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What is domestic abuse?

In Bedford Borough we use the official Home Office definition of domestic abuse:

An incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse, between those aged 16 or over who are or have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality.

This can encompass and is not limited to the following types of abuse:

  • Psychological 
  • Physical
  • Sexual 
  • Financial 
  • Emotional

Support for domestic abuse

Bedford Borough is committed to support anybody who has been affected by domestic abuse, in addition to working with professionals who want to improve their knowledge and or understanding of domestic abuse.

For more information on where to go for help, local support services and or training please visit or contact us on

If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, you should call the Police on 999.

National Domestic Abuse Helpline 0808 2000 247, staffed 24/7 with translations services available.

If you are living with domestic violence, remember the abuser is completely responsible for the violence - you, your brothers and sisters, and the parent being abused are not to blame.

Please remember that if you are abused as a child this definitely doesn't mean that you are going to end up in a violent or abusive relationship yourself. Some research seems to show the opposite.

Seeing what their parent went through means some people know what the effects are first-hand and never want to put anyone else through this. Others have found that through seeing the bad side of relationships they have learnt what to look out for. If you have any worries about this, you may want to talk to a friend, relative or counsellor.

You could talk to someone at Childline - their freephone number is 0800 1111. In an emergency ring 999 and ask for the police.

Websites with more information