Introducing Our Practice Team
Chris Darke Director & Veterinary Surgeon BA VetMB PGCert DI MRCVS
Chris qualified from Cambridge University in 1995. Chris began working at Brookfield in 2004, became a partner in 2005 and now co-owns the practice with his wife Victoria. Chris is an Advanced General Practitioner with a Certificate in Diagnostic Imaging which includes ultrasonography & radiology (x-rays). He also offers in depth consultations for dermatology and canine behaviour. Chris spends a lot of time managing the day to day running of the practice. You may also spot Chris running when he’s out training for a marathon or two !
Victoria Darke Director & Veterinary Surgeon BVetMed MRCVS
Victoria is Herefordshire born & bred and qualified from Royal Veterinary College London in 1996. Victoria began working at Brookfield in 2004 and now co-owns the practice with her husband Chris. Victoria enjoys surgery. She also has a particular interest in veterinary dentistry. In 2015 she introduced digital dental radiography and has taken our dental care to new heights. The start of 2020 saw Victoria start her certificate in veterinary dentistry by like most thing that is postponed due to COVID19 As well as four sons at home, Chris and Victoria have two ginger cats; Geri & Hugo plus two labradors Derek & Woody that they individually rescued in 2013.
Charles Brice BVM BVS MRCVS
Charles has been working with Brookfield Vets since he qualified, starting with us in August 2016. Charles now shares his time between both our branches, tending to spend one day a week in Ledbury and the rest of his time in Hereford. In his time off Charles enjoys renovating his first home in the centre of Hereford, and walks with Dora, his Norfolk love!
Louise Howarth BVetMed MRCVS
Louise worked at Brookfield for nearly 4 years, she then moved away and had a daughter. 2017 she moved back to Hereford, and then started back at Brookfield.
She was working part time and loved looking after the patients and spending time with clients. Her particular interest lies in medicine, she is close to completing a Medicine Certificate. Louise has a blind Ginger cat at home called “Mole” who was found as a stray kitten 7 years ago. In her spare time her enjoys playing Netball and spending time with her friends and family. The start of 2020 saw her return to the team having started 2019 by adding a son to their family. She was due to take her final exams for Advanced Veterinary practitioner ( medicine) but they have been delayed due to the COVID 19 pandemic
Kelly Manning BVSc CertSAM MRCVS
Kelly started in January 2018 and is with us two days a week. She graduated from Liverpool university in 2010, and has worked in Herefordshire ever since. She holds a certificate in internal medicine which she completed in 2015. When she is not at work she enjoys being out and about in the countryside with her daughter and dogs (Rupert and Bear). She also has Neville the cat who was a stray that turned up at work 7 years ago.
Holly Sutton Veterinary Surgeon BVMSci MRCVS
Holly is a coast-loving CrossFitting creative foodie who loves to bake and decorate delicious macaron topped cakes for indulgent occasions! She can't wait to get her own dog (who shall be called Neville) and so loves a good cuddle with our lovely patients! She was born and raised on the South Coast and moved to Hereford to join the lovely Brookie team. She couldn't bring the ocean with her, so she made her new home as ocean themed as possible (including making a wave scene coffee table out of resin!) She is also a passionate wellbeing advocate, and co-runs a business alongside practice called Vetfit, aiming to improve wellbeing in the profession through exercise and social support.
Eden Tanner BVSc, MRCVS
Eden has been in veterinary practice in the Ledbury area for many years and is very much part of the local community. Interested in all rural pursuits he is acknowledged as a photographer as well as a dedicated veterinary surgeon
Lucy was an experienced receptionist who always had a smile on her face. We were very pleased to be able to appoint her as Practice Manager in 2016. She has contributed to many of Brookfield’s achievements, including becoming a Cat Friendly Practice and setting up a branch in Ledbury. This year she completed a qualification in Leadership and Management.
Lucy has a soft spot for cats which sees her having two of her own – Esme and Phoebe. Lucy obtained Phoebe when she was brought into Brookfield as a stray kitten involved in an RTA, she made a full recovery and now rules the roost.
Lottie Bradley CertVN ECC RVN
Lottie joined Brookfield in 2010 and started her Veterinary Nurse training while going to Abbeydale Vetlink College one day a week. Lottie qualified as a Registered Veterinary Nurse in 2013 and since then has had a keen interest in emergency nursing and critical care, she was awarded her Nursing Certificate in Emergency and Critical Care in March 2018. As well as getting stuck in with emergencies you will find Lottie spending a lot of her time organising and running Puppy School and currently studying for the Nursing Certificate in Animal Behaviour. Lottie was appointed Head Nurse in 2016 which involves working closely with the Vets and Nurses to help give our patients the best possible care while they stay with us.
Trish Helme RVN NCert (AnBeh), MT (Master Trainer), CCFT (Certified Canine Fitness Trainer)
Trish undertook her Veterinary Nurse training at Brookfield starting 3rd April 1994 qualifying a couple of years later.
In June 2016 she was awarded her Nursing Certificate in Animal Behaviour. And then went on to get her training qualifications. Trish is definitely an all rounder, using her years of experience in every area of the practice. Trish used to be a member of “Paws for Thought” dog display team but now co runs the Awesome Paws Performance dog training school when not at Brookfield and so can always offer some useful advice on dog training. She is also in charge of client accounts. Trish owns a family of miniature Schnauzers and has recently added a “Epic” her new cocker puppy to the crowd !
Charlotte Prothero RVN
Charlotte previously worked in a small animal rehabilitation clinic in Cardiff before training as an Animal Nursing Assistant and then on to study and qualify as a Registered Veterinary Nurse in 2013.
She is currently studying towards her dentistry Oral Care Certificate and will soon begin her Merit Award in Rehabilitation and Physiotherapy. She particularly enjoys nursing inpatients, geriatric dogs and is a Clinical Coach helping to train up new veterinary nurses.
She lives in Herefordshire with her husband and 2 young sons and run a family business in first aid training. She loves all varieties of animals but particularly German Shorthaired Pointers, of which Charlotte has 2 of her own, as well as guinea pigs.
Melissa Griffiths RVN
Mel joined the practice in October 2015. Mel was a fantastic locum nurse at Brookfield the previous summer so we were very happy that her name appeared on an application for a position. Mel qualified from a Veterinary Nursing Degree course in 2015. She particularly enjoys nurse clinics. Mel says she has been too busy for hobbies, but enjoys walking with her collie cross Lucy.
Natalie Holder RVN
I did my training here at Brookfield then qualified in 2008! I left for 2 years and worked in emergency clinics and various locum positions across the country to gain lots of experience! I returned to Brookfield in 2011 and after a couple of maternity leave stints I now work part time!
I live with Archie the golden retriever, Dobbie the lurcher, Edward and Peggy the cats, Albert and Mavis the rabbits and I also own two small humans, Jack and Hattie!
I love every single part of veterinary nursing but if I had to choose one favourite it would be nursing the geriatric dog! I'm also quite partial to taking any waifs and strays home.
Amy Newman RVN
Amy came to Brookfield as a work experience student and then we saw her through her Veterinary Nursing BSC degree placement blocks. In 2018, she completed this degree from the Royal Veterinary College and became our RVN in the Ledbury branch! However you will still catch her in the Hereford branch one day a week! Since then, she has obtained qualifications in Oral Care Nursing and ISFM cat friendliness. She has a keen interest in anaesthesia and outside of this oversees all of the work experience placements in Ledbury!
When she isn’t at work, you will find her on a Netball court or walking her sprightly Dalmatian, Louis. They also take part in Agility!
Rachel Ford RVN
Rachel qualified as a Veterinary Nurse in 2010, she joined Brookfield in January 2017. She enjoys nurse clinics, especially weight management and dental home care consults. She also oversees all of our work experience students and has a keen interest in small furries and exotics. Rachel has four guinea pigs and a tortoise at home along with her 2 children.
Rachel completed her Oral Care Nurse Certificate in 2018.
Nikki Watkins RVN
Nikki qualified as a Veterinary Nurse in 2018 from Abbeydale Veterinary College after studying for her Veterinary Nurse Diploma for 2 years. Since qualifying Nikki has started doing nurse consultations, she enjoys weight clinics and meeting new puppies and kittens.
Nikki has recently completed a dental oral care course aswell as her ISFM Cat Friendly Nurse Course.
Nikki has two dogs of her own, Shadow, a working sprocker spaniel and Roo a fox red Labrador. In her spare time, Nikki enjoys going to agility with Roo and walking the dogs.
Alicia Richards RVN
Alicia joined the Brookfield team in Hereford in September 2020 having qualified as an RVN in 2015
She has 3 children who all share her love of animals. They share three 3 fur babies, a Staffie called Leyla, an adopted kitten called Pip whom we hand reared from a 2 week old kitten, and a Russian hamster called Carrot. In her spare time she enjoys walking, climbing and supporting ‘Wolverhampton Wanderers football club.' But she will have to wear green at work not black and gold !!!
Tracy Haines RVN EVN Clinical Coach
Tracy started her veterinary nursing career within a mix practice in Hertfordshire qualifying as a RVN in 1997. She subsequently went on to train and qualify as a clinical coach in 2000. Tracy spent twelve years within small animal and mix practice before moving to Newmarket to embark on her equine nurse training where she qualified from Hartpury in 2006. Tracy and her husband Colin then moved back to Colin's home county where Tracy took up an EVN post at a local equine referral hospital moving into a senior position.
During her spare time she loves ride and one day event her pony Little Blue Paint Works with support of her husband and Banjo their border terrier. They also love to walk the Malvern Hills.
TRAINEE NURSES & ASSISTANTS
Tracey completed her Animal Care Level 1 & 2 at Holme Lacy College In 1996, alongside a placement at Brookfield for 6 months doing voluntary work. Shortly afterwards she was employed at The Argus Veterinary Surgery in Ledbury, where she worked for the next 19 years!
Tracey has a 9 yr old border collie called Kodi, a 10yr old Australian labradoodle Pinto and 2 cats Bodi and Peaches.
When Brookfield took over the Argus Veterinary Surgery in Nov 2016, Tracey continued her role as veterinary nursing assistant and is based at our Ledbury branch.
Tracey completed her Level 2 Certificate in Anaesthesia in 2017, and more recently her ISFM Cat Friendly Handling course, Cat Friendly Receptionist Certificate and BVRA receptionist award levels; Bronze and Silver. She hopes to complete her BVRA Gold award in the near future.
Georgia joined the Brookfield team in February 2017 as part of our reception team. It was clear from the start that Georgia was keen to be more hands on with all cats and dogs alike, therefore Georgia is now attending Abbeydale Vetlink Training, working towards a Level 3 Diploma in Veterinary Nursing.
Outside of work Georgia enjoys boxing, dancing and climbing, but most of all, spending time with her best buddy, Paddy. Georgia rescued Paddy from Hereford and Worcester Animal Rescue in 2017, it was an opportunity she couldn’t miss as ‘Sprockers’ have always had a place in her heart.
Lydia Llewellyn SVN
Lydia is at Brookfield for her second placement during her nursing degree course at Hartpury College
James Norton - 'Animal Care Assistant'
James joined Brookfield in September 2020 to aid the vets during consults while owners are socially distancing outside the consult rooms
Emma Winney - 'Animal Care Assistant'
Emma joined Brookfield in September 2020 to aid the vets during consults while owners are socially distancing outside the consult rooms. She is a spaniel fan with Penny & Tilly keeping her busy
Charmaine joined the team in May 2016 as part of her Business Administration Level 3 apprenticeship. It wasn’t long before we offered her a full time job to join our reception team and we haven’t looked back since.
Charmaine has come on in leaps and bounds since joining us, coming out of her shell and developing her interest in finance – So is due to start her AAT qualification this October.
Despite being the youngest member of our team, Charmaine is our longest standing full time receptionist. She is kept busy by overseeing our Pet Health Club and processing insurance claims for you and your pets.
Charmaine has taken on 2 little furries since starting at Brookfield, Mia an 8 week old kitten that came in needing a home, and Tillie a beagle X that came in via Hereford and Worcester Animal Rescue. She hopes ones day to a add a miniature smooth dachshund to her brood
Mary began working at Brookfield in 1993 as receptionist at the same time as Alison. Mary left us for a short while, but has now come back behind the reception desk, so many of our older clients will see a familiar face. Mary owns two little dogs Beazy and Molly.
Maddy joined the team in March 2018, fitting in so well with her bubbly personality. She has always worked within the pet industry, but her love for animals brought her to Brookfield where should could work closer with our four legged friends.
Maddy has completed her ‘Cat Handling Course’ which helped contribute to our achievement of becoming a Gold Cat Friendly Practice. She is also working towards her Gold Award within the British Veterinary Receptionist Association.
At home, Maddy is kept busy with her 4 dogs; Bean, Bruce, Jess and Nelly. She enjoys taking them all out on a woodland walk amongst the Forest of Dean, along with her husband and daughter, Lexi.
Nicola first worked at Brookfield when it was still owned by Norman White. She left to join the Royal Air Force where she became a ( human) Dental Hygienist, finishing after 24 years and returning to Hereford.
Nicola completed her Animal Care level 1 & 2 at Cornwall College as well as continuing to work within the Dental world and working for Guide Dogs.
She is working towards her Bronze award within the British Veterinary Receptionist Association.
Outside of work Nicola enjoys attending music concerts and travelling in her camper van " Florence THE machine". She is also kept busy with her daughter, an ageing Border Collie called Tad, 2 Chinchillas and feeding numerous Hedgehogs who appreciate the fast-food restaurant of her garden.
Tracey started working at Brookfield Vets in September 2020 having previously workedas a receptionist in two other veterinary practices in Herefordshire and Gloucestershire.
She has had an eclectic career spanning insurance, housing, community and support work. The demands of three dogs keeps Tracey busy: Todd, a rescued stray; Betty, who loves agility; and Benji, who is the resident trip hazard! She enjoys learning new things and outside of work has completed a degree in Community Development and courses including, Canine Behaviour and Socialisation, Canine First-Aid, Tellington T-Touch, a Diploma in Dog Grooming, and the British Veterinary Receptionist Association Bronze Award.
Lindsay Benjamin - Maternity Cover
Lindsey joined us as maternity cover for reception during our pregnancy outbreak in 2019. Her enthusiasm, positivity and determination to provide a friendly, helpful professional service means she has become a central member of the Brookie team. Through floods, COVID and a leg break at our team outing she has smiled her way through (we have photographic evidence !)
At home she enjoys walking the beautiful ways of Herefordshire with the two and four legged members of her family.