For many people, mediation is a quicker and cheaper option for resolving family difficulties about children or finances than court proceedings or correspondence between lawyers. It has enormous benefits for separating couples or disagreeing family members as it empowers clients to make their own decisions, together, about their futures and the future for their children, in a neutral and supportive environment.

Mediation is a method now encouraged by all courts as a viable and sensible alternative to the litigious court process. Haymarket Family Mediation offers “Mediation, Information and Assessment Meetings” (MIAM’s) which are often a requirement before an application about children or finances can be made to the court.

The involvement of children in mediation (for those of an appropriate age and maturity) can be very useful in cases where there appear to be differing views about the children’s opinions. If so, we may be able to meet your children directly and talk to them about their thoughts. This can be invaluable but is not suitable in all circumstances; please let us know if you think it might be appropriate for your family.

Whilst legal aid for advice in many areas of family law has been withdrawn, it is still available for family mediation, subject to financial qualification. Our mediators will be able to assess your eligibility during your first appointment.


Haymarket Family Mediation was set up by experienced family lawyer, Sheila Parkes in 1999. She trained with National Family Mediation in 1996 and gained valuable knowledge and experience by initially working with local county services. Sheila has maintained her legal practice as a family lawyer with Brain Chase Coles.

In 1999, Sheila completed an arduous portfolio process to enable her to be recognised by The Legal Service Commission as an approved mediator for legally aided work. In March 2014, Sheila achieved accreditation by the Law Society as a family mediator and also obtained Senior Mediator status with the Family Mediators Association, as a result of her extensive experience as a mediator.

Sheila’s additional training, including in Domestic Violence Awareness, Cross Cultural Mediation, Dealing with Conflict and Direct Consultation with Children, enables her to provide a professional yet sensitive forum which helps couples to move forward in their lives whilst retaining some dignity and hopefully an enhanced ability to communicate with each other in the future.

Haymarket Family Mediation has expanded to enable us to offer clients the best possible service. Last year, we were pleased to welcome experienced and accredited mediator, Liz Brown, to the service on a part time basis. At the end of 2015, Elizabeth Ford successfully completed her training as a mediator with Resolution and offers mediation for clients in a wide range of circumstances. She now continues her professional training by working towards full accreditation.

To make an appointment or for more information, please contact Haymarket Family Mediation through the website or get in touch with the mediation assistant, Rachel Nunné by telephone on 01256 350012 or by email at


client testimonials

“Thank you again for your time and advice and for being a compassionate, understanding and yet objective voice through this time.”