Part of a 500 acre working farm, Archangel welcomes you to their home from home embedded in the beautiful countryside of Hertfordshire.
Clinical Director & Co-Founder
After crippling my business and suffering health consequences, I got into recovery from drug addiction through the 12 step programme.
However, I still struggled with feeling’s, honesty and perfectionism. But how did I become the person I am.
I began to explore all my behaviours, completing a diploma in care & counselling then a BSc honours degree in addiction counselling through Bath University; not to become a therapist, but to learn how my behaviour could be treated.
During this journey of self-exploration, I worked at Broadway Lodge. I then stumbled across Hilary Thompson Betts. She was previously of The Priory (North London) and then clinical director of Sanctuary Lodge, Essex, where I later became the lead therapist, coordinating the treatment program and applying my learning of self to help others.
Following Hilary’s work in Pia Mellody’s “Developmental Immaturity Model” I explored my trauma in childhood and how this set me up for the relationship I have with myself and others in my adult life; I visited Arizona, with the help of Pia Mellody and ‘The Meadows‘, I gained some love and compassion for myself and worked with my trauma’s, completed training and became certified in Post Induction Therapy (PIT).
As a partner, step-mother to a struggling teen and mother to a toddler, I spent years managing the environment around me rather than my own mental well being. Not knowing how to help myself, I resorted to trying to control the situation but ended up making it worse.
There seemed no support system or solution that understood the actual problem but rather tried to treat the symptoms without success, leaving me with a feeling of hopelessness.
When I met Ben, his approach was unique and he immediately understood the family dynamics. I felt my problems were 'seen' for the first time. He has taught me to care for myself which was a revelation on many levels, opening the doors to a healthy and connected life.
I felt that there needed to be better solutions than are currently offered to families and so we created Archangel to offer families the place we were looking for for all those years.
I spent many years in the corporate world, managing international travel and high-pressure jobs, whilst trying to be there for my children.
After separating with their Mum, like many Dads, I tried to be a Super Dad during the time I had with the children and providing for two homes. It never felt what I did was good enough and when my eldest son started showing disruptive behaviour, I felt responsible for what he was doing and the impact it had on the wider family.
I sought help in many ways including traditional therapists, social services and other private routes, all of which unfortunately didn’t seem to get to the crux of the problem.
We came across Ben (Archangel's Clinical Director) by chance, and he started to work with the family. He showed me how to better take care of myself and how to have healthy relationships with those around me.
I found the approach direct, proactive and refreshing. I could sense that it was all going to work out ok.
Ben's approach to treating mental health, is unique and largely unknown in the UK. He used to travel to see his clients in their home environment, offering the treatments they need rather than one hour slots in an anonymous office. One of his clients wrote.....
"In April 2018 our son revealed to us his almost daily use of Class A drugs over the previous 8-10 months. We had begun to suspect something was seriously wrong and that things were getting to a crisis point - schoolwork deteriorating, lack of energy, mood swings, erratic appetite, sleeping too much, sleeping too little. We contacted Ben to help us rescue our son. We hoped he might spend some time at a rehab clinic, where Ben was set up to help with the move. We wanted our son to step away from everything that was trapping him, all the temptations, all the pressures … He didn’t want to leave home though, so stayed and Ben came to us. This was the best thing that could possibly have happened.
It was a very difficult time. Fortunately, our youngster liked to talk and readily opened up to Ben and to us. We all took the journey together, examining our parenting, the family dynamics, what had gone wrong and how we could move forward. Ben held us safely in his support net whilst we went through this. We needed his strength to find our own.
We have so much to thank him for." - Patricia (Parent)
Ben believed a home like environment is best for effective therapy so he always imagined creating a place where clients would live with him so he could give them the best bespoke therapy and the best chance in life.
Damian and Julia met Ben a few years ago, where he helped them as individuals and as a family. Having experienced Ben's unique approach, together they formed the idea to create a home from home and provide the same opportunity, and therapy they had struggled to find. It was from this idea that Archangel was born and launched in the Summer of 2020.
Archangel offers effective treatment for young adults with participation from the broader family, in a safe place where they are comfortable enough to feel vulnerable and confident enough to accept treatment.