About me

I offer a wide range of treatments including Sports and Remedial Massage, Holistic Massage, and individual Pilates sessions to provide an individually tailored massage plan focused on addressing your personal circumstances.

During my years as a Sports Massage Therapist, Endurance Athlete, Pilates Instructor and working in some of the World’s leading investment houses, I have learnt many important lessons about how our physical/mental health and well-being is affected by a variety of factors. Even something as apparently straight forward as a training injury may have an underlying cause in other, more longstanding, issues such as poor posture, muscle imbalances or sub-optimum nutrition.

My focus is always therefore to work with you to not only treat your symptoms but also look into the reason's for the problem occurring.

Together we can Make a difference!

It is my experience that using this holistic approach and working with you to jointly assess the issue leads to more effective treatment, teaches self-sufficient management of longer-term conditions and reduces some recurring issues.

Aspire Massage Training Massage for Dementia

I also offer qualified, specialist treatment to people with dementia. Having experienced this 21st century disease personally with both my parents, and training others within a hospital setting I have seen first hand the relief and comfort massage can provide to dementia sufferers.

To book an appointment use the contact form, call me on 07966 054017 or email janetpitcher@btinternet.com. I’ll be happy to to answer any questions about my approach and how massage can help you.

Practice locations

My Dedicated Therapy Room
Stondon Massey, Brentwood,
CM15 0LD
The Cherry Tree Therapy Centre
2 Station Parade, Cherry Tree Rise, Buckhurst Hill, Essex, IG9 6EU

Lynsey Waterhouse

Janet Pitcher

  • London School of Sports Massage (LSSM Dip)
  • Diploma in Sports and Remedial Massage (BTEC/Edexcel Dip)
  • Anatomy and Physiology (ITEC Dip)
  • Swedish Massage/Pregnancy Massage (ITEC Dip)
  • Oncology Massage (NLSSM)
  • Postural Assessment (NLSSM)
  • Dry Needling (CORE Elements)
  • Ultrasound Therapy (Physique Mgmt)
  • Full member of the Sports Therapy Association (STA)
  • Member of the Complementary Therapists Association (CThA)
  • Fully insured with Balens
  • CThA First Aid in the Workplace Certificate

Sports Therapy Association

Janet’s knowledge and massage skills are excellent, without her I find it hard to believe I would have got through the London Marathon. Janet helped me through my whole training process, diet and reassuring me the whole time. Not only did she help me through any aches and pains she taught me the best strengthening exercises and stretching techniques helping me to become stronger and more flexible, she was my rock throughout. A huge thank you to Janet for going that extra mile in helping me. I would recommend her to anyone she is fantastic.
K Quelch

K Quelch

Runner, Loughton
I have been having regular massages for over 30 years. I have worked with dozens of masseurs and Janet Pitcher is without doubt the best. Each time I see Janet she varies what she does to meet my body's needs at that time - there is no set routine completed without much thought. She has 'listening hands'. She can tell quickly what is wrong and what your body needs. She has more anatomical and medical knowledge than any masseur I have ever met. She can also suggest stretches and exercises to alleviate complaints. I would recommend Janet without hesitation to anyone - whether they need to reduce the stress in their body, have a sports injury or wish to learn more about their own body.
J Stanford

J Stanford

Management Consultant
Janet has been providing me with massage treatments and exercise advice with good effect for some time. However, I have some persistently painful areas that have not always responded well and are possibly being exacerbated by my physical activities. Janet offered to include dry needling into my treatment and, although I was initially sceptical, I have become a convert. The fact that Janet was able to demonstrate the effectiveness of this treatment in three separate bi-lateral areas (neck, shoulders and hips) and achieve immediate muscle relaxation and pain relief is enough proof for me. I will be happy for Janet to incorporate this into my future appointments.
I Gray

I Gray

Cyclist, Wanstead

Massage Therapies

I offer a wide range of massage therapies, each has a different approach to target your needs:

Sports & Remedial

Holistic Massage

Specialist Massage

Sports & Remedial

Sports and Remedial Massage, often referred to as Deep Tissue Massage

This treatment is ideal for the Sports Athlete, and anyone participating in sport generally, as the name would suggest.  Working on those tight muscles, this massage will help prevent injuries by maintaining optimal condition by correcting imbalances in soft tissue. This is not specific however to people engaging in sport, and can be beneficial for anyone who is suffering from tight over used muscles, whether you are in a physical job or a keen gardener.


Sports Massage Pain Relief Work Related Injuries Posture

Holistic Massage

Holistic Massage, also referred to as Swedish Massage, is aimed at treating the whole body

With your emotional and spiritual well being in mind this is ideal if you are looking for that relaxing treatment where you can de-stress, unwind and feel physically and mentally balanced. Relaxing Aromatherapy oils will be used with this treatment.


Wellbeing Dry Needling Cupping Therapy

Specialist Massage

I am qualified and experienced to deliver the following areas of Specialist Massage

[introdution text to go here]


Pregnancy Oncology MLD Dementia

Sports Massage

Massage for sports and activity injuries

Sports massage is an effective and beneficial form of massage therapy. Muscular tension and soft tissue injuries cause pain and dysfunction. They can be treated safely and effectively with massage, preventing the build up of scar tissue and decreasing the likelihood of further injury.

Sports massage is not only for those who exercise regularly. Occupational and repetitive activities, including computer work and gardening often cause our muscles to tighten and shorten. This results in discomfort. Massage can be used to treat these problems.

How can massage help?

You will need to understand why you are using a sports massage practitioner. Is it part of ongoing regular training, part of recovering from an event or to help rehabilitate from an injury? Your sports massage practitioner will talk to you about this during your first initial consultation. They will devise a suitable program for your body, your sport and the problems you need to address.

Due to the nature of the manipulation of deep tissue, it can be uncomfortable at first, but your body will respond as muscle stiffness reduces and flexibility increases.

Other advanced bodywork techniques may be used including Soft Tissue Release (STR), Neuromuscular Technique (NMT), Connective Tissue Manipulation (CTM) and Muscle Energy Techniques (MET)

Regular sports massage can improve athletic performance, because the reduction in muscle soreness associated with training is reduced. Sports massage allows athletes to train longer and more effectively.

The psychological effects of a treatment include improving self-esteem and reduced anxiety. This can help prepare the athlete for their sporting event. This benefits athletes of all levels and abilities.

Benefits of sports massage

  • Mobilizes muscle fibres
  • Stretches soft tissue
  • Loosens adhesions
  • Improved movement of blood and lymph
  • Improves flexibility
  • Reduces swelling
  • Relieves muscle tensions
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SpineMan gardening

When sports massage can be effective:

Janet is a first rate sports injury masseuse. I have had treatment from her following a number of different sports injuries. She adapts her treatment to suit each particular problem. I can honestly say that there were vast improvements in my injury after each session. Excellent!

Keith Beck

Independend Sports Professional

Pain Relief

Massage can relieve the symptoms of:

  • Back pain
  • Joint pain
  • Sore muscles
  • Neck & shoulder pain
  • Carpel Tunnel syndrome
  • Headache & Migraine
  • Relieves muscle tensions
Book an appointment



Pain relief through massage

Have you ever thought of the benefits a massage could bring to your life?... Be kind to your muscles, you have over worked muscles!

When muscles are over worked lactic acid can be accumulated, this is a waste product within the muscle causing soreness, stiffness and in some cases muscle spasm.

Massage can help with this as it improves circulation, increasing blood flow, bringing fresh oxygen to the body’s tissues. This can help speed up healing after a sports injury and enhance recovery.

Following your Sports Massage Consultation and initial Treatment, a detailed plan will be specifically designed for you. Advice on your nutrition, exercise plan and general well being can be discussed.

  • Drug free

  • Available to all

  • Delivers results

Work Related Injuries

Back pain

The Health and Safety Executive in the UK reported 17.3 million people (over 3rd of the adult population) suffer from Back pain, the most common work-related illness where 1 million new cases are reported each year. Pain is often sudden and sharp but causes have often been building over some time.

Static sitting for long periods of time causes postural stress. We naturally fidget to reduce this but it is often not enough. When circulation is reduced the accumulation of metabolic waste causes muscular fatigue, this strain and fatigue increases with awkward postures, reaching and repetitive movement.

The correct seated posture recommendation is:

  • Supportive, adjustable chair set at correct height
    relative to desk height
  • Top of monitor screen set at eye level
  • Monitor stand used to correct height
  • Document holder positioned for minimal head movement
  • Monitor screen arms length from seated position


Correct posture

Computer related injuries

17.3 million people
(over 3rd of the adult population)
suffer from back pain.


Common Causes are:

  • Slouching or hunching when sitting
  • Standing with poor postural awareness
  • Awkward working postures
  • Incorrect desk set up
  • Lifting incorrectly
Book an appointment


Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI)

Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) is the generic term for pain felt around joints caused by repetitive movements. Aggravation, inflammation and damage caused over months or even years due to overuse often before pain occurs.


Common RSI complaints include:

  • Cramp of the hand - pins and needles sensation
  • Carpal/Cubital tunnel syndrome
  • Bursitis
  • Document holder positioned for minimal head movement
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Osteoarthritis
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Some studies report that cases of RSI are increasing at a rate of 15% per year.


Factors that may influence your posture:

  • Repetitive movements, sitting at a desk for long periods of time
  • Emotional issues, where stress can affect the way you hold yourself and affecting your posture
  • Hobby/sport related influences creating muscle imbalances
  • Injuries and illness, mental and physical
  • Muscle weakness are a major factor in our postural muscles, pulling ourselves out of alignment
  • Hereditary factors (if your mother for eg has a kyphotic spine)
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Many of the problems seen by professionals such as physiotherapists and massage therapists like myself, are related to poor posture

What do we mean by an ‘ideal posture’?

With ideal posture, the forces of gravity are evenly distributed through the body, so that all joints are in their neutral zone allowing the natural balance and correct length of the muscles, our movement patterns are normal and function better. Of course this is made easier without the absence of any wear and tear on the joints.

3 things you can do to improve your posture:

  • First

    Monitor a typical day, look for 'bad habits' .

  • Second

    Make a list and work on improving one area each week.

  • Third

    Use massage to correct any longer term problems that have been caused.

ergonomics diagram



Massage to restore balance in life

Massage can not only help our bodies deal with the physical stresses of activity, posture imbalance and trauma, it can help our wellbeing in times of mental stress too. My holistic approach treat the person as a whole, taking into consideration not just physical health, but also mental, and emotional and social factors.

Life events that can cause physical tension:

• Trauma
• Work stress
• Bereavement
• Divorce
• Moving house
• Redundancy
• Depression
Book an appointment

Benefits of holistic massage:

  • It soothes anxiety and depression
  • It improves sleep
  • It boosts immunity
  • It relieves headaches, muscular tension and stiffness
  • It boosts the immune system and encourages better circulation
  • It increases energy levels

Dry Needling

Dry Needling advantages:

  • Dry needling is used for the treatment of Sports injuries when the source of pain seems to be buried so deep as to be inaccessible to massage.
  • Widely used by Osteopaths, Chiropractors, Physios and Sports Massage Therapists.
Book an appointment


What is Dry Needling?

Dry needling is a treatment technique whereby a sterile, single-use, fine filament needle (acupuncture needle) is inserted into the muscle to assist with decreasing pain and improving function through the release of myofascial trigger points (knots in the muscle).

It releases muscle tension by causing tight muscles to twitch or cramp. Easing the trigger points can improve flexibility and increase range of movement.

Do the needles hurt when going in?

Generally, No! The acupuncture needles are extremely sharp and thin, so 99.9% of the time you actually barely feel the needles going in.
As the needle approaches a trigger point, you will experience a mild ache in the area whilst the needle does its job releasing muscle spasm. On occasions you will also get what’s known as a ‘twitch response’. This is completely involuntary and actually feels strange more than anything. 
The size of needle depends on the depth of the trigger point within the tissue, and the size of the muscle area being treated. A smaller area such as the neck will require a small needle, as opposed to the quads, hamstrings and glutes where a larger needle will be used. Relaxing trigger points can release long held pain.
It is not unusual to feel some soreness following your dry needling treatment, but this will subside within 24/48 hours.

Cupping Therapy

Cupping treatment benefits:

  • Cupping massage therapy works to loosen up scar tissues.
  • It works on up to four inches of tissues inside the body and stimulates the lymphatic system
  • It will clear arteries, veins, capillaries and blockages in the colon.
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Cupping Therapy

Cupping – Where did it originate from?

Cupping originated in China, where it is considered traditional medicine and is used to treat everything from muscle pain and coughs to shingles. Specialized glass cups are applied to specific areas on the body, and then either heat or a pump is used to create intense suction to the skin.

Is Cupping painful?

Cupping will tend to leave a circular bruise which should last about 3 to 7 days. Cupping is not painful. It feels like a really good deep tissue massage, unwinding deep knots in your musculature. Cupping can also be used to supplement any detoxification program.

What are the health benefits of cupping?

Most people find cupping to be a wonderfully relaxing, comfortable, and effective treatment. Like massage, cupping can also be used to relieve stress, tension, and lower blood pressure. The suction and negative pressure provided by cupping can loosen muscles, encourage blood flow, and sedate the nervous system (which makes it an excellent treatment for high blood pressure) Cupping is used to relieve back and neck pains, stiff muscles, anxiety, fatigue, migraines and rheumatism



Massage can relieve the symptoms of:

  • Hip pain
  • Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD)
  • Sciatica
  • Backache
  • Carpel Tunnel Syndrome
  • Leg cramps
  • Relieves muscle tensions
Book an appointment

Pregnancy Massage

It’s important to take some time out to pamper yourself while you’re pregnant, and having a massage is a great way to indulge while still taking care of your mind and body.

I recommend you wait until you are more than 12 weeks (1st trimester) to enjoy a massage and if you’ve had any complications, it’s best to make sure you ask your doctor before you book your massage.

Massage during pregnancy focuses on the special needs of the mum-to-be. It can really help your body to function at its optimum level and alleviate many associated discomforts.

The deep relaxation that massage creates decreases stress levels thus regulating the negative effects that stress hormones may have on you and your body. It gives you some well earned pampering and time to tune into your changing body. It helps you to be more aware of any tension you may have and is therefore a useful preparation for labour.

C-section scar therapy

More and more expectant mothers are discovering the benefits of pregnancy massage


Benefits include:

• Trauma
• Improving your mood
• Helps to ease backache, headaches and muscle aches and pains
• Decreases pain in the pelvic/hip area
• Improves circulation bringing more oxygen and nutrients to the cells of both you and your baby
• Improves elasticity which reduces stretch marks
• Helps reduce stress and anxiety, which will help stabilize hormone levels.
• Reduces fatigue and digestion
• Enhance the health and nourishment of your skin

I experienced general aches and pains along with a tense neck, shoulders and arms during my second trimester of pregnancy Visited Janet for my first pregnancy massage.
The attention to detail, care and confidence shown made me feel comfortable and relaxed. Janet really can read the body and focuses on the areas needed without having to direct her, her technique and attention to her work is exemplary.
Janet’s manner and calming presence along with amazing technique has made me feel so much lighter and calmer within myself – highly recommend her for pregnancy massages.

G Kalra

Oncology Massage

The benefits of oncology massage:

  • Valuable 'me time'
  • Reassurance
  • Relaxation
  • De-stressing
Book an appointment

Pain relief through massage

Oncology massage is an approach to massage therapy based in both compassion and specialized massage treatments to help people manage their experience with cancer.

The treatments are modified according to the full spectrum of cancer-related issues: the physical, psycho-social and emotional consequences of cancer. In addition, the person's individual goals are considered and aspects of the disease and cancer treatment side effects.

Personal goals for receiving oncology massage can include the desire for a respite, a relaxing pleasurable experience in the midst of everything that is going on. And, relieving nausea or other symptoms such as pain or peripheral neuropathy and helping them get though the remainder of their cancer treatments.

I was diagnosed with Bowel and Liver Cancer in September 2018.  My condition is treatable but not curable. Life can be very stressful with treatment (chemotherapy)etc but I do find that having a massage regularly does help my well being.  Although it can't cure my condition I find it deeply relaxing and gives me inner strength to carry on and face everyday life.  More importantly it gives "me time" which is very important. Janet came recommended to me, I have had massages before, but nothing like that Janet provides.  Her knowledge of dealing with Oncology Massage, her compassion and understanding, especially when I am at my lowest, is what makes her so passionate and good at her job.  I would highly recommend Janet.

B Commyns

Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD)

Lymphatic drainage can:

  • Reduce the chance of you suffering from minor colds and viruses; it helps your body fight off infection, and speeds up healing and recovery from illness
  • Help reduce water retention; for instance, because the lymph system has no pump, if you sit for a long time without moving, the lymph can't flow easily — this is why you may experience swollen feet or fingers
  • Boost weight loss, as improving the lymphatic system will improve your metabolic rate, which helps you burn calories more efficiently


Book an appointment



What is Lymphatic Massage (MLD)?

Lymphatic drainage is a therapeutic massage treatment. The massage uses very light pressure and long, gentle, rhythmic strokes to increase the flow of lymph and reduce toxins in your body.

The lymph system is part of your body's immune system and helps fight infection. Lymph itself is a clear, slightly yellow fluid. It transports nutrients and oxygen to cells, collecting toxins on the way and flushing them out through the lymph nodes. You have around twice as many lymph vessels as blood vessels in your body. However, unlike blood, which is pumped around by your heart, the lymph system has no pump. The pressure from your blood vessels and movement from your muscles push the lymphatic fluid around

What is lymphatic drainage massage good for?

Lymphatic drainage massage can have a beneficial effect on your general health. Because lymph is key to keeping your immune system working properly, improving the flow and drainage of lymph around the body is good for you in lots of ways.

Hot tip!

Lymphatic drainage is about flushing out your system; you can do this every day by drinking plenty of clear water.
One of the best things you can do for your lymphatic system is to be more active. Even the most gentle of activity will help encourage a healthy lymph flow, as movement of the muscles exerts pressure on the lymphatic vessels and keeps them moving.
It goes without saying that your diet plays a major role in your health and wellbeing, as does a good nights sleep.

Eat sensibly, Exercise regularly, Stress less, Sleep well

Dementia Massage Therapy

The benefits:

  • Increases body awareness and alertness
  • Reduces the feelings of confusion and anxiety
  • Eases the effects of isolation, loneliness and boredom
  • Encourages feelings of worthiness and well-being*

*Source: Click Here

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dignity and love

The power of touch

Touch builds up relationships. Touch signals safety and trust.

Touch is an incredible sense and is frequently ignored, particularly with our elders. We sometimes forget the power we have when we touch someone. We can tell instantly how someone is feeling by the way that they touch us, be it a grabbing of the arm or simply a hug or reassurance.

We are naturally drawn to comfort infants with touch, what about our elders living with severe dementia? Touch is one of our most basic human needs and remains constant throughout our lives, Elders with Dementia are often deprived of that nurturing touch and meaningful physical closeness.

There is clinical proof that just 10/15 mins of massage a day can calm the sympathetic nervous system down making significant difference in Cognitive behaviour for someone suffering with Dementia. That’s just 10 mins of your uninterrupted time to sit, listen and interact with your patient through the emotional involvement of touch.
I have done my own research on this with my Father who had Dementia for some 10 years. By massaging his hands, sometimes his feet, he was completely calm, relaxed and no longer agitated, as he often use to like to wrap things up, and constantly folding things up and generally feeling agitated, by the end of the massage, he was completely relaxed. For me the most interesting and touching part of this was for most of the time, he didn’t actually know who I was, but always remembers the fact that he had had the massage when it was time for his next session. This memory recall meant that he had obviously enjoyed the experience of the massage which for me was a happy and emotional experience.

When massaging someone with Dementia, Rhythm, Touch and Repetition is important as repetition creases a sense of calm and safety in their environment.

Let's create a picture to understand what this comfort massage might encompass, I want you to put yourself in the client's shoes for just a moment. Imagine sitting in your home or your room in an assisted-living facility. You don't know what day it is, you're not sure where you are, and you think you are supposed to be doing something, but are not quite sure what it is. You stare at your reflection in the bathroom mirror, then look at your toothbrush, back at your reflection, then notice your toothbrush again, and can't quite remember whether or not you have already brushed your teeth. What once was an automatic morning task now seems daunting. And if you are at the beginning of your illness, you might still realize that you have become forgetful. You might smile, you may even laugh at your poor memory, or you might become terribly frustrated, even agitated.

Aspire – Massage Skills for Workers Supporting Older People in Acute Settings

This is part of my teaching at the North Middlesex Hospital under my company
‘Aspire Massage Training’ where I worked under the instruction of Dr Sophie Edwards, Head Geriatrician (who now works at The London hospital). The Power of Touch was about reaching out to people with Alzheimers/Dementia… whilst respecting their Dignity. Communication skills and practical skills were taught amongst the class of Nurses, Occupational Therapists and HCA’s. The course ran over 2 days and covered a range of topics, followed by an exam on hand massage.
Aspire Massage Training
Accept the person for who they are
Support the person to have quality of life
Person centered care
Inclusion in community and society
Respect the person’s views, opinions and choices
Encourage the person to achieve their wishes and goals

Pilates One-2-One

 I offer individual 1-2-1 pilates studio sessions to:

  • Create tailored exercises from your massage programme
  • Teach and ensure correct technique
  • Support and encourage long-term progress


Useful fact:

Pilates is considered to be the best form of exercise for improving back pain and posture which is why it's often recommended by GPs and physiotherapists.
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Pilates – What is it?

Pilates is a method of exercise that consists of low-impact Flexibility and Muscular strength and endurance movements. Pilates emphasises on proper Postural alignment, core strength and balance. Pilates named after it’s creator Joseph Pilates who developed the exercise in the 1920s.

What does it do?

The health benefits of Pilates are many, including Improved Flexibility, increased muscle strength and tone, particularly of your abdominal muscles lower back, hips and buttock’s. These group of muscles create what is known as the ‘Core’ muscles of the body. They form the foundation of your Posture which is essential for a healthy strong body throughout your life.

How can this help me?

Your Pilates Instructor will work with you after completing a detailed consultation and assessing your needs. A programme personal to you will then be applied. Regular practice will build on your strength and flexibility.

Do I need to book a course?

Whether you are a complete beginner, are looking to improve your core strength, or have been recommended by a health professional, a course of Pilates is highly recommended to ensure you get the most out of your sessions.



Significant benefits:

  • Relieves arthritic pain
  • Helps to treat musculoskeletal pain
  • Improves balance
  • Helps with stroke recovery
  • Improves circulation
  • Reduces stress
  • Reduce muscle tension*

Active senior

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Why massage therapy is so beneficial for older people.

For our older population, massage therapy has the ability to help with many of the symptoms we associate with ageing.  Decreased mobility, joint inflammation and muscle pain linked with conditions such as osteoarthritis and osteoporosis can be dramatically relieved by improving blood flow, reducing swelling and improving range of motion.

Massage therapy has been found to help improve balance which is tremendously important, particularly in older age as falling is a common cause of Injury during the latter years of life.

“To touch can be to give life”

– Michaelangelo

Touch calms our cardiovascular system reducing stress levels as this activates the body's vagus nerve which is intimately involved with our compassionate response, and a simple touch can trigger release oxytocin 'the love hormone'

Did you know...

Come and treat yourself to a relaxing massage and unwind, or a more vigorous massage leaving you feel energised and ready to face the day.

I am 82 years old and retired. I practised medicine as a GP for 52 years. I have a personal trainer and I also run.

I have always been keen to encourage exercise as opposed to prescribing medicines. I have, over the years, become familiar with osteopaths, physiotherapists and chiropractors.

Some three years ago I met Janet and she has helped my back problems as never before.

She is a sports therapist with a profound knowledge of anatomy. She uses this to help people with stretching and mobilisation exercises. She also practises Pilates and is a superb masseuse.

She has helped many elderly people to improve their flexibility and mobility which enables them to improve their quality of life. They become happier and learn to enjoy their lives.


Retired GP, runner, 82 years old


Book appointments in my dedicated studio at my home in Stondon Massey, Brentwood, Essex or ask about home visits within a 10 mile radius from where I live.

You can also book appointments with me at any time from The Cherry Tree Therapy Centre 2 Station Parade, Cherry Tree Rise, Buckhurst Hill, Essex, IG9 6EU, or from my home in Stondon Massey, CM15 OEE
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