New sexual violence therapies service for Avon and Somerset

  • 24 May 2019


From 1 June 2019, the sexual violence psychological therapies service in Avon and Somerset will be provided by the Avon and Somerset Sexual Violence Consortium - a group of local specialist service providers made up of Somerset and Avon Rape and Sexual Abuse Support, with Bristol-based charities Womankind and The Green House.

The service provides essential support and treatment for survivors of rape and serious sexual assault. This will include support and treatment for people aged 18 years and older who have experienced rape and serious sexual assault within the last 12 months. Children will also be seen by the service regardless of when the assault or abuse took place.

It is commissioned by the three local clinical commissioning groups – Bath & North-East Somerset, Somerset, and Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire CCGs – working with the Police & Crime Commissioner for Avon and Somerset and NHS England.

The Consortium’s service will build on the high quality services offered by current provider The Bridge Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) at University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust.

Sexual violence therapies services will continue to be provided by The Bridge until the end of May 2019 and The Bridge will remain the main SARC for the Avon and Somerset area.  The Bridge continues to be a single point of access for anyone who has experienced rape or serious sexual assault at any time in their lives.

The Consortium will offer a wide variety of therapeutic interventions from locations across Avon and Somerset and people can continue to refer themselves to the service, or be referred by a professional such as their GP or Independent Sexual Violence Advisor.

The Bridge and The Consortium are writing to service users to notify them of the new arrangements.

Further information on the new service is available from the Somerset and Avon Rape and Sexual Abuse Support website. You can also contact them by email using or by telephone using 0117 9299 556.

For information on the local Sexual Assault Referral Centre, please see The Bridge website.