NHS Northumberland Talking Matters


Who Are We?

NHS Northumberland Talking Matters offers a free psychological treatment, support and recovery service for the people of Northumberland who are experiencing depression, anxiety, stress and other mental health related problems.

More About Us

Our aim is to ensure people in Northumberland can get quick and easy access into personalised treatment to support their recovery and live life to the full.

NHS Northumberland Talking Matters is an Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) Service which runs as a partnership between Sunderland Counselling Service, Mental Health Matters and Efficacy.

What Do We Offer?

We are proud to offer the following types of talking therapies at NHS Northumberland Talking Matters:

Guided Self Help

Guided Self Help is a Low Intensity Intervention provided by Psychological Wellbeing Practitioners (PWPs) who are trained in delivering Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT). This approach helps you understand how your thoughts, behaviors and feelings link together and how they can sometimes maintain problems we are having.


This usually involves 5 sessions with a PWP, usually lasting around 30 minutes per session. Sessions tend to take place weekly or fortnightly and can be delivered face to face or on the telephone.

The sessions will involve identifying goals, understanding your difficulties, agreeing treatment plans and monitoring your progress. The focus will be on guiding you through the self-help materials and helping you to develop strategies to become the best manager of your mental health.

Each session you and your practitioner will agree some tasks to complete in your own time at home. These tasks will be aimed at helping you reach your treatment goals. The more time you spend on these between session tasks, the more likely you are to benefit from treatment.

Support Classes and Workshops

We offer the following classes and workshops:

  • Improving Wellbeing Class
  • Low Self-Esteem Class
  • Long Term Health Conditions Workshop
  • Behavioural Activation Course
  • Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) Class

The classes and groups can run between four to 10 weeks. These classes can for be 1 hour, 90 minutes or two hours long, depending on the class.

Our classes are run on a rolling programme. They provide participants with an in-depth understanding of their symptoms and methods to combat them.


Computerised CBT

This is an online programme called SilverCloud that you can access as often as you like, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The programme is interactive and informative and will provide you with a space to reflect and learn techniques that can help to improve the way you are feeling. It is helpful for stress, depression and anxiety.

The content is of Computerised CBT is identical to what a therapist would work through with you.  You are supported online by a therapist who will monitor your progress and help you through the modules.

Step Three Counselling

Step Three Counselling is a high intensity intervention offered between 6 to 8 sessions. Counsellors will build a supportive, non-judgmental and in-depth relationship with you based on empathy and honesty.

Together with your counsellor, you will establish and work towards a therapeutic aim. Through exploration of your experiences and emotions, your counsellor will support you to:

  • Access and express underlying feelings and make sense of them
  • Find new meanings to make positive changes in your life.
  • Reduce your negative thoughts and feelings
  • Feel better about yourself and your life
  • Find ways to achieve a greater degree of choice and purpose in the world
  • Develop emotional awareness
  • Gain greater understanding of yourself, your relationships, and your responses to others
  • Find different ways to manage your feelings
  • Explore childhood experiences and feelings and how they related to present day situations


Counselling at step three is suitable for:

  • People who can explain what is bothering them
  • People who may have tried other support first
  • People whose problems have continued for a longer time
  • People who can be reflective between counselling sessions
  • People who want to explore feelings and emotions

Step three counselling can be helpful for individuals experiencing mild and moderate feelings of:

  • Depression or low mood
  • Relationship issues
  • Bereavement, Grief and Loss
  • Complicated or long-lasting feelings of grief
  • Work problems
  • Adjusting to significant Life events and Changes
  • Self-esteem issues
  • Loss of confidence
  • Anger
  • Issues around maintaining attachments and relationships

Who is this service for?

This service is available to anyone aged 16 or over that has a common mental health problem and is living in Northumberland.

How do I refer?

Online: You can contact Talking Matters Northumberland by going to their website and completing their self-referral form. http://www.tmnorthumberland.org.uk/

Talking Matters

GP Referral: You may wish to speak to your GP or a health professional for some more information. Following your discussion, they may refer you to Talking Matters Northumberland.

Telephone: You can also contact NHS Northumberland Talking Matters directly by telephone – 0300 3030 700

Where is the service located?

NHS Northumberland Talking Matters has locations across the whole of Northumberland. We work from GP surgeries, specialist hospitals and community settings.

What other support is available?

There are many other talking therapies available at NHS Northumberland Talking Therapies. These include:

  • Counselling
  • Couples Therapy for Depression
  • Dynamic Interpersonal Therapy
  • EMDR
  • High Intensity CBT
  • IPT
  • Helpline

Please see our FAQ page for more information on these therapies.

"We promote and improve mental health and emotional wellbeing for adults"