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Kennedy, H. (1978). The Hampstead Centre for the Psychoanalytic Study and Treatment of Children. Bul. Anna Freud Centre, 1(1):7-10.

(1978). Bulletin of the Anna Freud Centre, 1(1):7-10

The Hampstead Centre for the Psychoanalytic Study and Treatment of Children

Hansi Kennedy

The Hampstead Clinic opened in February 1952 and the Child Therapy Training Course began 5 years earlier. However, our real origins can be traced even further back to the Hampstead War Nurseries directed by Anna Freud and Dorothy Burlingham.

The links are manifold and not only that both organisations were found, nurtured, directed and inspired by Anna Freud. A small core of former nursery workers are staff members of the Clinic to this day. Some of the former nursery children have remained in contact and a number have brought their own children to the Well-Baby Clinic or the Nursery School of the Hampstead Clinic. More important, of course, are the scientific links. The opportunity to observe a relatively large group of children in institutional care throughout their formative years has taught us a great deal about developmental needs and problems. It has probably influenced the Clinic's choice of later research projects and our continued interest in developmental studies.

I have no doubt in my mind that this historical background has been a beneficial influence on our work. Although many of the younger members of staff joined us at later stages of our development, all have undergone a common training and have similar aims and interests to those of us who have been there from the earliest days. Our shared experiences of working together over a very considerable period of time have given us stability and continuity in spite of the potentially economic uncertainty that total dependence on foundations and individual donations for financial support entails.

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