Bereavement Support

Our Bereavement services support those whose loved ones have died under the care of Phyllis Tuckwell. We offer a range of sessions for individuals and groups to help you through this difficult time, which cover topics such as reacting to loss, facing grief and learning to cope.

Although everyone reacts to the death of a loved on in different ways, we have a leaflet on dealing with grief and a booklet on emotional support, which may be of help.

Bereavement Counselling

Grief is a difficult and painful experience, and it is not uncommon for the initial very raw and overwhelming emotions to last for three to six months. If they do not lessen after this time, or if indeed they worsen, then bereavement counselling may help.

We offer an initial set of six counselling sessions to the bereaved relatives of our patients, with a trained member of our team. These sessions offer a safe and confidential space, free from judgement and criticism, where individuals will be listened to and supported in a caring and empathetic environment.

View a video below of our bereavement and counselling services which shares the experience from some local families:

First Steps

Offered to those in the first stages of bereavement, this small group is organised and facilitated and supported by experienced counsellors. It helps individuals to understand the emotions that they may be experiencing following the death of a loved one, and identify what may help them. Six sessions are offered.

Second Steps

This group is aimed at those who are further along in their grief journey, as well as for those who have attended ‘First Steps’ but still feel that they need a little more help. It runs over four sessions.

Time to Remember

Six months after their loved one has died, bereaved relatives will be invited to join us virtually for this short service of remembrance. A Phyllis Tuckwell chaplain will read out the names of those who have died and individuals have an opportunity to light a candle in remembrance.

Time to Remember Service

Light Up A Life

Every year, just before Christmas, we hold our Light up a Life service, to remember those who have died and celebrate their lives. This poignant service takes place in the Guildford Cathedral grounds, where friends, relatives and staff congregate around a large Christmas tree, whose lights represent the lives of those who have died.

Remembrance Book

For some relatives it can be a comfort to have a connection with Phyllis Tuckwell as part of their grieving process. There is a Remembrance Book at Headway House in which relatives or friends can request the name of their loved one to be written, and they can make an appointment to view it.

Memory Tree

Our beautiful metal tree sculpture stands in a quiet area of our Beacon Centre gardens. Along its branches curl 300 thin hooks, from which delicate leaves can be hung, each dedicated by family or friends to the memory of a loved one. For a donation of £100 or more, families and friends can have a leaf engraved with the name of their loved one. The leaf will then be displayed on the Tree for twelve months, after which it will be placed in a presentation box and given to the person who bought it. Each month, a small ceremony will be held to place all newly-named leaves on the tree.

Keep memories alive with a leaf on our Memory Tree

Tribute Funds

Tribute Funds are a unique and positive way to remember a loved one. The Fund will carry their name and stand as a lasting memorial to their life, whilst the money in it will go towards helping us to support and care for more patients and families living with an advanced or terminal illness. The Tribute Fund can remain open for contributions for as long as the family wants.


Little Rays

Our Little Rays group is a 6-week after school group on a Tuesday. It is aimed at primary school aged children who have been affected by the death of a loved one. Run by a group of Counsellors and volunteers, all of whom have experience of working with children, the sessions provide a supportive environment for the children to explore their thoughts and feelings of loss through craft, play and storytelling. The children are taught a range of emotional skills or ‘tools’ to help them manage and cope with their loss, and once they have learnt these skills they can use them in daily life. Children are encouraged to attend as many sessions as they find beneficial.