First FPN meeting in Newcastle November 7th

First FPN meeting in Newcastle November 7th, Brunswick Methodist Church.


10 attended including: G.Crowley, Andy Metcalf, Chip Ponsford, Bruce Scott,

J.Hardy, M.Holdon ,B.Smith, N.Judson, C.Knowles, and N. Luxton.

Apologies and requests for minutes received from :K.O’Grady,D.Millon, K.Ashworth.

  1. We went round the group introducing ourselves to each other
  1. Andy introduced FPN – talking about FPN  was a stand of solidarity with those marginalised and attacked by the government. Not an act of charity. It made sense to build a network, to support the work but also to show that there was a body of therapists standing in solidarity with those without disposable income.  FPN is in its first phase – which is to build a national network, establish local groups and so have some infrastructure when the network becomes more widely known. There are a number of First FPM meeting happening throughout UK this autumn. The website is a success and we want there to be more therapists from all over the UK listed on it.
  1. Much of the meeting was spent discussing the nature of FPN. How it was both the same and different to individual therapists who already have a practice of offering low fee work. Bruce talked about how the word free not only meant without monetary exchange but also meant free from the restricting/controlling constraints and rules that operate both in the NHS and also in organisations of therapists. Bruce’s point seemed to strike a chord.
  1. We discussed the need for free/low fee supervision to be offered to Fpn therapists, for their fpn work. Lists of FPN supervisors are being put together in various parts of the country. Both Nick and Barbara said they were interested in doing fpn supervision.
  1. There was information given about a new LGBT service that work is going to get started. Some discussion as to how that service might relate to FPN.
  1. There was discussion of how little space there was for therapists to meet, connect, link up in Newcastle, within the context of the Newcastle Association of Counselling ( apologies if I have misnamed it ) struggling to keep going. There was a sense , I think, that a Newcastle fpn group would have value, in part,  by providing that sense of connection/identity.
  1. The Group decided to meet again on January 16th at 1pm. Chip  capably chaired the meeting to its conclusion. Gina took away the contact details of all who attended.

Minutes by Andy Metcalf