Serious injury lawyers help Headway project in Preston and Chorley


Preston and Manchester-based Birchall Blackburn Law has committed to funding Headway’s Art Therapy Project for the next 12 months. The project gives vital respite to people and their loved-ones affected by brain injury.

The monthly art sessions have been run for nearly two years and encourage individuals coming to terms with a catastrophic brain injury, to express and understand their emotions through art and the creative process.

Pam Dearden, Headway’s art tutor, had not picked up a brush or pencil since leaving school but returned to art to help her cope after her husband, Andrew, was diagnosed with a brain tumour. She has since gained a degree in fine art, and is now an artist and qualified teacher.

Pam says: “You are so focused on the creative process that you forget everything else going on in your life. Art takes you out of the logic of your brain and into the flow of what you’re doing. It makes you feel calmer and more able to express emotions, which is very important after brain injury.

David Liddell suffered a serious brain injury and lost most of his sight after an accident. He is a regular member of the Art Therapy Project and says: “Art means a lot to me and the sessions are really good and fun. They have also helped with my confidence. If you had asked me last year for an interview, I would never have done it.

Liz Bamber, Headway Development Officer, says: “Our members have gained so much from taking part in the Art Therapy Project and we’re delighted that Birchall Blackburn Law has committed to funding its future.

Dianne Yates, Partner and Head of Serious and Catastrophic Injury for Birchall Blackburn Law, says: “It’s usual for us to meet someone with a brain injury soon after their lives have been devastated by an accident or illness. They haven’t begun to think about the future. So to meet sufferers when they’ve had help from Headway is inspiring and life affirming. The work the charity does is incredible and we’ll support them in any way we can.”

Despite the growing number of people living with an acquired brain injury, the general public and some public services remain largely unaware of the complicated and devastating impact the disability has on a person’s character and social skills. In many cases, it is impossible to tell if someone is suffering from a brain injury by looking at them, but the injury can cause profound psychological changes that alter behaviour drastically and this has an impact on every aspect of their lives.

Headway works to promote understanding of all aspects of brain injury and campaigns to reduce the incidence of acquired brain injuries through education, promoting the use of cycling helmets, reducing car speeds and improving road safety.

The Headway Art Therapy Project workshops are held on the last Tuesday of the month from 1pm to 4pm at the Salvation Army Centre, Harrington Street, Preston PR1 7BN. For more information go to or call 07557 123 493.

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