Certificate in Song Therapy

Our Team


About the Course Facilitator

Nigel Neill is a professional community musician based in the south west of the UK running four community choirs in Taunton, Exeter, Minehead and Tiverton. He has worked extensively with learning disability groups and in life limiting care settings as well as providing on going music programmes for the brain injury charity Headway throughout Somerset; working with Parkinsons UK in North and West Somerset and providing music for those with dementia in residential home settings. He has worked closely with the mental health charity Rethink and is currently developing a music well being programme for Sompar NHS Trust to be rolled out in the Spring of 2020. Academic qualifications include a combined science honours degree; post graduate certificate in music and health (uwe) and certificate (level four) in counselling skills (uwe); four years running a school of sound engineering in the noughties and he has taught sound engineering and music and song composition at Peterborough Regional College in the nineties. Nigel recently studied music therapy for two years in Bristol, before switching to counselling skills for a third year; his professional background is music performance, recording, composition and song writing; composing original instrumental music for bbc television and recording many established artists. Nigel is married with no children and is sixty years old. He lives in West Somerset. More information here

About our External Course Advisor

Dr Catherine Pestano is based in London and is an established community music leader, singer song writer and social worker. She is chair of 'Culture &' and previous chair of 'Sound Sense'. She brings a wealth of experience to our small team. She is an external examiner for the Open University and provides our Song Therapy Network with advice and guidance as we build this is supportive movement for independent community music makers worldwide. In 2019 she was awarded a Doctorate by Winchester University as acknowledgement of her contribution to practice in diversity, community music and social work. More information here

About our Student Support Officer

Claire Chappel is an experienced BACP* qualified counsellor and provides formal and informal support to students who might be facing challenges in their music making workplaces. She offers support via telephone, email and ZOOM. Her services are currently supplied free of charge to students. She is based in West Somerset, UK. More information here.

*British Association of Counsellors and Psychotherapists

About our Mindfulness Facilitator

Lynsey Wellington is a highly experienced mindfulness practitioner who delivers a two hour unit attached to module three of the course. In addition she advises on developments in mindfulness practice and offers her own programmes of mindfulness training. She is based in Gloucestershire, UK. More information here.


Nigel Neill
Course Facilitator
Dr Catherine

External Course Advisor
Clare Chappel
Student Welfare & Supervision
Lynsey Wellington