Jo Brand opens new Salomons Centre supporting mental health

10 October 2017

Comedian Jo Brand officially opened Canterbury Christ Church University’s new Salomon’s Centre for Applied Psychology building in Tunbridge Wells last week.

The University’s centre is one of the largest and most established Clinical Psychology programmes in the UK, offering postgraduate study, research opportunities, professional practice and consultancy, and has had a presence in the area since 1996. Research and training areas include: adult mental health, child and adolescent development and mental health, older people’s health and wellbeing, neuropsychology, Mindfulness and CBT therapies and psychology, arts and health.

Jo, whose previous career was in psychiatric nursing, has a long association with the University, receiving an Honorary Doctorate from Christ Church in January 2014 in recognition of her work for changing attitudes towards mental health issues. She is an advocate for raising the profile of mental health and removing the negative stigma around it.

At the opening of the centre Jo spoke about the positive impact public figures could have if they publically talk about mental health. She also acknowledged the importance of the centre and its work in training professionals to help people with mental health issues. She said: “For years and years and years mental health wasn’t acknowledged. I think we now realise that we need more and more qualified and educated people who have knowledge of the diverse area of mental health and that of course includes psychologists. Anywhere that’s offering courses, such as those able to be studied at here at Salomons, is a real investment into the futures of many people.”


Vice-Chancellor Professor Rama Thirunamachandran and Jo Brand

Vice-Chancellor Professor Rama Thirunamachandran said: “Awareness around mental health issues has risen in last few years, as well as the understanding and acceptance of the issues and recognising what an important issue this is for our society. Opening this new building is vitally important to train the next generation of professionals who will make a significant contribution to the development and delivery of health and social care services through the use of psychology for the health and wellbeing of our society.”

The new building is centrally located in Meadow Road and secures the University’s position in west Kent for the long term, whilst confirming the institution’s commitment to maintaining its well established presence in the town. Previously the Salomons Centre for Applied Psychology was based on the Salomons Estate in Southborough, moving to the area in 1996.

Professor Rama Thirunamachandran added: “The purpose of moving from the Salomons estate to this new building in the heart of Tunbridge Wells was to provide us with modern facilities in a good location to continue and grow our work in Applied Psychology. It will also enable us to start to understand the local training and education needs and how we might be able to offer more postgraduate training in other areas such as business studies. We look forward to working and developing this site for the benefit of Tunbridge Wells and the wider region.”

Canterbury Christ Church University

Canterbury Christ Church University is a modern university with a particular strength in higher education for the public services.

With 17,000 students across Kent and Medway, its courses span a wide range of academic and professional subject areas.

  • Over 94% of our UK undergraduates were in employment or further studies six months after completing their studies*.
  • We are one of the South East’s largest providers of education, training and skills leading to public service careers.

*2015/16 Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education survey


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Last edited: 14/12/2018 23:23:00