New physical and mental wellbeing service for the Wharfe Valley


Wharfe Valley Pathways is open between 9:30 – 16.30 every Thursday at Christchurch

A new community-based service has been launched in Ilkley to help people access physical and mental wellbeing support, that also helps reduce some of the pressures being experienced by health and care services locally.


Every Thursday at Christchurch on The Grove in Ilkley, Wharfe Valley Pathways brings together local voluntary and community organisations Keighley Healthy Living, The Cellar Trust and Project 6 who are working closely with community health services including GP practices.


With well documented pressures being experienced by the NHS, including primary care services, this service will provide access to support where someone does not need medical treatment or advice. Each person accessing the service will receive information and support that helps them make healthier lifestyle choices, improving self-care or managing problems in their lives.


Wharfe Valleys Pathways is a service where people can meet to get support for all aspects of their life, including their physical, mental, and social health in a relaxed community-based setting with the option of one-to-one or group support.


Melanie Hey, Chief Executive for Keighley Healthy Living, said: “We are excited to be involved with this new service to support people with their health and wellbeing. We look forward to working in partnership providing a safe and welcoming space for people who would like to come along to join our activities and to find out about local information to support people to manage and improve their own health and wellbeing.”


A range of people will be on hand to help people including health coaches, and mental health and drug and alcohol specialists to give one to one support. They will be able to advise on issues ranging from how to get the motivation to exercise through to tackling loneliness and more complex issues such as helping people who are concerned about their drinking or drug taking.


Vicki Beere, Chief Executive for Project 6, commented: “We want to create an accessible and tailored service that offers non-judgmental support in a safe space that people can access either through a referral from health services or by self-referring. Furthermore we offer a drop-in service so that we can be as flexible as possible. The Wharfedale Pathways demonstrates how voluntary and community organisations can play a critical role in helping our communities while also taking pressure off our health and care services.”


Kim Shutler, Chief Executive for The Cellar Trust, added: “Our approach is to offer a warm and welcoming environment because we know it might be daunting for some people to walk in. A member of the team will sit down with them with a cup of tea and listen. This is just the start of our service and we want to make it right for local people. To do this we will be talking to and involving local people and those that use or refer to Wharfe Valley Pathways to ensure we are delivering what the people of Wharfedale want and which meets their needs.”


Helen Hirst, Chief Officer for NHS Bradford District and Craven Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “We have a health and care partnership that covers Bradford District and Craven that we commonly refer to as Act as One. This project shows how we can act as one to understand what our communities need, what our health data tells us and tailor a service that is uniquely placed to address inequalities at a neighbourhood level.”


The initiative is a partnership between Project 6, The Cellar Trust and Keighley Healthy Living, and is funded by NHS Bradford District and Craven Clinical Commissioning Group.


Wharfe Valley Pathways is open between 9:30 – 16.30 every Thursday at Christchurch, The Grove, Ilkley

Pathways is available free of charge for anyone over the age of 18.