About Colleen Heenan

UKCP Registered Psychotherapist, HCPC Registered Practitioner Psychologist, EMDR Europe Accredited Practitioner, Member PARNELL INSTITUTE of Attachment Focused EMDR Practitioners

Colleen Heenan (PhD, MSc Psychotherapy, BA Hons, RMN) has offered therapeutic counselling and psychotherapy  in Bradford and Leeds since the 1980s. She is an experienced, accredited therapist working with a wide range of difficulties including depression & anxiety, eating disorders & obesity, relationship problems, stress & anxiety, low self esteem, bereavement, traumatic stress disorders and chronic mental health problems.

Colleen regularly attends continuing professional development courses to update her knowledge and skills. In the past few years she has participated in: trauma-focused CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) for PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), dialectical behaviour therapy DBT, mindfulness skills, solution focused therapy, plus treating complex trauma & dissociation. She has training in ‘psychological first aid’ and ‘critical incident debriefing’ for stressful workplace events. She is also trained in EMDR (eye movement desensitisation & reprocessing).

Colleen works to the professional standards and code of ethics of The United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy UKCP. She is also an HCPC Registered Practitioner Psychologist (Health & Care Professions Council),  EMDR Europe Accredited Practitioner and Attachment Focused EMDR Practitioner (Member of Parnell Institute). She is a former member of The British Psychological Society BPS.

Colleen’s Background

Before studying psychology & sociology at the University of Leeds, Colleen was a psychiatric nurse. She did post-graduate training in psychotherapy theory, practice and research at the University of Warwick (1986-1988) and completed her PhD at Manchester Metropolitan University exploring eating disorders therapy in 1997.

Colleen was a co-founder of the Leeds Women’s Counselling and Therapy Service, worked in an NHS Eating Disorder Clinic in Salford and was a Supervisor at Bradford RELATE. She also worked in The Well Clinic, Cottingley from 2006-2009.  As well as providing short term counselling and long term psychodynamic psychotherapy and EMDR therapy for both individuals and couples in Bradford and the Leeds area, she also offers clinical supervision. In addition, Colleen has worked as a volunteer counsellor with Bradford SOLACE, an organisation offering therapeutic support to asylum seekers and refugees.

Researcher & Lecturer

Colleen worked for many years as a Senior Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Bolton, then as an honorary researcher. Her subject area is women and eating problems plus qualitative research methods. In July 2009 she completed a 3 year NHS clinical research project (REC Reference No: 05/Q1201/54) with obese women, working with an experienced weight management counsellor, Janet Fitt, hosted by VERSA  in Keighley. The group helped women reach and maintain a significant weight loss, along with improving their eating behaviour and self-esteem.


Colleen has edited a number of special features in the journal Feminism and Psychology as well as having been a member of the Editorial Board. She is co-editor (with Bruna Seu) of Feminism and Psychotherapy: Reflections on Contemporary Theories and Practices (Sage, 1998). She is also co-author of two books (with Erica Burman et al) – Challenging Women: Psychology’s Exclusions, Feminist Possibilities (Open University Press, 1996) and Psychology, Discourse, Practice: From Regulation to Resistance (Taylor and Francis, 1996). In addition, she has written a number of book chapters and journal articles on women and eating problems, as well as  psychotherapy.

Alexander Technique Teacher (MSTAT)

Colleen also teaches the Alexander Technique, a form of postural re-education for people who suffer from muscular tension, performance stress and other physical tensions. This is not offered as part of Colleen’s psychotherapy practice but she may be able to direct you to an accredited Teacher.