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The retreat was a serious investment of time and money and it was well worth it. All the therapists were excellent and I felt completely immersed in a safe and nurturing process led by Maureen. Over four days I was able to release distress following a major loss. I was able to face my deepest fears, address negative thought patterns and find strength to draw on when I am at my lowest. I hope to continue using techniques I have learnt. I have not stopped grieving but I now feel calmer, more fully present and grateful for my life.
ND, Bristol

I was in a bad place with absolutely no self esteem and was finding it a struggle to get up in the mornings when I came to Maureen for help. She put me at ease immediately: her empathy and compassion really helped me to offload. Combined with help from Maya and Louise, I transformed into a different person over the space of just 3 days and felt I could cope with anything...I'd found myself again. Thank you to these 3 fantastic women!
Helen, London

I have just returned from a 3 day , 1 to 1 retreat with Maureen, who I can only describe as a very sincere, calm and gifted lady. The journey for me was one of spiritual healing, whereby I now feel I am embarking on a new life, in balance with my surroundings. I have an understanding of who I am and have been left feeling I can deal with anything that comes into my life. It's the attention to detail, total relaxation that all compliment the therapy. I would whole heartedly recommend Maureen.
Donna Ball, Hampshire

Firstly I would like to thank Maureen and her team for looking after me so well at a desperate time. I knew I needed some guidance as I had been fighting life for 37 years, Maureen and her team enabled me to let go of all my anger, frustration and negative thoughts and see my new life ahead. The combination of psychotherapy and holistic therapies done the trick, I am now beginning a new chapter with a much more calm and happy me and now anything is possible I would recommend these retreats to anyone who is at a crossroads in their lives. Keep up the good work Maureen and I look forward to seeing you for the How to Survive Christmas Retreat in Suffolk.
Michelle Jay, Suffolk

Breathtaking!
Iain McDonald, Wales

I am writing this a month after returning from a four day retreat in Cornwall - it has taken me this long to just begin to properly grasp all that the retreat helped to uncover. I was very conscious, at the time of my decision, that I was falling apart, and try as I might, I could no longer hold myself together. Although I could feel the desperate need in me to temporarily escape the routine of my day-to-day life, I was deeply worried about how I would be received outside the obvious multi-culturism of London; as a head-scarf-wearing woman travelling alone. My fears were completely unfounded, as I was made to feel very welcome, and everyone I came across ranged from friendly to extremely friendly. I was also quite apprehensive about having to face those parts of me that I had suppressed for so long and also about what else may be discovered during the course of the retreat. Looking back, I wish I had not wasted my energy on such negative thoughts because Maureen undertook her work in a very subtle and sensitive way and I always felt I was in a very safe environment. I particularly found the combination of psychotherapy and complimentary therapies very useful and it felt very much a holistic approach. There are some positive experiences that I would like to share, in the hope that it might encourage anyone who is considering seeking some resolution in their life. I went to Maureen with two seemingly separate problems, but not only did her techniques show me that they were intertwined, I made great progress at actually overcoming them. The most precious outcome of my four days with Maureen was the release of the traumatic experiences of my childhood and early adulthood that had been inflicted by my family. I am delighted to be able to write that they no longer weigh me down and discolour my new experiences – I feel I have reclaimed myself from all the anger and bitterness of my past. Maureen has inspired in me a confidence that continues to grow and returned a clarity to my thinking that I feared I had permanently lost. Since coming back from the retreat, I have taken up indoor wall climbing, will be enrolling onto a diploma course and, in between, will be discovering my true vocation. I went to Maureen with some of the dots of a dot-to-dot puzzle, and I came away with not only all the dots, but with them nicely joined up.
A Mohmed, London

I went on the retreat when I was a a very low ebb physically and emotionally following marriage breakup and 7 years of treatment for cancer. Whittlebury Hall was a wonderful place to chill out and be pampered (the reflexology was particularly good), and the sessions with Maureen helped me to start to think about positive changes I could (and would) make in the future. It wasn't cheap but I'm glad I decided to do it!
Sue, Cheshire

I chose this retreat over others because I wanted to work 1:1 to change the way that I approach my career and to find a way to a more balanced life. Maureen's approach is a very helpful one for this because of the combination of techniques that she uses, firstly to identify the source of the particular behviour/attitude and then to apply very efficient techniques to help to break the pattern. Maureen has great insight and is committed to helping you to make a positive change.
TG, Buckinghamshire

Being with maureen has been a life changing experience.When I arrived at Cape Cornwall I was a mess of shock, horror, shame and grief following my husbands suicide. After 4 days of talk, exploration and being exposed once again to the beauty of life, I now know that I can carry on and see life for the wonderful thing it can be. I am restored by the deeper understanding of what has happened to me . I now know that I would not have been able to cope for much longer without Maureen`s help; I felt so ill when I arrived. A much stronger person left Cape Cornwall than the shell who had arrived there only 4 days previously. Boswedden House is THE place to be when your life needs transforming. The warmth, kindness and overwhelming generosity of Thelma and Nigel are a huge part of the Breakthrough to a new life. I cannot thank them enough. Maureen is my saviour. I totally recommend this experience if, like me, you recognise that you are in a dark place in need of a skilled rescue. You cannot afford NOT to do it.
melinda sproston, cheshire

I needed space and support to work through bereavement and partnership issues, and the combination of therapy, space, exhilarating scenary and Maureen's skills turned me around in 7 days. Ever patient and honest, never afraid to be real. Totally recommend this to anyone whos just stuck in a groove thats not playing their tune any more.
Anne Campbell, Herts

I've recently benefited from a four day retreat with Maureen in beautiful Cape Cornwall. I had an amazing experience that has truly transformed how I see my future. The four days were spent on a 1-1 basis with Maureen and supplement by other wonderful therapies to complement my journey to achieving the peace I needed in my life. I felt extremely safe and secure at all times in Maureen's very capable hands and she has helped me achieved results that I never thought would be possible for me. The retreat represents excellent value for money because of all the time your are given and the obvious skills Maureen has to help anyone. Also the accomodation is great with yummy food and amazing views that will always lift your spirits. I will always remember our daily walks to the sea and be enternally greatful that our paths crossed and as a result I got my life back. I have absolutely no reservations at all when highly recommending Maureen and Breakthrough retreats.
Sarah Trethowan, Cornwall

I came to England from Germany to go on a retreat with Maureen and I can say with confidence that she has completely changed my life for the better. I came to her suffering with a phobia of vomiting which was so bad that it was seriously affecting the way I was living. After spending 2 days with Maureen I feel like a different person. I now have so much more confidence in myself and since the retreat 2 weeks ago have not suffered from any symptoms of my phobia and have even managed to do things I never would have previously done and managed situations that I wouldn’t have been able to before. Maureen not only helped me with my phobia but also helped me become a more positive and generally happier person. I had recently split from my partner of four years and was extremely emotional about it but I can say that after the retreat I feel so much more positive about the future and about myself and Maureen has helped me to see things/opportunities I couldn’t see before. The retreat focused on my overall psychological health alongside my phobia which I feel helped me in a huge way what with my state of mind and my phobia. I couldn’t have wished for a better person to go on a retreat with. Maureen is a lovely lady and is very empathetic, patient and calming. I especially liked the fact that Maureen was very professional but also very friendly at the same time. From the moment I met her I felt totally relaxed and was able to talk to her with ease and comfort. Maureen was very flexible and designed the retreat especially for my needs. Whittlebury Hall was the hotel the retreat was held and I felt this was a perfect location; the hotel itself was very nice and luxurious and the food and staff were excellent. The overall atmosphere and feel to the place was very calming and relaxing. I would recommend anyone to go a retreat with Maureen. I feel that even without my phobia a retreat with Maureen would have been extremely beneficial. Taking time out for yourself is a must every now and then and I think Maureen and the retreat give you the perfect opportunity to do this. Not only did Maureen help me during the retreat but I have come away with many different techniques she taught me that I can use in the future to help me with any difficulties related to my phobia. I have come away from the retreat a different person...thanks to Maureen I am a much happier person.
Hannah, Germany

I came to Maureen in crisis. She guided me to a place of peace and happiness which was no small task. She is a bright place in a time of gray rainy days. Through a combination of therapy methods, she tailored ourr sessions to suit my particular situation. Maureen has brought tranquility back into my world!! Thank you-- you are amazing!!
SMW, NJ, USA

I had the pleasure on going on this retreat with Maureen - I highly recommend this to anyone who is wanting to change their life for the better - i thank Maureen for having given me a new outlook and a more positive mindset, all in all, a new lease of life....
Shiv Singh, New Delhi, India

i have had the oppurtunity and good luck to have worked with maureen courtney and have gained immensely, from her knowlege of handling issues and a sense of calmness that she posseses.She is a talented psychotherapist and has the ability to handle comlicated issues with ease.i recommend her highly and have sent people to her and will continue to do so as they have benefitted in their lives to become more wholesome individuals.i wish her her success
sadhana singh, india

An amazing journey of self-discovery. Thank you for helping me discover the life I was meant to lead.
LA, Leicester

Maureen is such an empathetic person and immensely patient, she takes a great deal of care to design each retreat specifically for each person so that it is especially relevant for them and the issues they want to resolve.
Ruth Featherstone, Hitchin, Herts

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Breakthrough Retreats

Invest in your Future, be Different, be Energised and Focused

Breakthrough Retreats is led by Maureen Courtney, a professional Psychotherapist who specialises in the provision of bespoke, exclusive retreats in an energising natural environment. Pioneering the Courtney Process, Maureen has had great results with a range of clients. By choosing this personalised retreat package you will be able to identify issues you need to work with and come away feeling more confident and focused.This is a unique, life-changing opportunity to expand your life and let go of damaging past experiences that stop you being the person you want to be. Call NOW and discover how to find YOUR answers.

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What is the Courtney Process

Breakthrough Retreats

The Courtney Process is exclusive to Breakthrough Retreats and is a 5 or 7 day personal development retreat led by Maureen Courtney a highly experienced Teacher. The programme is residential and held in a secluded countryside retreat allowing for greater privacy and effectiveness. During the week we will help you examine your life in detail and trace the origins and consequences of your behaviour patterns and take these learnings forward into your life now. "If you are struggling because the fear of letting go is too great, then you should consider this Retreat" Jo Lane, Age 45, Marketing Executive

Custom Retreat Centre

Breakthrough Retreats
2014 sees us move into our own Retreat Centre in Ireland The Briers. Serving as a B&B only 5 minutes drive from the sea we are the perfect base for your Retreat. Nestled in the heart of South Down, our 18th Century Country House sits at the foot of the Mourne Mountains whilst still being within easy reach of Newcastle and the many activities it has to offer. Just a 15-minute walk from the town. We work closely with local NI Bootcamp, Detox, and Raw Food experts to bring you the best of the best.

About The Briers

Breakthrough Retreats
From the moment that you arrive to the morning of departure you will be made to feel welcome. All our rooms are spacious with ensuite. All rooms have direct dial telephone and TV. The little extras that make your stay more memorable On arrival our guests will receive a tea, coffee and biscuits. Breakfast is served in the spacious dining room overlooking the gardens, while a traditional breakfast is available, we also have a breakfast menu designed to hopefully suit all tastes. We endeavour to use fresh, local produce and free range eggs.

Time & Space to resolve your life issues

Breakthrough Retreats
We are all guilty of developing negative habits and beliefs. However, this process can be so gradual that often we dont even recognise it. The fact were called Breakthrough Retreats is no coincidence we are aiming for a breakthrough which brings about the personal transformation you desire. Though this can come in the form of an Aha moment or a wave of self-awareness, all our clients will experience this at some point. Typically, this is followed by a welling up of creativity and self-expression accompanied by positivity surrounding the future.

Experiential Workshop Group Retreat with Breakthrough Retreats

Breakthrough Retreats
Unfortunately, when our negative behaviours dont produce the love we want and need, we will often blame others as well as ourselves. Whether youre looking to resolve family issues or heal your relationship, we can help. We will whisk you away to our beautiful coastal setting where I and my team of experts will introduce you to powerful ways to overcome lifes problems, be it through therapy healing, group psychotherapy or other effective treatments. In the enormous comfort of our Retreat Centre you will enjoy a safe and peaceful environment in which you can relax and unwind.

Benefits of coming on this Group Retreat

Breakthrough Retreats
Living with family taboo issues, Learn to create loving relationships and resolve difficulties, Feeling unloved and unlovable, Being bullied at school or work, Develop forgiveness and acceptance for yourself and others, Learn tools to help you communicate more authentically, Create healthy and successful dynamics in relationships that enable you to grow, Move toward authenticity and personal power to transform your life, Alter your self-sabotaging behaviours, Understanding repetitive patterns in relationships that hidden you, Move toward self-acceptance and knowledge of who you are, Recognise your projections that influence your relationships with others - Fun weekend of learning

Our next Group Retreat

Breakthrough Retreats
Love, Relationships & the Family Strengthen your relationship with those close to you. After arriving on Friday, by the time you leave on the following Monday after breakfast, having been introduced to a range of different therapies and treatments and benefited from the wealth of experience offered by our team of experts during your stay, you will be able to view your situation in a completely new and positive light. Date: Friday 5th to Monday 8th September 2014. Venue The Briers Country House, Newcastle, County Down, Northern Ireland. Price £1,295.00. For more information call 07800 570 701.

Disabled Facilities

All our rooms are spacious with ensuite, including single, twin, double, wheel chair accessible and family rooms.

Opening Times

Open all year round.

Travel Information

We are at The Briers Country House and Retreat Centre, 39 Middle Tollymore Road, Newcastle, Co. Down, BT33 0JJ