Channel 4 to make landmark documentary filming children having psychotherapy

Exclusive: New series will follow the work of the Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust and its treatment of young people

Channel 4 has started filming a “landmark” three-part series at the Tavistock and Portman Clinic in North London, a leading light of psychotherapy and psychoanalysis, focusing on its treatment of the young, can reveal.  


The world-renowned “Tavvy”, as it is known, has said that it sees the three-part series a great opportunity to showcase its work, according to an internal report it published on the project which has been two years in development and will examine highly sensitive areas of care provision.

“Filming will take place in therapy rooms, in sessions with clinicians and at home,” say C4 who want the series, which is due to air next year, to “challenge stigma and promote public awareness and understanding of mental health.”

“The three part series – airing in 2016 – explores the unique and important work carried out by the trust and celebrates it’s outstanding mental health provision for children and young people,” C4 said in a statement. 

However, filming the therapy sessions of the very young is probably not without its risks and C4 is at pains to insist that “the welfare of the patients and families involved is of paramount importance.”

Paul Jenkins, chief executive of the institution, which famously has a statue of Sigmund Freud outside its entrance, said: “It is really important to tell the stories of young people and families affected by mental health issues, in a sensitive way, and describe the role of the NHS and other services in helping them.”


Liesel Evans, executive producer for the independent producers Century Films, added: “The series aims to give the young people a voice and to represent their experiences of mental health in an honest and open way, at a time when there are increasing numbers of children and young people presenting with issues and services across the country are facing dramatic cuts.”