Looking for a quote or an interview? We have a team of counsellors, sex therapists and policy experts on hand to respond to media requests.
Our spokespeople offer responses to news stories, comment for features and are happy to discuss commissions for editorial work.
We also offer contributions to proposals for television productions, undertake consultancy work with programme makers and provide on-screen experts.
To arrange to speak with one of our our spokespeople contact our media team.
Key spokespeople at Relate
Chris Sherwood, Chief Executive
Chris joined Relate in 2012 as Director of Policy, Communications and Digital Services. Since joining the organisation he has been instrumental in devising the 2015-18 Corporate Strategy, developing our digital services, and growing our influencing and campaigning voice. Chris was appointed as CEO in July 2015.
Chris joined Relate from Scope where he was the Director of Innovation and Development. He was previously a Senior Development Manager at Nesta where he led their work on Co-production, People Powered Health and Ageing.
Chris has over ten years’ experience of working in the voluntary sector and prior to this he worked in Westminster and local government. His career interest to date has been on policy, innovation and service improvement in welfare to work, family support and adult social care.
Chris holds a degree in History and Society from Exeter University.
Chris’ hot topics: leadership, social justice, the effect of technology on relationships, social change, putting relationships at the heart of public policy, relationship trends, the Family Test, family justice, voluntary sector innovation and digital service delivery.
Denise Knowles, Relationship Counsellor, Sex Therapist, Family Counsellor, Trainer
Denise joined Relate in 1990 and qualified as a counsellor two years later. She maintains her couple counselling caseload, and has worked tirelessly over the last decade to expand the range of her interests and expertise, becoming a highly skilled practitioner and qualified psychosexual therapist, and supervisor. She is also a well-known media spokesperson.
Denise has a great deal of experience as a radio and magazine agony aunt and has a weekly slot on BBC Radio Northampton. She is frequently interviewed for national news stories and has gone head to head with John Humphreys on Radio Four's Today Programme. She appears regularly on national TV and radio discussion shows including ITV This Morning, Woman's Hour and many more.
Denise is married and has three grown up children - two sons and a daughter, and two grandchildren.
Denise’s hot topics: Sex, couple counselling, family counselling, Parents, relationship education and health promotion in schools, domestic violence, depression and surviving sexual abuse.
Christine Northam, MBACP (Accred), Relate Certified Counsellor, P.G. Dip Systemic Practice with Couples and Families
Christine, who has been working with Relate for 14 years, is a highly experienced counsellor working with individuals and couples coping with relationship difficulties. These difficulties can include affairs, communication breakdown, redundancy, money, parenting issues, loss, low self-esteem, depression, abuse and addiction.
She has a particular interest in the effects of divorce on families and feels that counselling support can help parents to manage their separation in a way that reduces the negative impact on the couple and their children.
Her experience includes working as a facilitator in self-awareness groups for counsellors in training.
Since joining the Relate National Media Team ten years ago, she has been widely quoted on a range of relationship issues in all the national print media. She has written for Good Housekeeping, Easy Living, Red, The Times, Mother and Baby Centre, Soap Life, Yours, and bbc.co.uk. Christine has acted as a consultant for Relate publications too.
Broadcast media appearances include: BBC Breakfast, GMTV., The Trevor MacDonald Show, Channel Four, Woman’s Hour, Radio Five, BBC News 24, Bloomberg, Community Channel, BBC Radio 4, Sky News, and many local radio stations.
She is married with three grown up sons who all work in the media industry.
Christine’s hot topics: parenting issues, affairs, communication breakdown, depression, abuse, addiction, low self-esteem, money issues and loss.
Barbara Bloomfield, Relationship Counsellor and Family Counsellor
Barbara Bloomfield started training as a Relate counsellor in Brighton in 1994 and is now Counselling Supervisor at Relate Cymru and a national spokesperson for Relate. Before that, she was a newspaper and radio journalist working in London, Mexico and China after a stint with the BBC as a radio producer in Southampton.
Barbara took her master's in creative writing at Bath Spa University and went on to lecture there in creative writing for six years. She is the author of The Enemy Within, The Relate Guide to Finding Love, The Mature Guide to Relationships, Love and Sex and the world's first graphic novel about couple counselling, Couple Therapy: Dramas of Love and Sex. She is currently working with McGraw-Hill books on Therapy Toolkit: 100s of creative ideas for Counsellors and Therapists.
Barbara works privately with individuals, couples and families. She runs Growing Bolder creative groups for older people who are suffering from social isolation.
Her media appearances include The Independent, Gransnet, Mature Times, BBC Radio Bristol and BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour.
Barbara’s hot topics: finding love (all ages), social anxiety, older relationships, creative ageing, couples work, family therapy, Asperger's and couples/families, creativity and satisfaction in life, therapeutic writing and drawing, psychodrama, poetry, play and music in therapy.
Peter Saddington, Relationship Counsellor, Sex Therapist, Family Counsellor, Young People’s Counsellor, Sex Addiction Counsellor and Online Counsellor
Peter joined Relate in 1994 and qualified as a counsellor two years later. He maintains a counselling and therapy caseload, and over the years has developed further counselling and therapy skills to meet the demands from an ever changing client group.
Peter’s special interests include work with Sexual Addiction, Counselling using modern technology such as 'Live Chat' and the on-going work and development with Domestic Abuse and Violence. In addition to working with individual men on their sex or porn addictions he runs groups for men with this form of addiction. Peter is an integral member of the counselling and management teams of the two Centres that he works in at Derby and Nottingham.
Peter has appeared on many of the local radio stations in the Midlands, including BBC Sheffield, Nottingham and Derby along with national media outlets such as BBC Radio 4, The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Times, BBC Online and consumer magazines such as Woman and Home and Men’s Health.
Peter is married with two grown up children - a daughter and son – and is now also a grandfather. Amongst many other things, he has chickens and hopefully soon some bees.
Peter’s hot topics: sex addiction, porn addiction, counselling using modern technology, domestic violence and money issues.
Clare Prendergast, Relationship Counsellor, Sex Therapist and Supervisor
Clare Prendergast has been working for Relate since 2005. She is mother to a teenage boy and lives and work in Manchester. Clare’s background includes theatre and writing; she has lead poetry and drama workshops for a range of groups including women, survivors of mental distress and people with disabilities.
She also spent many years running process-based groups in self-esteem and personal growth. She loves dancing, yoga and swimming.
Clare has appeared in a range of national and local media including The Huffington Post, The Independent, The Daily Mail, Cosmopolitan and BBC Radio Manchester.
Clare’s hot topics: reclaiming or discovering a fulfilling sex life, coping with difference, co-parenting after separation, mental health, mid-life challenges (including menopause), LGBT and affairs.
Arabella Russell, Relationship Counsellor, Psychotherapist
Arabella has been with Relate for five years. She works with couples, individuals, young people and families at Relate Mid Surrey and as a student counsellor at a local Further Education College. She also runs her own counselling practice.
Before joining Relate, Arabella spent fourteen years as a Broadcast Journalist with the BBC on programmes including Radio 4’s flagship consumer programme ‘You and Yours’, BBC1’s ‘Watchdog’ and Radio 4’s ‘The World Tonight’. When asked to explain her career move from journalism to counselling, Arabella’s answer is simple. ‘Both require’, she believes, ‘an innate curiosity about people - how we work as individuals and how we connect to others.’ Since joining Relate’s media team in 2015, Arabella has made various media appearances including ITV This Morning, BBC Radio 4’s The Today Programme and The Times.
Arabella is currently training as a Psycho Sexual Therapist. She has just finished a Foundations of Psychoanalytic Couple Therapy Course at the International Psychotherapy Institute in Washington DC and she regularly attends training days to broaden her skills and knowledge.
Arabella lives in Dorking, Surrey and is married with three daughters.
Arabella’s hot topics: affairs, relationships, money issues, family counselling, children and young people.