Online Panel Discussion - Work-Life Balance in Equine Practice


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3 Hours




Practice/Business Management

Veterinary Partner


Panel Discussion – Work-Life Balance in Equine Practice (Recorded 28 September 2021)


Simon Turner  BSc, MRCVS  -  Chine House Veterinary Hospital, UK
Julian Rishworth   B.Vet.Med, MRCVS  - VetPartners, UK
Emma Cooper  BVetMed, CertAVP(EM), MRCVS - Bell Equine Veterinary Clinic, UK
Ian Bellis   BVM&S, CertAVP(ESO), MRCVS -  Equicall, UK


Richard Stephenson  BVMS, CertVR, CertEP, MRCVS  - Pool House Equine Clinic, UK


VetPD is providing FREE access to this Panel Discussion to encourage a dialogue on this vital topic amongst vets worldwide.


Adapt or die… Do you worry about the future of Equine Practice? Why have we had no applications for our vacancy? Where have all the experienced equine vets gone? What should we do to find and retain enthusiastic vets? Can you have a work life balance in equine practice or is that an oxymoron? Can we break the mould and find new ways of working?

What can we learn from the millennials? What will practice look like in 10 years’ time? The panel of experienced English equine practitioners will try to find answers to some of the difficult issues facing equine practice today. Bringing together many years of experience, they represent a broad spectrum of the equine veterinary profession – from the traditional practice to corporate ownership and also a 24/7 out-of-hours on-call service provider.

Emma graduated from the RVC in 2006 and then completed the internship at Bell Equine Veterinary Clinic in Kent.  Emma went on to spending time in Australia during the stud season and returned to work at Endell Equine Hospital in Wiltshire for 8 years. Here Emma focused on thoroughbred breeding and completed her certificate in Equine Medicine in 2013.

Emma returned to Bell Equine in 2016 and continues to manage the reproductive caseload of the clinic. In 2018, Emma married her husband James and they now have two young children, Ewan and Poppy. Emma became head of the ambulatory team at Bell Equine in 2021.

Prior to having children, Emma was very involved with the local triathlon club and competed in long distance triathlons. More recently, Emma spends her time with her family and walking their dogs but is hoping to return to triathlons when time allows!

Ian qualified from Edinburgh in June 2006 and has been working with horses ever since – first in the New Forest, then at a Hospital in Sussex and latterly in East Sussex. He worked at the Olympics in 2012 as part of the Vet Team. He passed his orthopaedic surgery certificate in 2015.

Julian joined the practice in August 1993 and became a Practice partner in March 2000. Julian has recently retired from clinical practice, and moved on to a role within VetPartners. Julian can still be found on duty at York Races, and several competitions throughout Yorkshire.

Julian’s main areas of interest were Equine Dentistry, Stud work and conditions of the sports horse. In his own time, Julian used to breed potential event horses and Flat-coated retrievers. Snowboarding and scuba diving are his favourite non-horsey activities.

Richard Stephenson is responsible for the day to day management of the Equine Practice where he has worked for 31 years. He is a RCVS recognised advanced practitioner in equine practice. He holds the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons Certificate in Veterinary Radiology, and is particularly interested in ultrasound and diagnostic imaging. He is qualified to operate the practice’s Hallmarq MRI system. He has also been awarded the R.C.V.S. Certificate in Equine Practice, the fourth veterinary surgeon to obtain this award whilst working at Pool House. Richard is a veterinary examiner for the Worshipful Company of Farriers, chairman of the WCF examinations Board and a Liveryman of the Farriers Company.

He has served as RCVS chief examiner for the certificate in Equine Practice. Richard has recently completed an eight year term of office on the Council of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons. He has published extensively on equine matters both in the veterinary press and in popular magazines such as the ‘Horse and Hound’. In addition to these duties he is veterinary surgeon to two of the Midland’s leading racecourses – Uttoxeter and Wolverhampton. In July 2018 he hosted the visit of His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales to our new Equine Clinic.

Simon graduated from the University of Bristol in 1989. After qualifying he worked in the army for 6 years. He served at The King’s Troop RHA,St John’s Wood, Northern Ireland and at the Defence Animal Centre in Melton Mowbray. In 1995 he joined Chine House and developed the equine surgical facilities at the new hospital site in Sileby. He became a partner in 2005.

His main work interests are equine surgery and dentistry. Simon is a Riding Establishments Inspector. He is married to Edwina, a local beef and arable farmer. They have 2 teenage children, Tristan and Francesca. Outside of work, Simon enjoys badminton, cycling, hill walking and watching cricket.

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