National Personality Disorder
Development Programme


Training Menu 

In line with the capabilities framework, we organise training for staff at all levels of experience, from all relevant professional or non-professional backgrounds, and from all agencies and sectors. We are particularly keen to help voluntary sector agencies, where most of the people diagnosable with personality disorder seek help.

On this page, descriptions of the training we organise is arranged in the following categories (click on them to be taken to relevant section):



One-off learning events

One day or half day events are frequently organised. These are generally tailored to particular requirements, and led by our team of experts by experience. These are ex-service users themselves who are part of, or work with support and training from, the Thames Valley Initiative “Training, Research and Recovery Team”. These single events are often held in partnership with other agencies. We need to charge to cover costs for events within the Thames Valley, and to make a slight surplus for ones further afield. Enquiries to Sue Robinson, project administrator,, or our experts by experience, Sheena Money  and Yolande Hadden


Short courses

A short course, of three days or six half days, is planned. It will be possible to mount this in different locations, in line with demand. The content will be modified for the target audience, if this is discussed well in advance. Fees will be to cover costs, and it will only be available in the Thames Valley area. Enquiries to, or


Contribution to unidisciplinary trainings

We are keen to design sessions or modules within established trainings and continuing professional development programmes. For example, staff from Buckinghamshire, together with experts by experience, have established a small PD training module in Luton University’s basic nurse training degree; we would also be keen to plan sessions for GP postgraduate education and psychologists’ and psychiatrists’ CPD.

We will do this in full cooperation with course organisers, and welcome any enquiries, including those from outside the health service. Enquiries to Fiona Blyth, our locum training coordinator,




Personality: People and Pathology

This annual course, in Oxford, is NIMHE-sponsored and specifically in line with the “Capabilities Framework”. Three other such courses exist across the South East, based in Southampton, Brighton and Maidstone.

It comprises one afternoon each month, with lectures, work discussion groups and project seminars. There are also whole day events at the beginning and end of the course, and a two night residential experiential weekend in the middle.

Staff from any agency, who deal with people who could be diagnosed with “personality disorder”,  are welcome to apply. They will need support from their managers to take the necessary time off, and will be expected to become “PD agents” after they have finished the course. This involves planning various projects in close collaboration with ex-service users to raise awareness, undertake tier 1 & 4 clinical work, and lobby for better provision in PD. Three monthly seminars are held to support staff in this role.

 The course is fully supported by NIMHE in 2004-5, but will probably need to charge fees for 2005-6. The programme and application form will be available on this website by June 2005 for the September start. To discuss the course, contact our locum training administrator, Fiona Blyth If the number of applicants exceeds the 30 places available, choices will be made to ensure the widest possible spread of participants: across the three counties, and across the different agencies in which people work.


Reflective Practice Groups

Reflective practice groups, with “PD Agents” and experts by experience working together, can be arranged for any clinical teams across the three counties. The format is generally a regular hour and a half, each week or each month, with a team of up to 10. This can be either for a specific number of sessions, or as a continuing open-ended regular event. A charge to cover expenses will be made. Enquiries to


Living-learning experience

This is a three day & two night residential course held at Commonwork organic farm, near Sevenoaks, in Kent. It is an intensive groupwork training, and focuses on establishing therapeutic relationships and a therapeutic environment. It is run by ATC (the Association of Therapeutic Communities) on a weekend each May and midweek each November (contact to book places). Additional courses can be arranged with Thames Valley Initiative for specific groups of staff, on request. There is also an option to hold them on a mental health training boat in Sicily.

Depending on numbers and specific requirements, the cost is about £300-400 per person.  Enquiries to




There are none currently available in the Thames Valley of longer duration than one year, or that offer formal academic credits. However, we have contacts in other regions, including London, and are willing to discuss training pathways with any interested staff - from any sector or agency, who work in Berkshire, Buckinghamshire or Oxfordshire. Enquiries to


In the long term, when the range and content of our menu is stable, we intend to apply for university accreditation of various PD-relevant modules. It is anticipated that these will contribute to qualifications such as PG Certificate, PG Diploma and a Masters level degree. This will include research, for which opportunities are already available: contact



The training, research and recovery team (“TRRT”) also runs the weekly training programme for the Oxfordshire Therapeutic Community Service (the Wednesday Afternoon Community, “WAC”), the monthly support and training programme for the group of experts by experience and ex-service users (the Support, Training and Recovery System, “STARS”), and the quarterly support and planning group for those who have completed the Personality People and Pathology course (the “PD Agents”).

The training, research and recovery team also held the Thames Valley Initiative's "Annual Development Conference" on Wednesday 6 July 2005.


 Please note this is an evolving process, and if what you want is not here, please email our administrator, Sue Robinson at, or our locum training coordinator, Fiona Blyth at, and we will discuss how best we can meet your needs


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