Speech and language therapy: Services we offer

Children who are referred to Speech & Language Therapy will receive an assessment of their strengths and needs.

This might be through observations, discussion or direct assessment. Advice and support is then given to parents, carers, and others who spend time with the child to help them best support the child’s speech, language and communication needs.

Who our services are for

We see children between the ages of 0 and 18 years. They may have difficulty with some of the following:

  • Speech sounds (pronunciation)
  • Talking (saying words and sentences)
  • Understanding spoken words and sentences
  • Interacting with others
  • Stammering
  • Swallowing, eating and drinking

We also work with other people who spend time with the child. This might be parents, carers, school staff, nursery/pre-school staff, child minders, grandparents, doctors, nurses, physiotherapists or teachers of the deaf.

Where do we see children?

We try to be flexible to meet the needs of children and their families. Places were we work with children include:

  • community clinic venues, such as the Salt Way Centre
  • nurseries or school settings
  • at the childs home
  • virtually online

In Swindon we have some specialist teams of therapists:

Down syndrome

Deaf or hard of hearing

  • Children who have a significant hearing loss are usually seen in their home or early years/school setting. We work closely with the Advisory Teachers for the Deaf and also Cochlear Implant teams from centres such as Southampton, Oxford and Bristol.
  • The National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS) is a charity dedicated to creating a world without barriers for deaf children and young people. You can contact the local Swindon and North Wilts NDCS group.

Cleft lip and palate

  • We work closely with the Cleft Lip and Palate team from Oxford and run joint clinics with them in Swindon. Children may be then followed up by our therapist at home, in their early years/ and school setting or seen in a clinic setting.
  • CLAPA (Cleft Lip And Palate Association) is an organisation for all people with and affected by cleft lip and/or palate in the UK.

Autistic Spectrum conditions

  • Children with ASC may be seen in a range of settings, including home, early years or school settings. We work closely with Paediatricians who see children referred to the Neurodevelopmental Conditions Pathway and may be asked to carry out assessment and provide reports to inform their decision making.
  • The National Autistic Society is a UK charity for people with autism (including Asperger syndrome) and their families.

Eating and drinking difficulties

  • Our therapists work closely with a range of professionals, including Dietitians Paediatricians and nurses in the Special Care Baby Unit and on the Children’s Ward at the Great Western Hospital, Radiographers and Radiologists, Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists. Children may be seen in hospital, at home, or in their early years/school setting.

Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC)

  • Alternative and augmentative communication refers to a range of techniques that can be used to support children who are finding it difficult to communicate using their voice. It includes: signing/gesture, symbols/pictures, communication boards/book and voice output communication aids. Find out more about AAC here.
  • Children who attend Special Schools and need AAC are usually supported by the therapist who is based in that school, but they may also seek advice from the AAC Specialist Therapist. Children in mainstream schools and Early Years settings who need AAC are often seen on the AAC Specialist caseload. We work closely with the Advisory Teacher for Assistive Technology and also Occupational Therapists


Swindon has a well-established specialist stammering service for children and adults who have a stammer. Early referral is very important as early intervention has positive outcomes. The service provides support groups and regular therapy groups, as well as individual assessment and therapy sessions. Find more advice on stammering advice webpage.

  • Specialist intensive courses for school age children who stammer are run every summer in conjunction with The Fluency Trust Charity. These courses combine intensive group therapy and outdoor activities.
  • The Block Buster course for 10-13 year olds
  • The Teens Challenge course for 13-17 year olds.

For further information on the courses and the charity visit the Fluency Trust website or phone the team at the Salt Way Centre on 01793 466790 or the British Stammering Association.

We also have specialist teams who support:

  • Early Years Complex needs
  • Youth Offending Team

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