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The Sandy Murray Memorial Award


Update : 26/06/2020 : This years competition is now closed.

Update : 29/06/2020 :

Due to the COVID pandemic we have had to make some changes to the rules, which are outlined below. . .

The competition rules indicate that the winner will be announced at the PPS AGM which was due to be held in Dublin on the 7th November 2020. Due to the COVID pandemic – we have cancelled this event and will instead be hosting an online AGM on the 15th January 2021.

The Board of Trustees will publish their decision on our website at on the 7th August 2020 and the winning essays will be published along with the announcement. Winning entrants will be informed by myself in advance of this. Arrangements for the presentation of the prize will be made between PPS and the winner once they have been informed of the result.

The winner will be invited to either write or record a message that will be broadcast at the AGM.

Update : 07/08/2020

The PPS Board of Trustees are delighted to announce the winner of the 2019/20 Essay Competition. The Board received 12 entries in total. They wish to thank every contributor to this years competition and wish to state that all entries were of a very high standard. This years winner is Jenny Oyston. Her submission "Key strategies to avoid burnout" can be read here.



What is the Sandy Murray Memorial Award?

Sandy Murray

At the instance of the Trustees of the Psychologists Protection Society, the Murray Family have agreed to offer a bi-annual prize to honour the life work and dedication to the Society by founder Sandy Murray. Since Sandy’s passing in 2014, many members have provided testimony as to the helpful support received from Sandy throughout his 40 year service and how he encouraged, inspired and enabled Members to face the difficulties which cropped up in their life as a therapist.

Who was Sandy Murray?

Sandy Murray, who passed away in 2014, was Secretary of the Psychologists Protection Society and servant to our PPS members for 40 years.  The Psychologists Protection Society was formed in 1974 out of an indemnity scheme operated by the British Psychological Society. Sandy, a Clinical Psychologist himself and one of first in the UK to establish an exclusively private practice, took over the scheme and created a new organisation, inviting his fellow professionals to join him.  Sandy made himself available to members 24/7 providing practical, sensible, in-depth advice to those in difficulties in a sympathetic and caring manner.  If a member required at phone call at 6 o’clock in the morning, Sandy was ready and waiting.  If a member needed to chat face to face, Sandy was on the next train.  Under  Sandy’s careful stewardship the Society grew from 200 members in 1974 to over 5300 in 2014.

What is the prize?

  • The presentation of an engraved glass trophy inscribed with citation SANDY MURRAY MEMORIAL AWARD, with the winner being able to retain an engraved glass keepsake
  • A money prize of £500, donated by the Murray family
  • The winners will be named perpetually on PPS literature and online media streams

For more information and competition rules click here

Who can enter?

The competition is open to members of the Psychologists Protection Society Trust on the closing date of this competition. For more information and competition rules click here

What is the topic?

You are asked to write a 2000 word essay that describes your key strategies to avoid burnout as a professional, or a trainee therapeutic practitioner, thereby enabling and maintaining  safe, compassionate and effective therapy.

How can I find out more and apply?

  • Click here to download the document - "Sandy Murray Memorial Award - 2019/20 Essay Competition - Entrants Information"
  • Click here to download the document "Sandy Murray Memorial Award - 2019/20 Essay Competition - Entry Form"



2018 Sandy Murray Memorial Award Winner

Sue Lieberman - 2018 Winner


Psychologists Protection Society Trustee Owen Connolly was very pleased to introduce the winner of 2018 The Sandy Murray Memorial Award - Sue Lieberman, at the Trust AGM in Manchester on the 2nd November 2018. Sue was invited to attend the event and was presented with her Award – a Glass Engraved Trophy and a cheque for £500 for her winning essay - "In The Relational Space".

Many congratulations from the Trustees, staff and members of the Psychologists Protection Society!

You can download and read Sue's winning entry below.

Previous Competition Winners

  1. 2020 - Jenny Oyston - Key strategies to avoid burnout.
  2. 2018 - Sue Lieberman - In the relational space
  3. 2016 – Miss Laura McGuiness – Going it alone: Private Practice & Ethical Standards