The Liphook Equine Hospital

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by The Liphook Equine Hospital's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from The Liphook Equine Hospital is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

www.liphookequinehospital.co.uk

THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
50 | THE LIPHOOK EQUINE HOSPITAL
Clinical Director Tim Phillips
The hospital
The Liphook Equine Hospital is one of the UK’s largest
and leading veterinary practices committed exclusively
to the care and treatment of horses. It began in 1976,
when its founder, John Walmsley, returned from Australia on
a Friday and put up his plate in Liphook the following Monday.
He practised, at first single-handedly, from a rented farm shed
and his car. The practice has since developed beyond outward
recognition, but it remains identified by its originating culture.
Clinical Director Tim Phillips offers a more detailed overview of
the company.
In 2019, a total of 88 people work at and from the site, comprising 24 veterinary
surgeons, 24 clerical administrators, 20 clinical support staff, 12 registered
or trainee veterinary nurses, six laboratory technicians, and two maintenance
personnel. Pablo, the practice cat, works only for his keep.
The cattle byres have given way to: a two-storey administration building; stabling
for 50 patients (including a tailored intensive care facility); an all-weather manège
and gait-evaluation arena; purpose-built examination and diagnostic units;
two operating theatres; and a large, modern commercial laboratory. Through
striving for excellence, through performing and publishing clinical research, and
through constant contributions to post-graduate education, the Liphook Equine
Hospital has become a well-known brand within both national and international
equestrianfraternities.
FACTS ABOUT
THE LIPHOOK EQUINE HOSPITAL
»Clinical Director: Tim Phillips
»Founded in 1976
»Based in Liphook, Hampshire
»Services: Equine veterinary
practice
»No. of employees: 88
»Tim Phillips has the following
qualifications: BVetMed,
CertEP, CertEO, DESTS, Dipl.
ECVS, Barrister at Law,
MRCVS, RCVS and European
Specialist in Equine Surgery
The Liphook Equine
Hospital
51THE LIPHOOK EQUINE HOSPITAL |
ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT
Staying true to our ethos
Our mission stays true to our founding
ethos: that clients who entrust their
horses to our care deserve the best
service that science and sensitivity can
combine to provide. A commitment to
be the vanguard of what the veterinary
profession can offer to horses and
horse owners necessarily follows –
something that requires ongoing
investment in people, equipment
and infrastructure. The three go
hand in hand, of course, but where
prioritisation has been called for, we
have put investment in people first.
In 1988, we were the first private
equine hospital in the UK to institute
a residential internship programme,
whereby new or recent graduates are
employed for limited terms to acquire
skills under the tutelage of experienced
clinicians. We currently have four
interns at any one time. Over 150 such
young veterinary surgeons have since
dispersed into the wider profession,
both nationally and internationally,
among them many high-achievers. It is
a training model that is now adopted
by all UK equine hospitals.
When both national and European
systems for the formal recognition of
specialist status in equine veterinary
disciplines were introduced in the
1990s, we were quick to espouse
them and became the first UK equine
hospital to have multiple recognised
specialists at the same practice – at
present, there are nine. We believe that
nursing is as important in animal care
as it is to human health. Our veterinary-
to-nursing staff ratio is second to
none among equine practices, and we
remain the only equine hospital that
runs a team dedicated to overnight
nursing care, 24 hours a day, 365 days
a year. Our belief is that teamwork
inspires and empowers.
CT unit
In 1988, we
were the first
private equine
hospital in the
UK to institute
a residential
internship
programme
BEST PRACTICE REPRESENTATIVE 2019
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
50 | THE LIPHOOK EQUINE HOSPITAL
Clinical Director Tim Phillips
The hospital
The Liphook Equine Hospital is one of the UK’s largest
and leading veterinary practices committed exclusively
to the care and treatment of horses. It began in 1976,
when its founder, John Walmsley, returned from Australia on
a Friday and put up his plate in Liphook the following Monday.
He practised, at first single-handedly, from a rented farm shed
and his car. The practice has since developed beyond outward
recognition, but it remains identified by its originating culture.
Clinical Director Tim Phillips offers a more detailed overview of
the company.
In 2019, a total of 88 people work at and from the site, comprising 24 veterinary
surgeons, 24 clerical administrators, 20 clinical support staff, 12 registered
or trainee veterinary nurses, six laboratory technicians, and two maintenance
personnel. Pablo, the practice cat, works only for his keep.
The cattle byres have given way to: a two-storey administration building; stabling
for 50 patients (including a tailored intensive care facility); an all-weather manège
and gait-evaluation arena; purpose-built examination and diagnostic units;
two operating theatres; and a large, modern commercial laboratory. Through
striving for excellence, through performing and publishing clinical research, and
through constant contributions to post-graduate education, the Liphook Equine
Hospital has become a well-known brand within both national and international
equestrianfraternities.
FACTS ABOUT
THE LIPHOOK EQUINE HOSPITAL
»Clinical Director: Tim Phillips
»Founded in 1976
»Based in Liphook, Hampshire
»Services: Equine veterinary
practice
»No. of employees: 88
»Tim Phillips has the following
qualifications: BVetMed,
CertEP, CertEO, DESTS,
Dipl. ECVS, Barrister at Law,
MRCVS, RCVS and European
Specialist in Equine Surgery
The Liphook Equine
Hospital
51THE LIPHOOK EQUINE HOSPITAL |
ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT
Staying true to our ethos
Our mission stays true to our founding
ethos: that clients who entrust their
horses to our care deserve the best
service that science and sensitivity can
combine to provide. A commitment to
be the vanguard of what the veterinary
profession can offer to horses and
horse owners necessarily follows –
something that requires ongoing
investment in people, equipment
and infrastructure. The three go
hand in hand, of course, but where
prioritisation has been called for, we
have put investment in people first.
In 1988, we were the first private
equine hospital in the UK to institute
a residential internship programme,
whereby new or recent graduates are
employed for limited terms to acquire
skills under the tutelage of experienced
clinicians. We currently have four
interns at any one time. Over 150 such
young veterinary surgeons have since
dispersed into the wider profession,
both nationally and internationally,
among them many high-achievers. It is
a training model that is now adopted
by all UK equine hospitals.
When both national and European
systems for the formal recognition of
specialist status in equine veterinary
disciplines were introduced in the
1990s, we were quick to espouse
them and became the first UK equine
hospital to have multiple recognised
specialists at the same practice – at
present, there are nine. We believe that
nursing is as important in animal care
as it is to human health. Our veterinary-
to-nursing staff ratio is second to
none among equine practices, and we
remain the only equine hospital that
runs a team dedicated to overnight
nursing care, 24 hours a day, 365 days
a year. Our belief is that teamwork
inspires and empowers.
CT unit
In 1988, we
were the first
private equine
hospital in the
UK to institute
a residential
internship
programme
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
52 | THE LIPHOOK EQUINE HOSPITAL
The changing technological
landscape
Our 40 years of existence have
coincided with exponential advances
in medical technology, which in turn
have revolutionised the possibilities
for veterinary practice. Supplying
the demand for such opportunities
to be brought to market affordably
is probably the greatest challenge
faced by veterinary businesses. This is
particularly so in equine practice.
Horses are a special case among the
domesticated species: they don’t fit
into off-the-peg diagnostic scanners;
they can’t be accommodated in space-
efficient cages; they have particular,
size-related risks associated with
general anaesthesia; and they can be
decidedly incoercible. Twenty years
ago, we were the first practice in
Europe to install a newly developed
MRI scanner capable of acquiring
images of horses’ lower limbs while
they remain standing. This has recently
been rehoused in a new diagnostic
imaging building, alongside a wide-
bore CT scanner that is one of
the first in the world to be able to
accommodate the whole of an adult
horse’s neck.
The capital expenditure involved
in such projects is huge; we have
borrowed and spent over £3 million
in the past decade alone, but more
is needed still. Plans are already in
progress for the design and build of
a bespoke, self-contained surgery
suite. When this comes to fruition,
ours will be the only equine hospital
to have four operating theatres, each
dedicated to specific categories of
procedure, so optimising efficiency
levels and standards of asepsis.
Therein lies the greatest challenge for
the future. The price of technological
advances has accelerated faster than
their capacity to generate returns.
This undermines the sense of security
of highly capitalised practices and
hampers succession planning by
making share acquisitions prohibitively
expensive. It has undoubtedly been a
major driver of the massive corporate
consolidation that crept into private
veterinary practice ten or more years
ago and has swept through it in the
past five.
Hence, in 2018, we decided to join
VetPartners, a collaboration of private
veterinary practices whose values
and aspirations are closely aligned
to our own. We are in at the outset
of its purposeful venture into the
equine sector, and VetPartners’ bigger
platform underpins our ability and
resolve to continue to execute our
mission. The Liphook Equine Hospital
is now poised confidently to further its
aspirational journey of the past four
decades. Even more importantly, it
is set to hold on to one of our most
cherished reputations – that of being a
place where it is fun to work.
The capital
expenditure
involved in our
projects is
huge
Gait evaluation
53STANWARDINE HALL |
ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT
Partners Fiona and Peter Bridge
The new dairy unit at Stanwardine
Hall, under construction
Stanwardine Hall is a family-run organic dairy farm that
has been in the Bridge family since 1957. A herd of
400 cattle graze across 950 acres, 450 of which are
owned and the remainder rented. The milk that is produced
is sold through multinational dairy company Arla Foods to
McDonald’s. The owners have recently invested in a new
state-of-the-art milking facility in order to reduce costs and
labour requirements. Partners Peter and Fiona Bridge tell
TheParliamentaryReview
more.
Despite not coming from a family steeped in farming history, Peter’s father bought
Stanwardine Hall in 1957 as a dairy and livestock farm supplying the local area.
Peter took over the farm in 1977 after graduating from Harper Adams Agricultural
College and with the help of his father and mother in the background, Peter has
carefully evolved the way everything on the farm works to ensure the farm is suited
to the demands of the 21st century.
Currently, we provide McDonald’s with organic milk, which is produced by our
Montbéliarde cows. Our 400 cattle graze through the spring and summer months
on a mixture of grass and clover, and with new projects in the pipeline we are
hoping to further increase their freedom and quality of life with access to new
pastures. Aside from milk income, our male calves are sold through the Market
Drayton Livestock Auctions on a regular basis as we calve our cows throughout
the year. We also keep a flock of 80 sheep on a separate farm in Wales. Livestock
sales make up around 20 per cent of our turnover, with the remaining 80 per cent
coming from milk sales.
FACTS ABOUT
STANWARDINE HALL
»Partners: Fiona and Peter
Bridge
»Established in 1957
»Based in Cockshutt,
Shropshire
»Services: Organic dairy farming
»No. of employees: 5
Stanwardine Hall

www.liphookequinehospital.co.uk

This article was sponsored by The Liphook Equine Hospital. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Michael Gove.

Rt Hon Michael Gove's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Michael Gove

This year's Parliamentary Review comes at a momentous time for parliament, as we collectively determine the destiny of the United Kingdom. 

On October 31, the UK will leave the European Union. The successful implementation of this process is this government's number-one priority.

Three years after a historic referendum vote, we will deliver on the decisive mandate from the British people. Trust in our democracy depends on it. Until that final hour, we will work determinedly and diligently to negotiate a deal, one that abolishes the backstop and upholds the warm and close relationship we share with our friends, allies and neighbours in the EU. But in the event that the EU refuses to meet us at the table, we must be prepared to leave without a deal.

As the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, it is my job to lead on this government's approach, should that scenario happen. Preparing for Brexit is my department's driving mission. But while I am leading this turbocharged effort, the whole of government is committed to this endeavour.

Ministers across Whitehall are working together to ensure that every possibility is considered, every plan is scrutinised and every provision is made. A daily drumbeat of meetings means that we are holding departments accountable, so that preparations are completed on time.

The chancellor has confirmed that all necessary funding will be made available. And we have mobilised thecivil service, assigning 15,000 of our most talented civil servants to manage our exit from the EU.

We will make sure that on November 1, there is as little disruption to national life as possible. Our trade relationships will continue to thrive, thanks to agreements with countries around the world worth £70 billion. Our country will remain secure, thanks to nearly 1,000 new officers posted at our borders. And the 3.2 million EU nationals now living and working among us can remain confident, with absolute certainty, of their right to remain in the UK.

Above all, our goal is to be transparent. Soon, we will launch a public information campaign so that citizens, communities and businesses are ready and reassured about what will happen in the event of “no deal”.

In my first few weeks in this role, I have travelled to ports and tarmacs, borders and bridges, all across the UK –from the seaside of Dover to the rolling green hills of County Armagh. I have heard from business owners and border officials, farmers and hauliers. They are ready to put an end to uncertainty. And they are ready to embrace the opportunities ahead.

Our departure from the EU will be a once in a lifetime chance to chart a new course for the United Kingdom. Preparing for that new course will be a herculean effort. But this country has made astounding efforts before. We can do it again.
Rt Hon Michael Gove
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster