We provide high quality accredited online and classroom based training

Adult Students

Empowerment Consultancy and Training CIC is based in Birtley, County Durham, providing practical equality training across North East England, founded in 2018 by Darren Taylor and Ian Atkinson.

We have extensive experience in the disability field and frequent contact with disabled people as well as parents and carers. Our training is evidence based and regularly updated to reflect the latest changes in the law and guidance and our trainers are experienced, knowledgeable and committed professionals.

We provide a range of training courses and online training aimed at employers, professionals and the voluntary community sector.


Although we are based in the North East we are proud to say that our work takes us across the UK.

Meet The Team


Darren Taylor

  • LinkedIn Social Icon

Darren is local businessman with a passion for equality and inclusion to improve working conditions and opportunities for disabled people.

From the age of 12 Darren was a wheelchair user due to Cerebral Palsy and was told he would never walk independently. However at the age of 27 he persuaded doctors to perform surgery on his legs. He told them “You worry about the clever stuff and let me worry about putting the graft in” He has been walking independently since 2013.

My philosophy is “If you want it bad enough then you'll find a way. If not you'll  find an excuse."

Darren worked as a wellness coach for eleven years within the Local Authority as well as establishing a successful property business. He credits his success to having the commitment, motivation and fortitude to succeed in a ruthless industry. “I needed a career that worked flexibly around my lifestyle and gave me the freedom to concentrate on my recovery as cerebral Palsy is a lifelong condition that requires regular exercise and maintenance to allow for a better quality of life”

Darren and Ian became friends through Gateshead Access Panel where Ian was a trainer. The charity ceased to trade in 2018 leaving a serious gap in training in the North East and thus Empowerment Training and Consultancy was formed.


Ian Atkinson

  • LinkedIn Social Icon

Ian is an experienced consultant and trainer with fifteen years’ experience in disability, equality, advocacy and inclusion, he is passionate about disability equality and fierce advocate of disability rights.

Ian is a wheelchair user and has unique insight into the barriers facing disabled people.

With a background in Service User Involvement he built a Consumer Group of disabled people to take part in Consumer Testing, Service Consultations and Focus Groups.


For fifteen years Ian worked for Gateshead Access Panel as a trainer. He has delivered courses around the Equalities Act Legislation to employers and voluntary sector organisations throughout the North East. He was instrumental in coordinating a service user involvement group of over thirty local disabled people who were tasked with influencing and improving accessibility to local services.

Ian has previously worked with the private sector, Health and Social Care, Housing and Transport Operators. 


He has a real interest in developing disability awareness in the Leisure Industry, including the likes of Hotels, Tour Operators, and the Wedding Industry, who do not always recognise the barriers facing disabled people and their families.