Continuing Professional Development

We provide a variety of professional development opportunities. Some of these are available only to our members whilst others are available to other qualified psychotherapists and counsellors and we are committed to developing training provision aimed at giving an attachment orientation to other professionals.

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Open Days

Psychotherapy Training Open Days

The Open Day provides an opportunity to visit our centre and meet staff from the Bowlby Centre to find out more about our approach and the details of our training programme. The event is a facilitated workshop, with an overview of the curriculum, a clinical vignette and a discussion about our approach and the theoretical influences that have informed our work. It is also an opportunity to meet some of those who may be training alongside you, should you decide to join us.

There is a charge of £50 for attendance.

The Bowlby Centre
1 Highbury Crescent
London N5 1RN

Further Open Day Information

Clinical Forums

Clinical Forum – Speaker: Ruthie Smith

Synopsis: Attachment trauma has major implications for people’s capacity for individuation often resulting in co-dependent relationships, fear of intimacy or separation, living in chronic states of anxiety or disconnection. Trauma is held as stress in the body and scientific research has now proven that traumatic patterns go deep into our cellular memory and DNA. Many people with trauma at conception and in utero, suffer from chronic and undiagnosed PTSD. Energy psychology methods enable us to identify and treat traumatic patterns which are outside conscious awareness, so these methods are particularly useful in working with developmental, abandonment and attachment trauma.

Ruthie Smith will describe how using simple Energy Therapy methods, which clients apply to themselves within relational psychotherapy, makes it possible to treat attachment trauma relatively easily, including pre-verbal trauma such as in utero, pre-birth, birth and early life trauma and the fundamental lack of safety which such trauma engenders. In the process, the client forms a healthy attachment with the therapist, facilitating the experience of the ‘secure base’. The use of energy psychotherapy also provides empowering self-help tools for clients, enabling them to self-regulate their emotions and triggers, bringing them to a state of balance

About the speaker, Ruthie Smith

Ruthie Smith is an Attachment Based Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist with over 30 years experience. She was a therapist and supervisor at the Women’s Therapy Centre founded by Susie Orbach and worked as a Principal Individual Psychotherapist and Supervisor in the NHS.

Ruthie has taught on many psychotherapy training programmes, including at the Bowlby Centre, where she is currently a training supervisor. She has been teaching energy psychotherapy for the past ten years and founded the Flame Centre in central London in 2010 which specialises in treating trauma using energy methods.

Ruthie is senior course director on the new Confer, Practising Energy Psychotherapy Diploma which starts in January 2020 ( ). She has been a speaker on the Confer CPD programmes on a variety of subjects.
Her other interests include spirituality, running mindfulness and theme centred retreats at her Octagon Centre, and music – singing with chamber choir, playing saxophone in various groups.

Saturday, 11 January 2020

Time:11.00am – 1.00pm (Registration 10.45)

Cost: £30 (Bowlby Centre members and students – free)

Venue: The Bowlby Centre 1 Highbury Crescent, London N5 1RN

Chair of Clinical Forum: Helene Everitt, member of the Bowlby Centre

CPD:2 hours – (CPD certificate provided)

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11th January 2020


Becoming Secure: What Are The Ingredients of a Successful Psychotherapy?

Date: Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th January 2020
Time: 10 am to 4pm Saturday, 10 am to 3pm Sunday
Cost: £200, £175 Bowlby Centre members, £150 Bowlby Centre students
Venue: Resource for London, 356 Holloway Rd, London, N7 6PA


Attachment Theory has always integrated findings from related disciplines. Bowlby’s thinking was influenced by concepts from ethology, animal research and information processing. More recently, it has benefitted from research into linguistics, the effects of trauma, neuroscience, and contemporary developmental theories. But what does this mean for the practice of attachment-informed psychotherapy? If the overall aim is secure attachment, what needs to happen in an effective therapy to bring that about?

This two-day seminar will propose key ingredients, areas of focus in clinical work that facilitate ‘earned security.’ While each individual client is unique, and the balance of ingredients will also vary according to core attachment style, anxieties and defences, these areas of focus can be helpful throughout the lifetime of each therapy; as part of the assessment process, as a framework to review the work, and as part of ending. It also provides a guide when
therapies get stuck, as part of supervision, and for self-supervision There will be ample opportunities throughout these two days to reflect on clinical material in the light of these ‘key ingredients.’

Linda Cundy is an attachment-based psychoanalytic psychotherapist and supervisor in private practice in north London. As an independent trainer she has twenty-five years’ experience of teaching, including setting up a
postgraduate diploma in attachment-based therapy. She has contributed to and edited three books to date; “Love in the Age of the Internet: Attachment in the Digital Era” (2015, Karnac), “Anxiously Attached: Understanding and Working with Preoccupied Attachment” (2017, Karnac) and “Attachment and the Defence Against Intimacy: Understanding and Working With Avoidant Attachment, Self-Hatred, and Shame” (2018, Routledge).

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14th/15thFebruary and 27th/28thMarch 2020

2pm -8.30pm on Friday, and 10am -2.30pm on the Saturday

Cost: £350

Attachment Narrative Therapy: Working Systemically with Attachment Narratives

This four day course will introduce an integrative approach to systemic practice: attachment narrative systemic therapy. The course combines attachment, trauma and narrative theories of development with systemic theory and practice to consider how systemic processes in families are fuelled by attachment dynamics. We shall explore how family members’ narratives –their explanations and understandings of their difficulties –are connected to, and in turn shape the attachment and systemic processes.

The course uses an adapted range of therapeutic interventions that can be employed in various therapeutic settings. The following main themes are covered: representational systems of attachment; intergenerational learning and care in families; trauma and the restriction of attempted solutions; recursive processes of intervention; the use of self in therapeutic work; developing and monitoring the secure base in therapy and for families; the use of action methods in therapy; and healing in relationships. The course uses a mix of adult learning methods including therapeutic examples, lectures, and experiential learning in small groups and group discussion.


The Course will cover the following main themes: representational systems of attachment; intergenerational learning and care in families; trauma and the restriction of attempted solutions; recursive processes of intervention -paying attention to pattern and process; the use of self in therapeutic work; developing and monitoring the secure base in therapy and in families; the use of action techniques in therapy; and healing in relationships.

Block 1 – 14-15 February 2020 Introduction and Implications of Attachment Theory Exploration and Understanding of Attachment Narratives: the role of loss and trauma Formats for Exploration
Block 2 – 27-28 March 2020 Attachment Narratives: Intervention and the Possibility of Change Maintaining the Secure Base into the Future Formats for Exploration

Rudi Dallos is Professor and Research Director on the Clinical Psychology Training Programme at the University of Plymouth. He currently works as a family therapist in two family therapy clinics in the Southwest utilising the Attachment Narrative Therapy approach. He has conducted research into family dynamics and attachment patterns and has written several books including: Attachment Narrative Therapy, Systemic Therapy and Attachment Narratives (with Arlene Vetere), Attachment and Family Therapy and an Introduction to Family Therapy.

Arlene Vetere, FBPsS, FAcSS, is Professor of Family Therapy and Systemic Practice at VID Specialized University, Oslo, Norway. I am a clinical psychologist and systemic psychotherapist specialising in working with couples and families, and with violence and substance use in families. In the past I have worked in clinical settings designated for older people and their families, with child and adolescent problems, with the child protection system and family courts, with acute psychiatric and rehabilitation settings, with intellectual and physical disability, and with community, in-patient and out-patient settings. The course draws on our recent book: Dallos R and Vetere A (2009) Systemic Therapy and Attachment Narratives: Applications in a range of clinical settings. London: Routledge. Rudi Dallos and I are currently working on the second edition of this book.

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Attachment Theory in Clinical Practice – June 2020

6th and 7th June and 20th and 21st June 2020.

Cost: £580 Organisations, £540 Individuals

Seminars will include the following themes

• Introductions – our relationship to attachment theory.
• Attachment theory in context
• Separation, loss and mourning
• Patterns of attachment and their internal representation
• Secure • Dismissing • Preoccupied • Unresolved/disorganised • Not classifiable
• Evaluating adult attachment states of mind
• Internal working models
• Reflective functioning
• Intersubjectivity

Clinical work will consider the role of mourning, narrative, mutuality and recognition, affective attunement and cycles of rupture and repair in the therapeutic process.

The objectives of this course is to introduce Attachment theory and deepen your understanding of it. It’s designed to be of practical value with implications for therapy and human relatedness.

The course is aimed for Counsellors, Psychotherapists, Psychologists, Psychiatrists and Social Workers.

“I was surprised how this course touched on all areas of my life… for me it has been the missing piece of the jigsaw I have been looking for and brings together many things…”

Orit Badouk Epstein is a UKCP registered attachment based Psychoanalytic psychotherapist, a training supervisor and a training therapist. She trained at the Bowlby Centre, London where she is the Editor of the journal Attachment-New Directions in Psychotherapy and Relational Psychoanalysis (published by Karnac books). She teaches Attachment theory and is the head of the planning group of the International Bowlby Memorial conference. She specialises in attachment theory and trauma and regularly writes and present papers on these topics. She runs a private practice and works relationally with individuals, couples and parents. Orit has a particular interest in working with individuals who have experienced extreme abuse and trauma and have displayed symptoms of dissociation. She is the co-author of the book “Ritual Abuse and Mind Control: The Manipulation of Attachment Needs” (Karnac Books), co-editor of the book “Terror within & without”, and is the co-editor of the ESTD (European Society for Trauma and Dissociation) newsletter where she regularly writes articles and film reviews.

Attachment Theory in Clinical Practice

6th and 7th June and 20th and 21st June 2020.

Cost: £580 Organisations, £540 Individuals

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