About Ceri

What motivates me and gives me job satisfaction? 

I love it when someone walks in stressed and tense, shoulders tight, tired eyes, perhaps depressed, anxious or not sleeping well, perhaps in pain and with limited range of movement, and walks out with their face lit up with a relaxed smile, a looseness and freedom of movement, and feeling so much more balanced and at ease in mind and body. There's nothing like the satisfaction of seeing that wonderful deep sense of relaxation and wellbeing!

I believe that an attentive and responsive touch, with professional skills, listening ear, caring heart and intuition, can connect to people at a deeper level and enable a profound release of physical and mental tension, knots, stuck energy or emotion.

It really makes my day, when I get messages from clients saying that they have had improvements in their symptoms, the pain has not come back, they had a really good nights sleep, or simply that they feel the best they've felt in years.

Why 'Holistyx'?

I am a Holistic Therapist and this approach to health and wellbeing is central to my approach - I made up my business name to reflect this.

'Holistic' literally means 'of the whole' and it is a philosophy of treating the whole person, because all parts of us - physically, mentally, emotionally, energetically, spiritually - are interconnected. To me it also implies that we are all individuals with different needs and preferences which should be respected and taken into account.

So, its important to me to get to know about each client, your health and wellbeing and lifestyle, and what you are hoping for from the specific session or from a series of treatments.

On a first visit (unless it is for Aromatherapy) the consultation tends to focus on the physical - a thorough check of medical history and of your current physical condition which may affect your chosen treatment. If you come again I may ask more about you and your lifestyle - for example about your family, what work or other activities you do, what you eat and drink, exercise, sleep patterns, stress levels. Then I can when appropriate, give relevant advice or suggestions about self care.

How did I end up doing this? 

In a way its more of a surprise that it took me till I was 34! I grew up in a family with a holistic approach to health and wellbeing, particularly due to my mum's interest.  Health was something that you looked after with how you spent your time and money - doing exercise, eating well, talking to someone, looking after yourself - not just something you fixed with drugs when it went wrong.

I was brought up to believe that talking about your thoughts and feelings, developing self-awareness, and looking after your mental and emotional health, is as important as looking after your body, your physical health.There were various complementary remedies in the cupboards to help with both. We are also a tactile family - giving a back rub or foot rub is as normal as having a hug.

As a teenager and young woman I was particularly interested in Massage, Aromatherapy, Healing, Nutrition, Herbs, and Bach Flower Remedies, and also explored Homeopathy, Crystals, Yoga, and Meditation. I knew I'd be a practitioner in the complementary health field one day.

I also grew up doing a lot of dance and some drama and enjoying performing, but knowing I didn't want to be an actor or a dancer. Well, sometimes we know what we are going to be. Sometimes we don't!


1991- 1995 Lancaster University.
A BA Hons in Religious Studies, with units in Psychology, Philosophy, Sociology and Educational Studies. I had gone planning to be a Primary School teacher but different opportunities came my way...

1993 - 1999 Introduction to T.I.E.
 While still at University I started doing some issue-based performances at health conferences for Doctors and Pharmacists with my partner Chris Wright. This was something that combined my love of performing with my interest in education. Within a couple of years we were offered a commission by a Health Promotion Officer for a drug education play to tour Blackpool schools, and from there things really took off! We co-founded the Theatre in Education (T.I.E) company Straight Up Theatre Company.

1999 - 2004 Up Front Theatre.

Educational performances, workshops and training - mostly in High Schools and Youth and Community contexts - specialising in personal, social, health and political issues such as mental health; sex, sexual health and teenage pregnancy; drugs; and anti-discrimination / social inclusion work, e.g. challenging homophobia, racism, sexism.

2004 Burn out!
I still believed passionately in our work, but for various reasons it was not healthy for me any more. I struggled for a good long while, just making myself keep going, before taking a good hard look at myself, quitting Up Front Theatre entirely and starting to look for other work.

2005 Health and Brew

I spent a few months working at a market stall in Lancaster improving my knowledge of Nutrition, Aromatherapy, Homeopathy, Herbs, and Bach Flower Remedies.

Gillisons Fine Leather Goods
I then ended up working full time in a shop on the side of the Market. As I gradually felt less burnt out, I also did some occasional performance work for 'Up Front Theatre' without resuming a management role. 

2007 - 2008 Kendal College
 I knew the time had come to follow my heart to a new career, and did a 1 year full time training course in Holistic Therapies, gaining my qualifications (VCTC Level 3 Diplomas) in Swedish Massage, Aromatherapy Massage, Reflexology, Indian Head Massage, and Anatomy and Physiology.

2008  'Holistyx' at 'Healing Hands'
I started out in practice renting a room from Isobel Hamid at her Bridge Clinic on Owen Road in Skerton.

I was now working part time at Gillisons and occasionally for Up Front Theatre.

2010 - Nov 2012 Concept Hair and Beauty Salon on China Street, Lancaster on Mondays.

2011 - 2015 Federation of Holistic Therapists Lancaster Local Support group

Isobel and I started FHT Lancaster LSG for practitioners in the fields of complementary health care, beauty and sports therapy. Initially Isobel took the lead role and organised the speakers with me in support, then in 2012 we swapped roles.

Anyone interested in health in wellbeing is welcome to attend LSG meetings with opportunities to hear talks, see demonstrations, network, and exchange information and ideas.

2011 - 2012 Holistyx Therapy Room at Christ Church Vicarage
In 2011, The Skerton 'Healing Hands' closed, moving to new premises. Happily, I was introduced to Rvd Phil Hudd of Christ Church through a mutual friend, and in June set up the first room entirely my own at the back of the Christ Church Vicarage, his home.

In November 2011, I left Gillisons, to work half a week at Holistyx, and half a week touring Schools performing in Theatre in Education programmes about tobacco and road and transport safety with Up Front Theatre.

At the end of November 2012 it was time to move on from working at Concept on Mondays to be exclusively based at my own lovely room at 1 East Road, and Holistyx started to move towards being a full time job with only occasional forays back into theatre work.

2013 Joining ESTA - the Ethical Small Traders Association
ESTA is a framework for mutual benefit and co-operation between local self-employed people and small businesses and organisations in the Lancaster area who are committed to personal development and wellbeing, environmental sustainability, local prosperity, and the common good of the wider community. Soon afterwards, 3 of us started a sub-group for Health and Wellbeing practitioners.

2014 Training in Massage and Aromatherapy for Pregnancy, Labour and Post-Natal Care
I attended a 2 day course in London with Jo Kellet of  fromtheseed, accredited by the IFPA - the International Federation of Professional Aromatherapists.

2015 "Help Yourself... to Health"

The Health and Wellbeing sub-group produced its first issue of "Help Yourself... to Health" - a free directory of ESTA health and wellbeing practitioners plus information and articles.

Ethical Small Trader Audit
I undertook an ESTA audit, giving me the right to display the ESTA 'ethical trader' logo.

Passing on the FHT Lancaster LSG
At the end of the year, Isobel Hamid and I stepped down from running the Federation of Holistic Therapists Lancaster Local Support Group we founded in 2011, happily passing a thriving group over to new Co-ordinators.

2018 10 Year Anniversary
Here's one of the cards I received, this one extra special as it was hand made by my client. 

Here's me in the middle of some of my long term regular clients who came to a party to celebrate with me. A really lovely occasion.

2019 New Premises at Alston House, White Cross Business Park
After 8 happy years at East Road, it was necessary to find a new home for Holistyx, so I moved to 604 Alston House at White Cross Business Park. See my Location page for details.

Did you read all of that? If so, wow, thanks for taking the interest and the time. :D

Would you like to know more about the therapies I offer?

Next Page: Swedish Massage.