New Wellness Centre in Harrogate

A brand new Wellness Centre at Harrogate Ladies’ College opened in September 2018.

The Wellness Centre will be the hub for a wide range of activities designed to support and encourage all round mental wellbeing.

As well as a fully-staffed Medical Centre the new facility will also offer activities such as mindfulness training meditation and yoga, massage and reflexology, stress prevention and management, and nutritional advice.

The Wellness Centre will be a place for all pupils, staff and parents to go to develop their wellbeing. Parent and baby activities including baby yoga will also be available for members of the local community. A wellness programme will be led by the Director of Wellness, Mr Richard Farnan.

Wellness Centre Harrogate
Harrogate Ladies’ College

Sylvia Brett, Principal of Harrogate Ladies’ College said,

“There are lots of reports in the media about wellness issues in young people and the ‘Heads Together’ campaign launched by Prince Harry and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge aims to dispel the stigma around mental health. Schools must also be pro-active in this area which is why Harrogate Ladies’ College’s major initiative in the coming year is a Wellness Strategy and Wellness Centre.

“Our commitment to wellness and our investment in a new centre reflects our aim to provide opportunities for our whole school community to develop physical, mental and social wellbeing. We are developing our Wellness Strategy in consultation with parents, staff and pupils and this will develop as the centre evolves and the demands of the world change.

“I strongly believe that if pupils have an inner core of wellness they will have strategies for developing their emotional maturity, understand their spiritual place in the universe and have respect for the environment. They will challenge their brains intellectually and be committed to physical health as well as mental wellbeing.

“This is what we want for this, and future generations of pupils at Harrogate Ladies’ College.”

A man amongst the women

I am terribly proud to have met with this young man: Matt Symonds.

He has set up a wonderful therapy clinic in Harrogate where he offers the soothing benefits of acupuncture alongside the exotic treatments of Tui Na massage and cupping.

Harrogate Acupuncture
Matt Symonds – Acupuncture Harrogate

His affable and amiable nature will win you over and set you at ease in an instant. Despite his imposing height, he is a gentle giant ready and eager to help those in need.

His enthusiasm and passion for acupuncture and holistic therapy emanates through the bright sparkle in his eye as whenever he broaches the subject of healing. Matt graduated from the Northern College of Acupuncture in York with a Bsc Acu (Hons) and is a fully accredited member of the British acupuncture council (BAcC).

harrogate acupuncture
Matt’s inviting clinic on Ripon Road


So watch out all you lady therapists in Harrogate, there is a man in your midst now and I have a feeling he will go from strength to strength.

Magic Massages at Vanity Health and Beauty Clinic

How many massage parlors does a town need!!

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

Repetitive strain injury giving you neck ache?

Being in the same position at a desk day in and day out can put a lot of strain on our posture.

Now those good girls and boys out there who are following their Yogitivity routine or standing up, walking around and stretching regularly can read this with a smug smile and no pain!

But for us mere mortals who slave away at a computer and can’t quite seem to tear ourselves away, it is very easy to fall prey to the excruciating burning and jabbing pain that grows in our neck and shoulders and even in our lower back.


Aromatherapy massages Harrogate
Aromatherapy massages at “Vanity Health and Beauty”, in Harrogate

But don’t fear help is at hand.

In the form of Alice’s magic hands! Here in Harrogate Alice Danker from Vanity Health has been my saviour for many years. I initially went to her with a lot of stress knotted between my shoulders and a veritable “lump” of tension on my neck.


Hot stone therapy Harrogate
Hot stone therapy at “Vanity Health and Beauty” in Harrogate

Alice set about working her magic weaving and intertwining the beauty of several different massage and aromatherapy together in order to come up with her magic potion. Now I cannot reveal her trade secrets, you’ll have to visit her yourself for that!, but what I will say is that she took the best from all the worlds of complementary therapy and poured them into my aching shoulders. She kneaded my twisted nest of pain and stress with her hot stones and warming oils, she soothed away my worries with her uplifting blend of essential oils and then she deftly worked away the pain in and around my shoulders and back to leave me feeling like a new woman.

The only nagging pain was that there was something missing: it was the sensation of the missing ache that I had been carrying around and was used to feeling for so many years. It was gone and I was missing it like I would miss a hot water bottle in the Sahara!

Other therapists would do well at times to take a leaf from Alice’s book. Sometimes we do not need to rigidly stick to one routine, one therapy, one massage technique, sometimes what is needed is a blend of many to come up with just the right solution.

If you’re busy working at a screen or hunched over a desk and not keeping up the yoga or holding all of your stress and tension in your neck as we sometimes do!) you may well be feeling the strain, but remember, for around £40 all that pain can go away. What a small price to pay – don’t delay treat yourself to some Alice Magic from all the wonders of the world of wellness.