A CHARITY set up to improve the mental health of men through woodland based therapy has received a welcome funding boost.

Heart Wood was launched by psychotherapist Chip Ponsford in July, following the successful outcomes of pilot schemes completed by himself and fellow pyschotherapist Rab Erskine, along with the Northumberland Domestic Abuse Service (NDAS).

The charity works to improve the mental health of people, focusing on men, through woodland-based, person-centred counselling and therapy.

Now, the charity has been awarded an £87,712 grant from the National Lottery Community Fund.

The money will be used to run two ecotherapy groups a week, as well as training more therapists who will then be able to offer similar sessions.

One is held in private woodland near Slaley for men aged over 25, while a second group for men aged between 18-25 is held in woodland near Ponteland.

Read more in this week's Hexham Courant.