Our History

The Haven was formed following the government’s strategic initiative to provide radically better services for people with the diagnosis of Personality Disorder (PD). This led to 11 pilot projects being launched. All except the Haven Project were developed as part of an NHS Trust. The Haven was co-produced with clients and as a consequence answered the needs of our PD clients very well. The project flourished for ten years and was hailed as an innovative service by NICE and recommended by the government in its “Guidance to Commissioners of Community Mental Health Services.” July 2013.

Unfortunately, the local commissioners (CCG) chose not to fund the project after 2014 when the Department of Health funding came to an end. The Haven Community then had to fight hard for alternative funding streams to be put in place. After a brief period of closure in March and April 2015 the project re-opened with the services displayed on this website.

The community has always played a crucial role in the design, the governance, recruitment, and development of the Haven Project and still does. We have been followed eagerly by the press and we are now becoming more involved within the Colchester Community as a whole. Thank you especially to the Gazette for their unstinting support!


We have received a grant from the Big Lottery awarded us £78 K from 2021 for three years

We are also involved with the Crisis Cafe in Colchester (Thursdays) and Clacton(Tuesdays. We do three sessions starting from 17.45- 18.30; 18.45-19.30 and 19.45-20.30. The programme is the same as the one we run from the Haven and you can see this on the services page. For more information please phone us on 01206 572215.