A listening ear for anyone worried about facing up to Christmas

Christmas time is usually a period full of emotion and sometimes that emotion is one of sadness and depression especially for people isolated on their own.

And this year that may be of extra concern by the continued effect of Covid-19 with all of its lockdowns and restrictions.

With this in mind Pendleside Hospice is offering a special counselling service on the build-up to Christmas Day.

Simon Frauts, the family support team leader at Pendleside, said: “Christmas time can be a very stressful period during the best of times but this year it is particularly fraught with extra pressures because of the consequences of coronavirus.

“Apart from some suffering bereavement it can also be brought on by families and friends having been unable to socialise in the weeks building up to the festive period, colleagues not being able to share the usual fun of Christmas because they are working from home, others not being able to enjoy the build-up because pubs and restaurants have been closed and, of course, the effect of some people losing their jobs.

“Any one of these can have a damaging effect on people’s mental strength and if you are living on your own without any one to share your anxieties then it can become a very alarming time.

“The sessions are designed to provide one to one therapeutic support for anyone who may be worried about how they or their family may cope with Christmas or would like someone to talk to help them handle the Christmas period.


“This support would be difficult to find anywhere else before Christmas. Our counsellors are trained and experienced in providing an ear to listen to people’s worries and offer them a voice of compassion and offers of calming advice.”

The Christmas support sessions will run on Wednesday and Thursday, December 23 and 24, from 9am-5pm. Due to Covid-19, they will be offered via telephone or through online video.



Simon added: “Anyone is welcome, you don’t need to have used the hospice’s services before or have any diagnosed illness. It may be especially helpful for those who do not necessarily want counselling but would just like someone to talk to.”


Appointments can be made directly by contacting Family Support on 01282 440102 or by emailing the family support team leader, Simon Frauts, at [email protected]