Aspire: who are we?

Aspire is an award-winning not-for-profit organisation based in Chester-le-Street, Co. Durham. We deliver high-quality learning, support and wellbeing services at our women-only centre and to mixed audiences in communities and organisations across the North East of England.

Our women-only centre is a welcoming and friendly place to learn, socialise and gain confidence.

At our Chester-le-Street centre we offer the following:

• Free and low cost courses with start dates throughout the year.
• Friendly support groups and services always ready to welcome new faces.
• Opportunities for you and your family to improve your health and wellbeing.
• An on-site crèche to help with childcare while you learn or get support.

Our staff are experienced in delivering bespoke learning and training to mixed audiences across a wide range of sectors and organisations. 

Our Services

Helping you

Listening Service

If you're feeling worried, upset, stressed or anxious about something, we're here to listen. The confidential listening service is for all women 18+.

Health & Wellbeing

We support individuals and groups in the community to address their health and wellbeing in order to lead to happier and healthier lives.

Personal Development

We offer a comprehensive range of learning and training opportunities for women in the heart of our community. Aspire also offers training to other sectors, organisations and groups.


Aspire staff have a wealth of experience responding to the support needs of local women. We run several support groups including Mature Friends and our weekly Drop-In Group for those wanting to meet and make new friends.


Volunteering is a great way to meet new people, develop your skills and boost your confidence while making a difference to the lives of other women. 


Our on-site crèche is available for children under 5 and offers free places while you learn or get support at Aspire.

I have been going to Aspire for many years now and have completed lots of different courses, all of which I've loved. It's like a second home, lovely friendly atmosphere. All staff and volunteers do a wonderful job in making everyone welcome in a very safe environment. I am widowed and retired and Aspire have helped me along the way to filling a huge void in my life. I would recommend anyone struggling out there to join Aspire and you will be amazed at the opportunities in both learning and enjoyment they have to offer. x

Linda Hutchinson

Whats on: at a glance

Autumn 2021
Learn new skills with Aspire’s free and low-cost courses.  For detailed information click here
Course NameDay(s) / Time(s)
Mindful Colouring                                                                                                                     
Monday 9.30am - 11.30am
Seated Exercise and relaxation                                                                                                                 
Monday 12.30pm - 2.30pm
Introduction to Drumming
Monday 2.30pm - 4.00pm
Cheap and cheerful Cooking
Tuesday 9.30am - 11.30am
Wild Gardening
Tuesday 12.30pm - 2.00pm
Traditional CraftsWednesday 12.30pm - 2.00pm
Intro to Raflexology
Wednesday 12.30pm - 2.00pm
Confident Communication
Thursday 9.30am - 11.00am
Aspire to Change
Thursday 12.30pm - 2.30pm
Indian Head Massage
Friday 12.30pm - 2.00pm
Groups, Support and Wellbeing
Stay well, feel supported and get more from life. For more detailed information click here

Podiatry (by appointment only)                                                                                                                                     
Monday 9.30am - 1.30pm
Mature Friends - Online
Monday 9.30am - 11.30am
Monday Meet Up! - Social Support Group
Monday 1.00pm - 2.00pm
Positive Changes - Online
Tuesday 1.00pm - 2:00pm
Welcome Wednesday, Social Support Group
Wednesday 10.00am - 11.15pm     
Positive Progress
Wednesday 1.00pm - 2.00pm
Stay Safe, Feel Well.  Rolling 6 week programme
Thursday 9.30am - 11.30am
Wellness (by appointments only)
Friday 10.00pm - 11.00am
Information, Advice and Guidance for the next steps
Friday 10.30am - 11.00am
All About Domestic Violence and Abuse (1st Friday of the month)
Friday 10.00am - 11.00am
All about Suicide and Self Harm (3rd Friday of the month)
Friday 10.00am - 11.00am

How to enrol*

Enrol by email only from 9am Monday 27th September 2021 to reserve your place.  Many of our courses are very popular and spaces fill up quite quickly, please reserve your place by sending us an email to

Courses start week commencing Monday 4th October 2021, places will be allocated on a first come first served basis. 
You may need access to a computer or phone.  If you do not have access to the internet but would like to enrol on a course please contact us for options. 

Crèche places are available for children under 5 years of age and must be booked at time of enrolment.
Crèche places for support groups need to be booked in advance.

If you are in receipt of benefits, it is very important that you bring along evidence of this when you enrol.  All courses start week beginning 4th October 2021 - please check the individual course listing for details and enrol in advance to secure your place