Privacy Policy


Development Forge Ltd, trading as Counselling Skills Academy, is committed to protecting your privacy and security. This policy explains how and why we use your personal data and to make sure you remain informed and in control of your information.

Development Forge Ltd will ask anyone wanting to download free information from to “double opt-in.” This means you’ll have the choice as to whether you want to receive regular updates from us, such as a newsletter, or product updates and join our update list for future released material.

You can also decide:
  • To stop receiving communications from us
  • To update information
  • To have your information removed from our systems
  • To request a summary of what information we hold on you

We are also committed to keeping you informed in the unlikely event of a data breach.

We also promise that:
  • We will not keep information for longer than ‘absolutely necessary’
  • That we hold a regular review of all data we process
  • That will we never sell your personal data
  • That we will only ever share data with organisations we work with where necessary and if its privacy and security are guaranteed.
  • That we will supply you with a record of the information held on request.

You can decide not to receive communications or change how we contact you at any time. If you wish to do so, please contact support by email at, writing to Development Forge Ltd, Pen Dwr Oer, Waunfawr, Gwynedd, LL55 4SD or telephoning 07887968179 (lines open 9am – 5pm, Mon – Fri).


Any questions you have in relation to this policy or how we use your personal data should be sent to or addressed to the Director, Development Forge Ltd, Pen Dwr Oer, Waunfawr, Gwynedd, LL55 4SD.


Your personal data (i.e. any information which identifies you, or which can be identified as relating to you personally) will be collected and used by Development Forge Ltd trading as Counselling Skills Academy, company number 13787677 and ICO number C1109718.


Personal data you provide.

We collect data you provide to us. This includes information you give when joining or registering, placing an order or communicating with us. For example:

  • personal details (name, email, address, telephone etc.) when you download any resources from
  • financial information (payment information such as credit/debit card. Please see section 8 for more information on payment security); and
  • details of your interests and preferences (such as which of our free resources you access)

If you purchase a membership as a gift for someone, your details will be recorded (as will the recipients) and your relationship to that person will be recorded.

Information we generate

We conduct research and analysis on the information we hold, which can, in turn, generate personal data. For example, by analysing your interests and involvement with our work we may be able to build a profile that helps us decide which of our communications are likely to interest you.

Section 6 (Research and profiling) contains more information about how we use the information for profiling and targeted advertising.

Information from third parties

We sometimes receive personal data about individuals from third parties. For example, if we are partnering with another organisation (e.g. you provide your information to another organisation we’re collaborating with on a joint venture). Also, as explained in Section 11 (Cookies and links to other sites), we may use third parties to help us conduct research and analysis on personal data (and this can result in new personal data being created).

We may collect information from social media where you have given us permission to do so, or if you post on one of our social media pages.


We only ever use your personal data with your consent, or where it is necessary in order to:

  • enter into, or perform, a contract with you;
  • comply with a legal duty;
  • protect your vital interests;
  • for our own (or a third party’s) lawful interests, provided your rights don’t override these.

In any event, we’ll only use your information for the purpose or purposes it was collected for (or else for closely related purposes):


We use personal data to communicate with people, to promote Development Forge Ltd. This includes keeping you up to date with our news, updates, and campaigns.

For further information on this please see Section 6 (Marketing).


We use personal data for administrative purposes (i.e. to carry on our business activities). This includes:

  • performing our obligations under membership contracts;
  • fulfilling orders for goods or services (whether placed online,) helping us respect your choices and preferences (e.g. if you ask not to receive marketing material, we’ll keep a record of this).

Internal research and analysis

We carry out research and analysis on our supporters, and customers to determine the success of campaigns and better understand behaviour and responses and identify patterns and trends.

This helps inform our approach towards understanding what and makes Development Forge Ltd a more effective organisation. Understanding our customers, their interests and what they care about also helps us provide a better experience (e.g. through more relevant communications).

Research and profiling

We evaluate, categorise and profile personal data in order to tailor materials, services and communications (including targeted advertising) and prevent unwanted material from filling up your inbox. This also helps us understand our customers, improve our organisation and carry out research. Further information on profiling can be found in Section 7 (Research and profiling).


We will never sell your personal data. If you have opted-in to marketing, we may contact you with information about our partners, or third-party products and services, but these communications will always come from Development Forge Ltd and are usually incorporated into our own marketing materials (e.g. advertisements or newsletters).

We may share personal data with subcontractors or suppliers who provide us with services.

For example, if you order something from Development Forge Ltd, your name and address will be shared with the delivery company. However, these activities will be carried out under a contract which imposes strict requirements on our supplier to keep your information confidential and secure.

Occasionally, where we partner with other organisations, we may also share information with them (for example, if you register to attend an event being jointly organised by us and another organisation). We’ll only share information when necessary and we’ll make sure to notify you first.


Development Forge Ltd ask its supporters to “opt-in” for most communications. This includes all our marketing communications (the term marketing is broadly defined and, for instance, covers information about counselling-related information and Development Forge Ltd).

This means you’ll have the choice as to whether you want to receive these messages.

You can decide not to receive communications or change how we contact you at any time. If you wish to do so, please contact or address the Director, Development Forge Ltd, Pen Dwr Oer, Waunfawr, Gwynedd, LL55 4SD or call 07887968179 (lines open 9:30 am – 5pm, Mon – Fri).

What does ‘marketing’ mean?

Marketing does not just mean offering things for sale but also includes news and information about:

  • our organisation and its business activities
  • our role in educating the students and the general public on issues of counselling and working in a helping profession.
  • benefits and offers
  • working with is
  • products, services and offers (our own, and those of third parties which may interest you)

When you receive a communication, we may collect information about how you respond to or interact with that communication, and this may affect how we communicate with you in future.


From time to time we may send a newsletter as a benefit to subscribers. We send these out to all our subscribers (unless you specifically ask us not to) and you can choose to unsubscribe from general marketing communications without giving up access to your purchased products and courses. 


This section explains how and why we use personal data to build profiles that enable us to understand our supporters, improve our relationship with them, and provide a better supporter experience.

Analysis and grouping

We analyse our support to determine common characteristics and preferences. We do this by assessing various types of information including behaviour (e.g. previous responses) or demographic information (e.g. age or location).

By grouping people together on the basis of common characteristics, we can ensure that the group is provided with communications, products, and information that is most important to them. This helps prevent your inbox from filling up and also means we aren’t wasting resources on contacting people with information that isn’t relevant to them.

Profiling to help us understand our customers

We profile individuals who opt-in through our site and our membership services in terms of:

  • How often do they open emails from us
  • How they respond to email correspondence
  • Length of engagement with paid services
  • Understanding their engagement on social media platforms, which are managed by Development Forge Ltd

We collect information on preferences and interests (e.g. which course you are studying, whether are you a student or a helping professional) so that we know what material you are most likely to be interested in.

Anonymised data

We may aggregate and anonymise personal data so that it can no longer be linked to any particular person. This information can be used for a variety of purposes, such as recruiting new supporters or identifying trends or patterns within our existing supporter base.  This information helps inform our actions and improve our campaigns, products/services and materials.


We employ a variety of physical and technical measures to keep your data safe and to prevent unauthorised access to use or disclosure of your personal information.

Electronic data and databases are stored on secure computer systems and we control who has access to information (using both physical and electronic means). Our staff receive data protection training and we have a set of detailed data protection procedures that personnel are required to follow when handling personal data.

Payment security

All electronic forms that request financial data will use the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) protocol to encrypt the data between your browser and our servers.

If you use a credit card to purchase a membership or purchase something online, we will pass your credit card details securely to our Merchant Service Stripe.

Stripe merchant service complies with the payment card industry data security standard. Development Forge Ltd will never store your card entire card details on any of our internal computer or network systems.

Of course, we cannot guarantee the security of your home computer or the internet, and any online communications (e.g. information provided by email or our website) are at the user’s own risk.


Where we store information

Development Forge Ltd’s operations are based in the UK and we store our data within the European Union. Some organisations which provide services to us may transfer personal data outside of the EEA, but we’ll only allow them to do so if your data is adequately protected.


We use Convertkit. As a US-based company, it may be that using their products results in personal data being transferred to or accessible from the US.

However, we’ll allow this as we are certain personal data will still be adequately protected. ConvertKit complies with the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework and the Swiss- U.S. Privacy Shield Framework (collectively, “Privacy Shield”), as set forth by the U.S. Department of Commerce regarding the collection, use, and retention of Personal Data transferred from the European Union (“EU”), the United Kingdom, the European Economic Area (“EEA”), and Switzerland to the United States.

To learn more about the Privacy Shield program, visit, and to view our certification, visit  

We also use ConvertBox – see their privacy policy here

We also use Teachable – see their privacy policy here

How long do we store information

We will only use and store information for so long as it is required for the purposes it was collected for. How long information will be stored depends on the information in question and what it is being used for. For example, if you ask us not to send you marketing emails, we will stop storing your emails for marketing purposes (though we’ll keep a record of your preference not to be emailed).

We continually review what information we hold and delete what is no longer required. We never store payment card information.


We want to ensure you remain in control of your personal data. Part of this is making sure you understand your legal rights, which are as follows:

  • the right to confirmation as to whether or not we have your personal data and, if we do, to obtain a copy of the personal information we hold (this is known as subject access request);
  • the right to have your data erased (though this will not apply where it is necessary for us to continue to use the data for a lawful reason);
  • the right to have inaccurate data rectified;
  • the right to object to your data being used for marketing or profiling; and
  • where technically feasible, you have the right to personal data you have provided to us which we process automatically on the basis of your consent or the performance of a contract. This information will be provided in a common electronic format.

Please keep in mind that there are exceptions to the rights above and, though we will always try to respond to your satisfaction, there may be situations where we are unable to do so.

If you would like further information on your rights or wish to exercise them, please write to or addressed to the Director, Development Forge Ltd, Pen Dwr Oer, Waunfawr, Gwynedd, LL55 4SD

We can provide you with a template subject access form that includes guidance on how to make your request (and will help us respond more quickly). Please contact us for a copy of this.


You can complain to Development Forge Ltd directly by contacting our data protection officer using the details set out above. If you wish to make a complaint (which does not directly relate to your data protection and privacy rights), you can do so in accordance with our organisation’s complaints policy.

If you are not happy with our response, or you believe that your data protection or privacy rights have been infringed, you can complain to the UK Information Commissioner’s Office which regulates and enforces data protection law in the UK. Details of how to do this can be found at



Our website uses local storage (such as cookies) to provide you with the best possible experience and to allow you to make use of certain functionality (such as being able to shop online). Further information can be found in our Cookies Policy.

Links to other sites

Our website contains hyperlinks to many other websites. We are not responsible for the content or functionality of any of those external websites (but please let us know if a link is not working by using the ‘Contact us’ link in the footer of the page).

If an external website requests personal information from you (e.g. in connection with an order for goods or services), the information you provide will not be covered by Development Forge Ltd’s Privacy Policy. We suggest you read the privacy policy of any website before providing any personal information.

When purchasing goods or services from any of the businesses that our site links to, you will be entering into a contract with them (agreeing to their terms and conditions) and not with Development Forge Ltd.

We have developed data practices designed to ensure information is appropriately protected but we cannot always know where Personal Information may be accessed or processed. While our Services are maintained and operated in the United Kingdom, we may transfer Personal Information outside of the United Kingdom if necessary.

As described above, we may employ contractors to perform functions on our behalf, and if Personal Information is accessible to a third party or to our employees outside of Ireland, we will seek assurances that such information is safeguarded adequately, in accordance with this Privacy Policy and applicable laws.

In certain cases, we transfer and store certain information outside the EEA, such as to the United States. In such cases, we use a legal mechanism known as “standard contractual clauses” to protect information transferred outside the EEA. Standard contractual clauses refer to contracts between companies transferring personal information that contain standard commitments, approved by the European Commission, protecting the privacy and security of the information transferred.

To request a copy of the clauses, please email us at


We’ll amend this Privacy Policy from time to time to ensure it remains up-to-date and accurately reflects how and why we use your personal data. The current version of our Privacy Policy will always be posted on our website.


This Privacy Policy was last updated on the 30th of March 2024.


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