A HYPNOTHERAPIST is offering nervous Bolton motorists a novel way of conquering their fear of driving.

Stan Holt, a hypnotherapist for the past six years, is using hypnosis to help drivers beat any phobias they may have with travelling by road.

Mr Holt, aged 62, of Bradford Park Drive, The Haulgh, said: “People find themselves in many stressful situations every day.

“Sometimes these situations become more serious and people develop fears and phobias of, for instance, flying, public speaking, examinations and dentists. Driving is another.

“Some drivers avoid certain roads, motorway driving and going over bridges or through tunnels.

“Hypnotherapy is able to help people in stressful situations to get rid of their fears and stress.”

It works by helping people relax which then enables a hypnotherapist to talk to the parts of the brain that cause nervous disorders, fears and phobias.

Mr Holt retrained for a diploma in hypnotherapy after he retired as a lecturer in European Studies at Oldham College in 1999.

He said: “I developed an interest in hypnotherapy when I was taken to a hypnotherapist called Mr Mirza at the age of 13 and he changed my life.

“Shortly afterwards, my mother went to him to stop smoking and she has not smoked for nearly 50 years.

“I became very interested in hypnosis at the time but, of course, young people were not taken seriously in those days.

“When I retired, I took it up as an interest originally and decided to do it professionally later.”

Mr Holt has helped several people deal with their driving nerves so far, including one who had a fear of driving on the motorway, another through tunnels and even one who did not like driving up hills.

He said there is little scepticism over his approach because people who use it seek him out first.

He said: “People come to me wanting help with their issues so they are interested in what I have to say. I take an holistic approach which includes confidence building, dealing with the particular issue and teaching the client techniques for dealing with stress.”

● For more information call 01204 529823 or 0800 0461529.