A SUPPORT charity is preparing for a surge in calls as people's relationships reach breaking point over the summer.

Relate Dorset says it sees an increase of around nine per cent in enquiries in September compared to other months, and a nine per cent rise in web traffic.

This makes it the second busiest time of year, after the post-Christmas peak.

A spokesman said that relationships are often already at crisis point by the time people come to them in September.

School holidays, enforced jollity at rainy seaside resorts and financial pressures are just some of the reasons that summer can be the final straw.

Relate family counsellor Maria Bailey said: “Most of us look forward to the summer holidays. But if you’re already having problems in your relationship then the pressure of juggling work, keeping the kids entertained and spending concentrated time with your partner might tip things over the edge.

"Tempers can get frayed and families can end up counting down the days until September begins. By the time schools re-open, some relationships are in a pretty bad state.

To find out more about Relate's services call 01302 380900 or email enquiries@relatedorset.org.uk.