Stammering Support Centre Opening

Fabian welcomed the The Speaker of the House of Commons, the Rt Hon. John Bercow MP and Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls MP to his Leeds North East constituency on Friday 2nd December 2011 at the official opening of the Stammering Support Centre. The centre has been operational since April 2011 and is located in the Reginald Centre on Chapeltown Road. The centre offers highly specialist speech and language therapy assessment and support for children, young people and adults who stammer.

Pictured in front of the official plaque, Fabian stands for press photographers together with Speaker John Bercow MP (left) and Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls MP (right)
Speaker Bercow and Ed Balls stand poised jointly to pull back the curtain revealing the opening plaque. Both MPs have a special connection with the work to help people with speech impediments. In his opening address John Bercow explained the help that he and his wife had needed to help their son. Ed Balls also expained how he too had received help in the past to overcome a stammer. Not that you woud guess this now listening to his speeches in the House of Commons.

On the extrme left is Dr Trudy Stewart, the consultant speech and language therapist who has pioneered and now heads the Stammering Support Centre. Between Fabian and John Bercow is young Thomas Grattoni-May (7.5 years) and standing next to Ed Balls is Michael Bones. Thomas and Michael made impressive speeches at the opening testifying very demonstrably the success the centre realises for those it helps.

Behind the celebrities can be seen some of the art work commissioned for the walls of the centre from artists with speech impediments.

Fabian meets three of the speech and language therapists at the Stammering Support Centre.

From left to right: Susan Clark, Claire Roland and Joanna Kitchen.

The Stammering Support Centre is one of a few centres in the country to offer specialist services for all ages, children and adults who stammer. It has been established with support from various organisations which include the Association of Research into Stammering in Childhood (ARSC), British Stammering Association and the Department for Education. To learn more of the work of the centre - Click here