Counselling Faculty

Certificate in Counselling Skills



Certificate in Humanistic Counselling Skills (Saturdays/weekends) tutor

Matt’s career as a therapist started in 1992, in the NHS in East London. Since then, he has been a therapist in a range of settings, mostly within the NHS, charities and in education.
He has been a member of faculty at the Gestalt Centre since 2008, teaching the Certificate in Humanistic Counselling Skills (weekend format) and on the Counselling Diploma.
His training has been in psychodynamic, Jungian and Gestalt approaches and he holds qualifications in counselling, psychotherapy and supervision.
In his private practice, Matt works with individuals, couples and groups, as well as providing clinical supervision to counsellors and psychotherapists. As a qualified Art Psychotherapist, he is registered with the Health and Care Professions Council

Julie Andrews MA, MBACP (Accred)

Certificate in Humanistic Counselling Skills (Friday mornings) tutor

Julie trained at the Gestalt Centre (Post-Graduate Certificate Gestalt Psychotherapy Theory) and went on to gain a Masters in Counselling at Goldsmiths University and a Certificate in Clinical Supervision at Regent’s University London. Alongside running this course, she provides individual & group supervision plus freelance training at City Lit including an ‘Introduction to Gestalt Counselling’.



Robert French MA, UKCP, MBACP

Certificate in Humanistic Counselling Skills (Thursday evenings & Sundays) tutor

Robert qualified as a Group and Individual Gestalt Psychotherapist via the Gestalt Centre in 2011. He runs a private practice in Old Street, London.

Richard Lewis, MA UKCP

Certificate in Humanistic Counselling Skills (Wednesday evenings) tutor

Richard is a Gestalt psychotherapist and group facilitator based in Oxford. He trained at IATE, and the Gestalt Centre. He was a course director at the Skyros Holistic Centre in Greece teaching music and creativity. He studied jazz and educational psychology in California at the Musicians Institute of Technology. He is fascinated by the creative process and worked for many years as a composer and film maker, and creative director in the media. His interests include Taoism, the environment, current affairs, and Arsenal football club.

Diploma in Counselling

Jo Small MBACP (Accred)

Diploma in Counselling tutor, Year 1 (Mondays)

Jo is a Gestalt Psychotherapist (MBACP accred) with over 10 years’ experience working with children, adolescents and adults, both in private practice and educational settings. She is also a level 6/7 trained Clinical Supervisor. Jo has been managing a counselling project within a challenging inner city secondary school for several years, training and supervising trainee placement counsellors.  Jo trained at The Gestalt Centre and has been teaching Gestalt theory and counselling skills on a Diploma course, in a diverse SW London educational setting.

Umaa Thampu, MBACP (Accred)

Diploma in Counselling tutor, Year 1 (Thursdays) 

Umaa trained and graduated at the Gestalt Centre, bringing over 10 years’ experience working in a diverse mix of professional settings. Her background is in social services, youth charities and managing community-based counselling projects. Her interests are in cross cultural themes, shamanic, indigenous practices and working creatively to connect the body with nature and awareness.



Danny Boyle BA (Hons), UKCP

Diploma in Counselling tutor, Year 2 (Mondays)

Danny trained with the Gestalt Centre and is an experienced UKCP registered psychotherapist and supervisor.  He has a private practice in Hertfordshire. Danny has a BA Hons in Education and Experiential learning and a background in NHS CAMHs (tier 4) services in therapeutic community and mental health projects and psychodrama groups. He is head of counselling and core tutor at the Gestalt Centre.  Danny is the therapy scheme and placement coordinator for the Gestalt Centre liaising with existing and potential placement organisations and sending regular bulletins to our students.



Peter Teigen BSc (Hons) Psychology, MA Gestalt Psychotherapy, UKCP

Diploma in Counselling tutor, Year 2 (Thursdays)

Peter has a background in the creative arts. After gaining his degree in psychology, he qualified as a group and individual psychotherapist at the Gestalt Centre.
He has many years’ experience in private practice and is also a member of the British Psychological Society.



Psychotherapy Faculty

Diploma in Professional Development

Hannah Rees MSc, UKCP

Hannah is a UKCP Registered Gestalt Psychotherapist, EMDR Practitioner and clinical supervisor in private practice. Originally trained at the Metanoia Institute, she has also been an Assistant Tutor on their Gestalt MSc programme, as well as being a visiting tutor at The Institute of Arts and Therapy in Education (IATE).  Hannah has a particular expertise in trauma, cultural relocation as well as working therapeutically with the voice. She has a background in classical singing.

Post Graduate Certificate year of training

Urtzi Cristobal BSc Psychology, MA, UKCP, MBACP (Accred)

Urtzi is a psychotherapist and supervisor as well as our Post Graduate Certificate tutor. He worked for 11 years at a hospice where he trained and managed the staff as well as

offering individual and group therapy for the terminally ill, their families and bereaved relatives.

Postgraduate Diploma year of training

Natsu Hattori, DPhil (Oxon) MA UKCP

Natsu is a Gestalt psychotherapist working with individuals, couples and groups in private practice, a well as offering clinical supervision. In her academic background, she gained a DPhil from Oxford and was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Wellcome Institute. She has been a facilitator and co-facilitator of groups on race and inclusion. Natsu also works as a volunteer counsellor with NHS frontline staff.

MA & Psychotherapy Practitioner Programme

Adam Kincel PhD, MA, UKCP

Adam is a psychotherapist and supervisor with over 10 years’ experience. In addition to teaching at the Gestalt Centre, he also teaches internationally, particularly
in Eastern Europe and the USA. He is particularly interested in a relational approach and therapeutic work through the body. His doctoral research examined the
role of social and sexual identity in the therapeutic process.

Carmen Joanne Ablack MSc PGDip Psychotherapy MIHM(Sen) UKCP
Director of Psychotherapy

Carmen is an integrative body psychotherapist, supervisor and trainer working with individuals, groups, couples and organisations. She is a trained mediator and coach and is accredited as a Senior Manager by the Institute of Healthcare Management. Her theoretical, clinical, consultancy and teaching experience includes integrative and relational approaches; gestalt body psychotherapy; intercultural, sexual and diversity work; working with creativity and performance; somatic trauma therapy and transpersonal approaches in the psychological therapies. Carmen has been teaching psychotherapy, counselling and other psychological approaches to therapy since the 1980’s in the UK and abroad and is a regular keynote speaker. She has published a book chapter and various articles on psychotherapy theory, contemporary practice, regulation and governance. She is an Honorary Fellow of the UKCP, President of the EABP (European Association of Body Psychotherapists) and a member of UKAGP.


Emerita Advisor


Gaie Houston MA (Oxford) UKCP

Gaie Houston is Emerita Advisor to the Gestalt Centre London. She first trained in the US and has been teaching Gestalt and supervising since 1974. She has written a number of books on Gestalt, Brief work, Groups, Supervision and Integrative Therapy. She has written a number of plays, mostly for radio. She currently supervises senior trainees at the Gestalt Centre and works as a trainer in several countries outside the UK.

Visiting tutors in training qualifications and short courses leaders

Visiting leaders are regularly invited to work in all years of the training. This gives trainees a wide experience of the theoretical understanding and practice of Gestalt and related approaches.


Michael Ellis MA UKCP

Michael is a psychotherapist, trainer, supervisor and consultant with over thirty years of experience. He has a background in social work and youth work including therapeutic work with families and children. He also has extensive experience of training design and delivery, predominantly in the public and voluntary sector. His MA is in organisational consultancy from the Tavistock and he works with teams and organisations in the health service as well as the private sector and with voluntary agencies. He has been involved with the Gestalt Centre for over 30 years, as a faculty member and for 15 years as Managing Director. He is now a visiting tutor and runs the Groupwork programmes. Whilst continuing his psychotherapy, counselling and supervision practice he also provides training in groupwork for different agencies and facilitates groups for community leaders.


JP Photo final

Jane Puddy UKCP HCPC

Jane Puddy has a background in Drama Therapy, Family Therapy and Group Analysis. She works in a variety of social work, psychiatric and forensic settings, contributing to the development of Counselling and Psychotherapy courses internationally. She is also an Organisational Consultant.

Her relationship with the Gestalt Centre spans 33 years so far during which time she has been both a Director and Faculty member. She currently runs our Diploma in Supervision along with her good friend and colleague, Gaie Houston.

Jane also holds the title of Honorary Psychotherapist for the Centre for Psychotherapy and Human Rights.




Christina Schuierer

Christina Schuierer is an OD consultant and trainer with 20 years’ experience of working with public and private organisations worldwide. She has helped development organisations and teams to become more successful in designing and implementing projects on economic development, environmental protection and organisational sustainability and has worked in more than 50 countries in Europe, Africa and Asia.

She is managing a small consulting company based in Berlin, teaches on the faculty of international universities and institutes and is responsible for staff care at the German headquarters of Médecins Sans Frontières. Christina applies the Gestalt Approach to consulting, training, coaching and therapy.



Angelika Wienrich BA

Angelika Wienrich BA is a Gestalt based integrative Psychotherapist and supervisor with a background in research and Adult education. She has been teaching counselling and Gestalt since 1990 and is now a visiting tutor for the Gestalt Centre’s BACP accredited Diploma in Counselling, as well as at Affinity Psychotherapy Academy, teaching on a postgraduate Diploma in Neurosomatic Psychotherapy. She runs our Gestalt in Action and Free Fall – Creative Writing as Therapy weekends. She writes and was a founder member of Playback South for 20 years.
She was a staff counsellor at Hammersmith hospital for 3 years and has been working in private practice since 1988. As well working with individuals, couples and groups, recognising the need for support and community her work has evolved to include mentoring for a broad spectrum of practitioners in ongoing groups.

David Zigmond

David Zigmond trained initially in Medicine in the 1960s. From the 1970s he trained in both psychoanalytic and humanistic psychotherapies – he was among the first UK students of Gestalt and Transactional Analysis. For several decades he has worked as a frontline NHS Practitioner: as Psychotherapist, Psychiatrist and GP. His teaching has engaged a broad range of health professionals and psychotherapists. His wide-ranging publications explore neglected aspects of holistic psychological and social care. His practice, writing and teaching continue an imperfectable quest: how do we best combine art and science?



Piotr is a psychotherapist, supervisor and trainer with thirty years of clinical experience in the NHS, voluntary sector and private practice. His background is in psychology and neuroscience. He has considerable training in body therapy, couples therapy and many years’ experience of working with gender, sexuality and relationship diverse clients. Graduate of the Gestalt Centre London and its former board member, he is now a visiting tutor delivering amongst others the advanced clinical seminars for students of the Practitioner Programme. In addition to his private practice in London, he has been actively involved in the work of many different Gestalt organisations and training institutes in the UK and abroad. As a clinician working mostly in the second language, Piotr is interested in the reverberations of cultural and linguistic cross-cultural phenomena and how they impact the therapeutic process. He has translated the seminal text of Gestalt therapy into Polish.


Richard Spence MA (Oxon) MSC UKCP

Richard works globally as an Executive and Team Coach with organisations ranging from Engineering to Advertising and from corporate giants to fast-growing start-ups. He is a coaching supervisor for individuals and groups and teaches systemic Constellation work. Richard is also a Gestalt psychotherapist in private practice, working with people facing challenges including anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, addiction, bullying, bereavement, trauma and chronic suicidality. As a volunteer, Richard was the first Chair of Trustees for suicide charity ‘The Listening Place’ and is now on their clinical advisory panel. He is a trustee for ‘The Wren Project’, the only charity to provide psychological support to people across the full range of auto-immune diseases, was a Samaritan for fifteen years and a former co-director of Central London Samaritans. Previously, Richard had a long creative career as a BAFTA-winning film and television director in the UK and USA.




Elina Stamou MA, MSA

Gestalt Centre Chief Executive

Leading the organisational management and growth of the Gestalt Centre, Elina has over 25 years’ experience working with organisations in education and neurodiversity, emotional and psychological wellbeing and human rights. Elina’s experience is in the areas of strategic and operational leadership, organisational growth and change, business development and people-first cultures with growth mindset and agile systems. Elina’s practice is working in ways that bring together awareness, humanity, diversity and meaningful collaboration. Elina is also an Executive Coach, supporting executives and teams to lead fulfilling and thriving lives at work. Elina is a member of the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations and the Association for Coaching.




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