


Adult Social Care, Dorset Council:

01305 221016, Out of hours 01305 858250

For help with living at home, advice about finding and paying for care, how to apply or renew a blue badge, how to report a concern about someone who is vulnerable:

Dorset Council Area Office for enquiries about benefits, council tax

Housing:  01258 454111


Open House,

Shaftesbury – Food aid, Benefit advice, Housing Support, Debt and budgeting support, Job Club.  

At Father’s House, Shaftesbury  Tuesdays 10 am – 2 pm

Tel. 01747 852994 or email:

Also Open Fridge and StoreHouse for furniture.


Also ‘HOPE Project’ – See information above.


Open Door

Gillingham Community Church,  High Street SP8 4AG,

Drop in sessions Mondays and Thursdays 10 am – 12 for help, support, food parcels, advice on debt, benefits, housing and more.

Gillingham 01747 834337


North Dorset Citizens Advice

The Courtyard Newbury Court, Gillingham, Dorset SP8 4QX, 

Telephone 01747 835016, to book an appointment or visit

Appointments Mon, Wed 10-3, Friday 10-1 pm


Dorset Advice Line 0344 245 1291

Drop in Shaftesbury Library Wednesday 10 am – 1 pm


Sturminster Newton medical centre Monday morning (appointment through reception)


First Point Dorset IPS Service run by You Trust is for people from the age of 16

They can help with:

Preventing homelessness, housing issues, health and wellbeing, getting out and about in the community, volunteering, training and employment, leaving hospital, daily living, act as an advocate. 

Contact or Dorset Integrated Prevention & Support Service on 0330123 2550

Or drop in (free but book ahead using contact details above) at Shaftesbury: 

Hope Projects Units 4-6, Plot 25c Longmead Industrial Estate SP7 8PL Mondays 13:30 – 15:30.


Dorset Work Matters

Help with getting back into work (and lots more) for those under a CMHT 

Click here 


Dorset Volunteer Centre

01305 269214



Healthy Homes Dorset

Free, impartial energy-saving advice.  Here to help people live in warmer, healthier homes with lower heating bills.  Call 0300 003 7023

Find out about the Priority Services Register if a power cut would put you at risk


Do you feel Safe and Well in your home?

Dorset and Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service offer FREE safe and well advice.  For free safe and well advice or to check you eligibility for a visit see website.  Or Freephone 0800 038 2323.


Weldmar Hospicecare in North Dorset

Day Service at Westminster Memorial Hospital in Shaftesbury on Fridays 10am – 3 pm for those who are approaching the end of their life and/have complex palliative care needs.  Blandford Community Hospital on Fridays.  Offers lots of activities, creative arts, complementary therapies, word games, quizzes and more.  Freshly made to order lunch, fresh cakes and drinks (including wine and sherry!  Lunch is £3 – the rest is free.  Referral from a healthcare professional.  Transport provided if needed.


The Martinsey Isle Trust Art of Living and Dying.

Hopes to enrich life through open, honest and supported discussion around dying, funeral choices and bereavement; and through providing social activities to bring people and other charities together in the local community.  Supported by ‘Safe Journey Home’.

Tel. Judith on 01258 475125.


Skills and Learning Employment Learning Hubs

Gillingham Library, SP8 4UA, Friday 10 am– 1 pm

Lindlar Hall, Shaftesbury, Friday 1.30 pm – 3.30 pm

For more information Tel. 01202 262300


StoreHouse Shaftesbury

A community project offering free good quality second hand household furniture and appliances to local families.  Free local delivery.  Eligibility criteria.

Open on Tuesdays at Father’s House Shaftesbury 10 am 2 pm. 

Tel. 01747 852994, email:


North Dorset Police

Police website:

To report crimes call 101 or in an emergency 999.  email:  

Crimestoppers anonymously – 0800 555 111


Gillingham Foodbank.

Gillingham Community Church, Station Road, Gillingham SP8 4PY

Tel. 07895 148094, email:

Open Monday and Thursday from 10.00 am to 12.00 noon.

At the foodbank centre we offer tea/coffee, and toys, all within a friendly relaxed environment.  We have time to listen, pray for you if you would like, and arrange for other professional help and advice including counselling, advocacy, debt advice, budgeting, Citizens’ Advice Bureau, Steps to Learning Advisors and housing support. 


The Vale Pantry 

Sturminster Newton

Weekly membership of £6 a visit, members can choose a selection of food with a value of approx. £20-£25 each week. The pantry’s purpose is to help people who need a little bit of help top up their weekly shop, and food available will include fresh fruit and veg, store cupboard favourites, bread, dairy products and frozen telephone 07968 348481  or email


Care at Home


Julian House

Charity supporting vulnerable and at-risk people, including supported housing and support for travelling communities. 

Outreach service in Dorset, many services in Wiltshire and Bath. 

Tel. 01225 354650




Friends of Guys Marsh Prison

Support for prisoners’ families as well as rehabilitation of prisoners.


ThreeSixty Inclusive

Tel. 01202 925657. 

Support for people with learning and/or mental health issues within their own home’s and local communities. 

Working exclusively with people who use either direct payments, personal health budgets or individual service funds (or any combination of those), we believe that flexible funding is the key to designing and building good lives. 

In helping people to develop their skills, to volunteer and, where they want to, move into paid employment we use an academically developed approach known as the ‘Burley Model’.


Magna Housing Association

Provides help and support for Tenants and others such as Home Helps, Gardening, Handymen, Support Advisors, Careline.


Free Digital Advice.  Volunteer Digital Champion Service.  Gillingham Saturdays 9.30 am – 1 pm.  Sturminster Newton Learning Centre Monday and Wednesday 9.30 am – 1 pm.  Or call Digital Hotline on 01305 221048 for help over the phone.


Skills & Learning Train-&-Grow. Training solutions to help individuals and business improve skills and performance. Tel. 01202 262300.


NewTech – Sturminster Newton Community Learning Centre. Use our computer/wi-fi facilities; get help & advice; problems solved; basic & advanced learning. Lydden Room, The Exchange, Old Market Hill, Sturminster Newton DT10 1QU 01258 475272 (when open) or The Exchange 01258 475137, email


Community Catalysts Do you have an idea that could be helpful to older people or those with health needs? Are you already helping people and would like to do more? Contact or Tel. 07407789131 Not sure if this goes as far north as Shaftesbury. Definitely covers Sturminster Newton



Community Transport Service

Tel. 01258 472164


Shaftesbury Car Link

Community Transport Scheme.  One of fee and then driver expenses.  Wheelchair accessible vehicle available.  Tel Martin or June Hull on 07763 426664.  email.

Mental Health Chaplaincy Services in Dorset

“Chaplaincy services are available to all patients, visitors and staff across all Dorset HealthCare sites and services.   Ill health often makes people reflect on what is important to them, and chaplaincy is here to meet your spiritual and religious needs – whatever your beliefs. You may wish to speak with someone who understands the language of faith, or talk with someone about things that are important to you. We can make contact with faith communities and leaders on your behalf.  We have ‘spirituality leads’ at a number of sites. The Trust Chaplain visits all our sites and units on a regular basis, and is supported by chaplaincy volunteers.”

Contact the Trust Chaplain – Rev Mike Oates (Chaplaincy Office) at 01202 492072


Ani Dolkar Meditation and Mindfulness

Ani Dolkar (Sophia) is a trauma-informed meditation teacher and Buddhist nun running fortnightly meditation and mindfulness sessions at The Quaker Meeting Rooms, Shaftesbury. She is a qualified counsellor and is also available for 1:1 sessions to discuss more personal issues, enabling tailored meditation and mindfulness practices to the individual where appropriate. All of her sessions are inclusive and available to anyone from any background and with any preferences. Sessions are offered on a donation scale with those unable to meet the suggested donation amount still welcome to join.

Evening class suggested donation £10. 
1:1 suggested donation £20-£30. 
Booking is preferred but not necessary. 
For more information, please contact Ani Dolkar at or text on 07936888776


Natural Healing Energy

Applied Energy Flow Healing, Reiki, The Honey Healing Method, Counselling with less talking, Meditation classes, Reiki workshops., Tel. 07941 031427.


Jennifer Pymm,

Shaftesbury – Aromatherapy and Reiki,


Dee Dade,

Gillingham – Massage and Reiki,


The Space, Shaftesbury (Motcombe)

Yoga, Reflexology, Pilates, Meditation, Breathwork, Aromatherapy, Mindfulness

Also runs retreats at venues such as Park Place Pastoral Centre, PO17 5HA.  


The Yoga Within

(runs Shaftesbury Wellness sessions at Castle Hill)


Anna Bruce – Body Talk, 

Telephone 078026 99062

Reiki, Reflexology, Naturopathy, Energy Medicine, Indian Head Massage, Aromatherapy Therapeutic Massage.


Othona Community

On the coast near Burton Bradstock in West Dorset.  3 – 7 day Retreats programme.  Christian Community. Prices from £60 depending what you can afford or less if you qualify for a bursary.


Armed Forces Community Health and Wellbeing Team

(Dorset Healthcare University NHS Foundation Trust)


Telephone: 01202 584428

The Armed Forces Community includes:  Regular Personnel, Reservists, Veterans, Families of all these, bereaved.  

Wellbeing Gateway – an initial meeting to establish what help is needed.

Wellbeing Groups/Courses


Soldiers’, Sailors’ & Airmen’s Families Association (SSAFA)

If you are a member of the Armed Forces, a veteran or a military family, and you need help then please don’t hesitate to get in contact

Telephone: 0800 731 4880


Royal British Legion, Coppice Street, Shaftesbury

Telephone: 01747 850898 or 854765

Royal British Legion Club, School Lane, Gillingham. 

01747 822439

Sturminster Newton Royal British Legion

Marnhull Royal British Legion

Stalbridge RBL Club

01963 362995



Specialist support for the Armed Forces by web and email.


Armed Forces Covenant – Dorset Council

Dorset County – Paragon integrated domestic abuse service.  Paragon work with women, men and children.  

Free phone: 0800 032 5204 (please be aware that calls to 0800 numbers may show up on itemised phone bills).




STARS – Sexual Trauma and Recovery Service – Supporting all survivors on their journey of recovery.

Is a pan-Dorset charity that offers one to one support, free of charge, for anyone at any age or gender who lives, works or studies in Dorset and has experienced any form of sexual violence at any time in their lives.

General Enquiries:  01202 308840

Helpline:  01202 308855

Unfortunately shut to adult referrals until October 2022



24 hour helpline:

0800 0325204

North Dorset Women’s Refuge: Tel. 01747 858555

Dorset Refuge for Men, women with teenage boys over 15, LGBTQ+ couples and couples fleeing Honour Based Violence.   Tel. 01329 825930.


Courses for Survivors

There are courses available for people who have experienced domestic abuse and live in Dorset. The courses are run by experts working in domestic abuse services.

Find out more about the awareness courses


Dorset Police Advice on Domestic Abuse


Victim Support

An independent charity who provide one to one support for all victims of crime, including support for male and female victims of domestic abuse, historical sexual violence and for children affected by crime. Support is free, confidential and tailored to your needs.

Southwest Victim Care Unit call 0300 3030 163

National helpline 0808 1689 111

Live chat – this is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The service is anonymous, confidential and free to use. To access it please visit the Victim Support website or visit the Victim Care website.


Sexual assault

The Shores – Dorset SARC (Sexual Assault Referral Centre)

Providing a comprehensive service to men, women and children who have been raped or sexually assaulted.

Call: 01202 552 056


Survivor Pathway – sexual violence support service

The Dorset survivor pathway is a guide for anyone wanting to know more about specialist sexual violence support services in Dorset.



Paragon Telephone helpline:

0800 032 5204 

A Paragon Stalking Advocate will talk with you about stalking and carry out a risk assessment with you. Please phone if you think you are being stalked or harassed.


Dorset Council 

Help for those who have experienced domestic abuse.


Prejudice Free Dorset

Resources on hate crime  and more.

extra information

Social Activities in North Dorset

Scroll to Top

keep up to date with the news

(occasional email newsletter)