Intensive Psychological Therapies Service (IPTS)

The IPTS team provides specialist therapy for service users with complex trauma and long-standing interpersonal difficulties such as personality disorders and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

We aim to help service users develop openness and curiosity around their behaviours, manage and express their emotions effectively, and increase their connection with others through developing healthy relationships.

We are a dedicated multi-disciplinary team of therapists from a variety of core professional backgrounds including clinical psychology, nursing, social work and occupational therapy. All staff are professionally trained, post qualification, in a minimum of one therapy that is delivered at the IPTS. We have won national recognition as a model of good practice.

You will need a referral from a community mental health team to access the service. All therapy sessions, groups and classes are face-to-face at the IPTS.

We also offer online skills classes in DBT, RO-DBT and Resourcing for service users who are not able to access therapy but who are engaging with a CMHT or other Dorset HealthCare mental health service.

The IPTS runs peer support groups in collaboration with the Recovery Education Centre (REC). We also offer signposting to local and partner organisations, including Vocational Services.

“Self-harm became like a second nature to me. I was addicted and it would manifest itself in many forms including substance abuse, risky behaviour (promiscuity), cutting myself and starving myself.

"DBT has been the most life changing thing that I have ever been through, not to mention the most difficult thing I have ever been through. I am so proud of myself for completing things I never thought it would be possible and building myself a life worth living.”

Izzy, former dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) client.

Here is a video in which seven former clients share their therapy experiences at the service and what it helped them to learn.

Referral and Assessment

You will be invited to attend an assessment which is made up of several stages incorporating a clinical interview, completion of psychometric tests and discussions to help us understand your difficulties and what changes you would like to make. You will have the opportunity to ask any questions about therapy here. Your assessment will be discussed by the Clinical Decision Team to determine which therapy, if any, could be of benefit to you.

What is expected

Once you have agreed to attend the IPTS for therapy, it is important that you are committed to therapy. In order for you to benefit and for the IPTS to run effectively for others, the following will be expected of you:

• To take an active role in your therapy and take responsibility for the changes which you may make to your life as a result of therapy.

• Regular attendance at arranged groups and sessions with your therapist/s. If you cannot attend a session for some reason, please telephone to let us know. An answer phone will be on if no-one is available to take your call.

• To arrive for group and individual sessions on time. This helps minimise disruptions once the group has started.

• To read the “Psychometric Tests: Introduction” leaflet included in your assessment pack and complete the attached slip agreeing to complete the tests at the required stages.

Things to Remember


The IPTS is open from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm, Monday to Friday (except Bank Holidays).


Children are not permitted in the clinic. Unfortunately, there are no facilities for providing care for your children so you will need to make arrangements for them when you come to the IPTS for appointments or groups.


There is a no-smoking policy on this NHS site, including the use of any electronic smoking device. Your co-operation would be appreciated.


The NHS Zero Tolerance Zone is a nationwide campaign to stop violence against staff working in the NHS. ‘Violence’ means any incident where staff are abused, threatened or assaulted in circumstances related to their work, involving an explicit or implicit challenge to their safety, wellbeing or health. The definition is not subjective – it is what is meant by ‘zero tolerance’.


We recognise that you may feel anxious attending the clinic at times and wish to bring someone with you. Whilst we understand this will help you to attend your appointment, please be aware that this person will not be able to stay in the clinic unless this has been previously discussed and agreed.


The use of mobile phones is not permitted in the clinic. Your co-operation would be appreciated.

Location and contact details

01202 584120

Branksome Clinic,
51a Layton Road,
BH12 2BJ

At the corner of Sunny Hill Road

WiFi: No

Parking: Yes

Disabled Access: Yes

Opening times:
Monday to Friday from 09.00 to 17.00
Closed on Bank Holidays and weekends

By Rail Branksome Train Station is approximately 10 minutes away by taxi or a 20 minute walk.

By Bus Both Bournemouth and Poole are approximately 25 minutes away by bus on the numbers M1, M2, 1 and 3. Services run every 10 minutes during the day.

You may be eligible for reimbursement of travel costs subject to certain conditions. Please ask at Reception for details.

Mental Health and learning disabilities