Core Psychiatric Training by Area


Introduction to Somerset Partnership NHS and Social Care Trust

Somerset is a beautiful County with stunning countryside, an excellent coastline and spectacular features, including Cheddar Gorge and Exmoor National Park, and areas of outstanding natural beauty, including the Quantock, Blackdown and Mendip Hills.  The county has good rail and road links, providing easy access to major cities and nearby airports at Bristol and Exeter.  Renting and buying houses remains affordable, despite being on the M5 corridor.

Somerset Foundation Trust provides health care for the rural county population requiring secondary psychiatric services. The Trust has recently been awarded Health Service Journal Mental Health Trust of the Year. Services are concentrated in the four main centres of population, ie Wells, Bridgwater, Yeovil and Taunton. The majority of services are provided by generic Child and Adolescent, Adult or Elderly Community Teams. There are also specialist teams including Perinatal, Eating Disorders, Early Intervention in Psychosis and Forensic, some of which are provided on a County-wide basis. The Trust is one of the first Mental Health trusts to be offering Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation and Vagal Nerve Stimulation as treatments for difficult to treat depression. The buildings are generally modern, pleasant and purpose-built.

Relationships between senior and junior medical staff are generally excellent. Throughout the County we have F1 and F2 Doctors, GP VTS Trainees and thirteen Core Trainees. Currently there are also seven or eight Advanced Trainees.  It’s a small scheme, everyone knows each other and it’s supportive and friendly. Trainees report that they easily become well embedded in the services, building up good relationships with seniors, and managers.

General adult posts will vary in the proportion of time spent on the wards and with specialist teams, allowing more senior trainees to work increasingly independently.

Psychological therapies are well developed in the Trust and trainees will attend regular Balint group and have supervision in long and short cases in the main modules.

Currently for on-call purposes the County is divided into West and East. Both rotas are approximately 1:10 and cover inpatients in the Trusts units and also carry out assessments at the two General Hospitals (Musgrove Park in Taunton and Yeovil District Hospital in Yeovil).

Postgraduate Medical Education is provided on Wednesday mornings in various locations throughout the County and is a mixture of face to face and on-line. This is an opportunity to hear expert speakers and also for Trainees to present cases or other matters of interest. Smaller Journal Clubs meet on a more local basis. There are well established research and audit departments, who warmly welcome trainee involvement.

Core training in Psychiatry has been congratulated by Health Education England for a good set of results in the GMC National Training Survey, and green flags are often achieved for teamwork and workload, and 4 green outliers.  The Core Training Quality Panel rated General Psychiatry in Somerset as excellent in 2020 and 2021.

Workload in Somerset has received green flags for many years now.  There is no difficulty attending teaching or psychotherapy training.  There are strong opportunities for psychotherapy training in CBT and CAT therapy, and several of our previous trainees have trained as CAT practitioners in their own right.  There are medical students on attachment from Bristol University, and Plymouth University, so there is ample opportunity to get involved in teaching whilst placed in Somerset. The research department has a number of ongoing projects and is welcoming of trainee involvement in research.

In summary, Somerset can provide a wide experience of psychiatry and a pleasant environment in which to begin a psychiatric career.  

We hope you will come and join us for an excellent training opportunity in a lovely part of the world.



Introduction to Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust

Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust (GHC) was formed in October 2019. This followed the merger of 2gether NHS Foundation Trust and Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust, to provide joined up physical health, mental health and learning disability services. We’re an innovative and forward-thinking organisation, with a real commitment to providing high quality services. In our most recent Care Quality Commission report, we were awarded an ‘outstanding’ rating for acute inpatient services, crisis services and psychiatric intensive care services. We develop and train our medical staff in a supportive environment with plentiful opportunities for CPD and first-class supervision from our well respected, experienced and skilled clinical leaders. As an employer, we offer various benefits to staff, including relocation allowance, flexible working and childcare vouchers.

We work collaboratively and very successfully with Health Education England (South West).

GHC has a long tradition of providing excellent training and all our educational and clinical supervisors are trained to GMC standards. In Gloucestershire, we host 7x Foundation Year 1, 3x Foundation Year 2, 5x School of Primary Care, 20x Core Psychiatry from CT1 to CT3 and up to 15x Advanced Trainees in Psychiatry. Our numbers enable us to have a close and very supportive relationship with our trainees. We pride ourselves on the strength of our Educational Supervision and actively encourage our trainers in becoming MRCPsych CASC examiners to support and assist trainees in exam preparation.

Core and Advanced Psychiatry Trainees who opt for GHC will be paid the whole of their home to base travel expenses in lieu of relocation expenses for the duration of their placement.  Reimbursement of all expenses will be provided to a maximum sum of £10,000 for the entire period of training.

We will provide support in the form of study leave and supervision to trainees who participate in Quality Improvement Projects in line with Trust objectives.

We hold quarterly Junior Doctors Forums which are chaired by the Guardian of Safe Working with the Medical Director, Director of Medical Education and Medical Staffing Officer in attendance. The Postgraduate Tutors meet with the trainees at least twice, once at the start of their posts and again at the end to ensure excellent training standards are maintained. We provide excellent pastoral care and many of our Core Trainees have chosen to do their Advanced Training with us and have gone on to become Consultants locally.

We will also offer you opportunities to shadow our senior management team so that you can get a better understanding of management and how it aligns to support outstanding service delivery. One of our strengths is that we encourage and enable trainees to not only participate but also lead service development and change.

If you do elect to train at GHC, our aim is to give you the very best training experience. We hope that this will encourage a desire to join our substantive consultant body in due course, as many have to date, and contribute to our continued future success and the continuous improving innovative services we provide for the people of Gloucestershire.

The Trust values permeate all that we do. Accessibility to and dialogue with senior clinicians is second to none. Although the Trust covers a mix or rural and urban environments, development opportunities still abound; from participation in regional and national research trials, to a wide range of Quality Improvement Projects. We have excellent relationships with Primary Care and the local Acute Hospitals Trust, and we also enjoy a very strong link with local and regional universities. We are a ‘Training Trust’ and as such, committed to the support of undergraduate and postgraduate students and colleagues, of which there are many. There are numerous opportunities to affect real and lasting change to the organisation and a wide variety of placements to maximise the potential of all trainees, as well as providing outstanding clinical care.

Gloucestershire is a beautiful place to live, work and raise a family. It offers the best of all worlds, from Cheltenham and its world-famous festivals (Literature, Science, Music etc) and Michelin-starred restaurants, to Gloucester with its historic docks and magnificent cathedral (a must for all Harry Potter fans), to the stunning beauty of the Forest of Dean and Cotswolds, not to mention some of the prettiest villages dotted around, and an endless array of picturesque walks and outdoor spaces to enjoy. The area excels in providing the basis for the highly-coveted work/life balance whilst not forgetting some of the best schools and educational opportunities in the country.

We invite you to come to Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust; bring your smile and walking boots – we’ll supply the map to your career!

Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust Recruitment leaflet.


Avon and Wiltshire 

Introduction to Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust (AWP)

Why train in AWP?

AWP is one of the largest mental health trusts in the country providing services across the South West giving trainees the opportunity to train within a diverse geographical area. The trust delivers services in popular training locations including Bath, Swindon, Wiltshire and Bristol providing care to a population of over 1.6 million people. The Trust also offers core posts in highly specialised areas of psychiatry including Addiction, Eating Disorders, Psychotherapy and Forensic services, allowing trainees to broaden their skillset and customise their training according to individual interest. Supervision is paramount to the trainee experience and prioritised by expert and experienced senior psychiatrists.

The trust has an enthusiastic and active Medical Education department renowned for supporting and promoting involvement in educational initiatives. In addition to local academic programmes, the department organises a fortnightly webinar series - this is an opportunity to share learning across a broad range of topics, including from national experts in their field. AWP has implemented a pathway to support trainees who wish to undertake audit and quality improvement projects.

There are opportunities for core trainees to undertake specific roles in medical education allowing them to be at the heart of the educational environment working closely with knowledgeable and inspirational medical educators. A trainee who recently undertook an educational role described it as “a fantastic opportunity” and another said “it made me realise how much I enjoyed teaching and how I could incorporate this into my career in the future”.

A trainee representative role and local trainee lead roles have been established to promote junior doctor engagement. The trust understands the importance of the trainee voice and is keen for trainees to participate and have representation at trust meetings. This role has helped establish a clear pathway of communication between trainees and the trust so that issues relating to training and employment can be addressed. Dr Liz Ewins (Consultant Psychiatrist) is the Guardian of Safe Working Hours providing excellent support to trainees as the chair of the Junior Doctor Forum. The forum aims to ensure smooth implementation of the new junior doctor contract and provide an opportunity for trainee representatives to discuss concerns with senior management.

AWP has close links with The University of Bristol providing opportunities to contribute to undergraduate education and develop experience in research. There is a network of trainees engaged in research strengthened by a trainee-led taught research course (SPRINT). It aims to support trainees to develop research competencies and make research opportunities accessible through connections with local research projects.

Support for developing projects and preparing them for publication is available with many trainees going on to present their work at national and international conferences. Recent examples include trainees presenting original work at the RCPsych International Congress, AMEE international conference and ASME conferences. This year, HEE funding has been awarded to the trust to address training opportunities lost due to the Covid-19 pandemic and a teaching fellow role has been created to work with trainees on this. The trust has a strong Sim-based educational programme collaborating with acute trusts to provide teaching for foundation trainees. In addition there is a thriving trainee-led Balint Scheme for University of Bristol medical students.

AWP offers trainees a variety of training opportunities in addition to providing well supported and fascinating clinical opportunities. It is a popular area to train with many of our core trainees going on to apply to for higher trainee posts within the area.