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About Medical Herbalism

Robyn James
Carol Burnett
Sarah Golding


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*NEW* Janet Alton now offering Nutrition consultations

Practitioners at Alton & James

Three professionally qualified herbalists currently have their practices based at the Alton & James clinic. They all abide by the ethical standards of the National Institute of Medical Herbalists, the largest and oldest professional herbalist body in the world. As such, they have undertaken up to four years of training in herbalism, the medical sciences, and clinical diagnosis. This training equips practitioners to assess your state of health holistically, to prescribe appropriate herbal treatment, and to refer you to your GP for tests when necessary.

RobynJamesnew2Robyn James became a herbalist because of her passion for plants. She writes:

'I like to help with carefully digging out the roots of a problem. How have you come to this place, and what is the way out? I believe that many problems are rooted in imbalances between the mind, body and spirit as a whole.'

However, Robyn also gives practical down-to-earth help and advice. For example, she has fourteen years of volunteer experience with a team that provides first aid and acute herbal medicine care to summer festivals such as Glastonbury, the Big Green Gathering, Shambala and others.

As well as running her own clinic at Alton & James, Robyn also works half the week as a senior lecturer at the University of Lincoln teaching the next generation of professional medical herbalists on the BSc(Hons) Herbal Medicine programme. As an academic, she is particularly interested in the traditional philosophies of herbal medicine, and is currently researching dosage practices in western herbal practice. She is also particularly interested in studying the use of herbs to treat hormone problems, especially thyroid imbalance.


Carol Burnett writes: I gained my BSc in Herbal Medicine at Lincoln University, studying under both Janet Alton and Robyn James. I was then accepted as a member of the National Institute of Medical Herbalists.

All my life I have been very much a student of the hedgerow, living close to nature and using herbs for natural health and nutrition. This fits with a desire for a more sustainable and natural way of living. Herbal medicine offers a real and effective treatment for many of today’s health problems, and in professional hands can also work safely with orthodox medicine.

My role as a herbalist is to listen, and to help people be responsible for their own healing using herbs and informed lifestyle choices as the tools. Recognising the connection between emotions and dis-ease may be part of this journey.

I have a practical and pragmatic approach to herbalism, growing and making a lot of my own preparations. I currently teach a basic remedy-making class and am part of a team offering Herbal First Aid at events and festivals in the summer.

Sarah Golding uses herbs holistically with an aim to bring balance and harmony to the whole person. Holistic herbal medicine supports the whole person and explores lifestyle factors that may be involved with particular health conditions or imbalances. Sarah has a keen interest in sustainability and applies those principles to her Herbal Medicine practice.

Sarah’s interest in herbs grew whilst she was working as a Nurse in a busy NHS hospital. She went on to complete her Honours Degree in Herbal Medicine, and is also trained in Massage, Reflexology and Reiki, as well as recently completing a Well-Woman yoga therapy training course.

Sarah enjoys running workshops and is currently collaborating with a story teller to combine Herbal Medicine workshops with stories that have been inspired by the plants and the vital role they have in our lives.


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