Cranstoun Drug Services (Formerly ‘Esher Association for the Prevention of Addiction’) was first established in 1969, by a community of concerned parents and residents of Esher, Surrey, UK. In 1971 the organisation was incorporated as ‘Cranstoun Projects’. In order to more readily reflect a broader portfolio of provision a further name change was undertaken in 1997, creating ‘Cranstoun Drug Services’.

Cranstoun House, the organisation’s first service, was established as a ‘therapeutic community’ to provide a relevant and pragmatic response, offering supported community living for those wishing to make positive changes in their lives.

Throughout Cranstoun’s ongoing growth as an organisation, a key principle of development has been to aim at establishing as complete and broad a continuum of care as possible, providing relevant and supportive services to meet the needs of drug and alcohol users at various stages of their substance using ‘career’.

Cranstoun has continued to develop further residential treatment and supported housing services throughout its history. The 1970’s and early decades saw expansion of both types of provision, which has continued to the current era, with the Odyssey Trust services transferring to the management of Cranstoun and further supported housing stock being newly established.

Building upon the experience of providing high care residential treatment and rehabilitation to drug and alcohol users during the 1970’s, the organisation began establishing links with the criminal justice system, more specifically prison establishments across London. It was these linkages that led to the establishment of the Parole Release Scheme, a residential service receiving clients directly from prison, and then supporting them into stable community living.

During the 1980’s Cranstoun’s next phase of development was characterised by further work with the Prison Service of England and Wales. Working with remand prisoners, the organisation provided a brokerage service, establishing ‘packages’ of care as alternatives to custody. With sentenced prisoners the organisation provided ongoing casework and support services for the duration of an inmate’s sentence. Work with prisons culminated in the establishment of Cranstoun’s Prisoners Resource Service, a pre-cursor to the CARAT services subsequently delivered in England and the Casework services provided across the Scottish Prison Service estate.

The 1990’s was a period of rapid expansion for the organisation with community services opening across London, the Thames Valley area and the South Coast, together with the award of a number of prison based contracts. As the portfolio of services and operations expanded the central functions were also enhanced to support growth.

During the period of growth within the UK, Cranstoun also began developing a European Network of Drug Services, working with policy makers and practitioners from NGO’s and statutory authorities and supported by the European Commission. This work now encompassed work across all member states of the European Union, the aim of which was the development, improvement and dissemination of good practice.

In 2005 Cranstoun ceased work in prisons across the UK and following internal restructure refocused efforts on developing a wider portfolio of community and residential treatment and rehabilitation. Since this time the organisation has successfully established number of services working with clients within and outwith the criminal justice system, in residential and community settings.

During 2006 Cranstoun Drug Services entered into discussions with the Odyssey Trust, with a view to merging organisations. The Odyssey Trust was created in 2002 by a previous merger of two charitable companies operating within the substance misuse sector, City Roads (Crisis Intervention) and Milton House Trust. City Roads is a well established and respected service bringing with it a wealth of knowledge and expertise in the delivery of crisis intervention and detoxification services. Milton House, again respected and well established brings acknowledged success in providing supportive residential care, post detoxification and a range of community rehabilitation services.

With the merger completed in the summer of 2007 and the addition of many and varied community based service contracts, Cranstoun now manages an impressive array and diversity of services, designed to specifically meet the needs of drug and alcohol users.