Get support

  • Support for those directly affected
  • Bereavement support
  • Mental health support
  • Local groups

The Forbury attack on Saturday 20th June was a huge shock to the town, affecting the survivors, witnesses and residents of Reading.

People need to be encouraged, supported and helped towards recovery. The recovery process can take a long time and may require one or more of the following elements:

  • Emotional support
  • Counselling or specialist therapy
  • Help with practical things or signposting to other services
  • Help, advice and guidance
  • Reassurance
  • Ongoing support / 24/7
  • Someone to talk to
  • Support to overcome panic attacks and fear

In Reading, a number of services and organisations are available to support those affected by the attack – victims, witnesses, and residents. 

Support for those directly affected

Thames Valley Victims First

Provides free emotional and therapeutic support to victims of crime across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire.

Tel: 0300 1234 148


Alternatively, you can use Victim Support’s 24/7 webchat:

Support U

Support U are a leading lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (lgbtq+) help and support service based in the south east of england.

We’re just at the other end of the phone, if you’ve got any questions, concerns or worries about yourself or someone else. Our service is completely confidential and private – give us a call on 0118 321 9111.


No5 Young People

The team at No5 Young People are deeply saddened and moved by the attack in Forbury Gardens on Saturday evening. They wanted to do something to help their community through this difficult time as we know events like this touch the whole community.

We have opened up our Helpline to everybody who has been affected by this attack, directly or indirectly. You can speak in confidence to a trained counsellor and receive free support. It’s for our whole community, young and old. Perhaps you witnessed it, know one of the victims, had a friend who was in Forbury Gardens, was part of the protest earlier that day, or part of the emergency response. It’s for anyone. Just text TALK followed by your first name to 07786 202430 to arrange a time to talk.

How does it work?

  • Text TALK followed by your first name to 07786 202430 to request a phone call from one of our trained counsellors.
  • The support line will be available between 17:00 and 20:00, Monday – Friday.
  • A counsellor will call you back to offer support – our hope will be to respond later the same day, but depending on demand it may be the following day.
  • Calls will last up to 30 minutes.
  • This service is not counselling, but an opportunity to get support from qualified counsellors and talk about how you’re feeling following the attack in Reading on Saturday 20th June.

Bereavement support

Cruse Bereavement Care

Tel: 01344 411919 (Local area helpline) / 0808 808 1677 (National Helpline)



Healthwatch Reading

Information for anyone affected by grief and links to support groups. 


Reading Services Guide

An information page for bereavement including details of local groups and support for children.


Mental health support

It’s normal to experience stress after a traumatic event. Even if you weren’t directly involved it is natural to feel a range of emotions, including fear and anxiety. For more information on how you or your loved ones might be affected and where to get support visit

Support is available from a range of sources and is usually free to access.


Samaritans aims to benefit society by improving people’s emotional health in order to create a greater sense of well being.

Tel: 116 123 (Every day, 24 hours)


Talking Therapies

If you are registered to a Berkshire GP and over 17 you can refer yourself for support with stress, anxiety or depression.


Every Mind Matters

Created by the NHS the website has tools to help you manage feelings such as anxiety and depression. You can create your own plan, access videos, learn more about how you are feeling and get coping tips.


Compass Recovery College

Provide free mental health support for anyone in Reading aged 18 or over, the service is also free for family/friends supporting someone. Courses are currently running on-line and are facilitated by people with a lived experience of mental health.


Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)

Tel: 0300 365 1234



Employee Assistance Programme

If you are in employment you can may be able to access confidential support through your Employee Assistance Programme.


If you are not in employment, you can access Headspace for free. The site provides guided meditations, animations, articles and videos on a wide range of topics including sleep, stress and healthy living.

Local groups

There are also local groups offering a listening ear, general assistance and helpful resources for managing anxiety.

The Alliance for Cohesion and Racial Equality (ACRE)

The Alliance for Cohesion and Racial Equality (ACRE) have teamed up with local groups such as Utulivu and Reading Community Learning Centre to provide assistance to the BAME community

Reading Voluntary Action

Reading Voluntary Action’s Ready Friends has created a tool-kit to help you feel less anxious including details of live on-line meet-ups if you don’t feel comfortable talking to family or friends.
Ready Friends Tool-Kit:

Wellbeing Newsletter

Wellbeing Newsletter contains details of local events and resources supporting the wellbeing of local residents. To subscribe please email:

Qwell West Berkshire

Qwell provides an online counselling and support service 7 days a week, 365 days a year, with counsellors online from 12 noon to 10pm Monday to Friday and 6pm to 10pm at weekends (reduced hours during Christmas Bank Holidays).  

Last updated on 30/05/2024