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Phoenix – How did this whole thing start?

With all the changes happening at Phoenix at the minute we thought it would be good to reflect on how Phoenix Health and Wellbeing came to be! We interviewed our Director, Gill Trevor, to learn more about the Phoenix story.

Gill Trevor - phoenix health and wellbeing

Our Director – Gill Trevor

Q: Gill, how did you get into massage therapy?

“I had worked in Marketing and statistics for a long time – about 25 years! Then my Mum sadly got terminal cancer. She wanted to be cared for and end her days in her own home.  I was travelling a lot for work and knew that I wouldn’t be able to spend time with Mum and carry on working so I left work to care for her.

I had never even had a massage let alone given one but towards the end of Mum’s awful illness I begin to realise that holding her or gently stroking her gave her pain relief.  This made me really interested in the power of nurturing touch.  Mum sadly passed away after 6 months and I decided to retrain to be a massage therapist.”

Q: And Phoenix – how did this whole thing start?

“After qualifying I volunteered at St Gemma’s Hospice in North Leeds.  I gave treatments to patients on the wards and in the day centre.  I also worked at various nursing homes with patients who had serious ill health.  These patients were usually elderly but I remember one younger man in his early 40’s who had suffered a stroke which had left him unable to speak or move. He had what is now called Locked in Syndrome.  I gave him a gentle reflexology treatment and the only way he could communicate was by his eyes and expression.  It was wonderful to see him relax. 

Q: So that was your inspiration ….but why Phoenix?

“I had seen first-hand how powerful complementary therapies could be. If you are fit and well a massage can be a real treat but to someone with a chronic health issues it can mean the difference between symptoms that are managed or not!

I also realised that the people who benefitted the most from these therapies tended to be unable to work and so had low incomes. The answer seemed to be a Charity – the rest is history!”

Q: And what about the name Phoenix Health and Wellbeing?

“Well the Phoenix is the mythical bird who rose from the ashes to fly again.  I know its cheesy but I think that some people with chronic health issues, given the right support can improve and perhaps enjoy a great quality life.  That is what we are about so the name Phoenix seemed appropriate.”


Phoenix Health & Wellbeing is a Charity (Registered number 1154273) and social enterprise.  By coming to us for a treatment you can relax in the knowledge that you are helping others less fortunate than yourself. We use the proceeds of your treatment to subsidise those who would not otherwise be able to access our therapies. Roughly £3 to every £10 spent with us will go to help others.

If you would like more information about the therapies that are offered at Phoenix Health and Wellbeing or would like to know more about our charitable work then please visit our home page or therapies page


Opening times:

Monday to Thursday from 10:00 to 20:00

Friday and Saturday from 11:00 to 16:00

Sunday closed.