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About us

About the practice

Abbotswood Veterinary Centre was established in 1991 as a local independent practice for clients and their pets. We pride ourselves on providing a personal touch to our clients' needs, many of whom have been with the practice for years.
We endeavour to provide the highest standards of care by continually investing in the latest equipment and staff training. We are an official training practice for Registered Veterinary Nurses with all our current nurses having been trained in-house.
The practice is owned and managed by Dr Hannah Scott who took over from Dr Patrick Murphy in 2019. Patrick has since fully retired from clinical work. 

Our long standing clients will be familiar with our team but for those new to us read on for more information below. 

Meet the team

Dr Hannah Scott, MRCVS

Hannah qualified from Liverpool University with honours in 2011 and worked in both first opinion and emergency and critical care before starting locum work in the South West. Hannah previously enjoyed a long standing locum relationship with the practice. In late 2019 the opportunity to purchase the practice arose with Dr Murphy looking to take a step back from the day-to-day of the business. As practice owner, Hannah is focused on continuing to provide the personal touch our clients are accustomed to whilst modernising the practice to provide the best standard of care possible.

Hannah's other interests include going to the gym and an African Grey parrot called Lola who can sometimes been seen around the practice entertaining clients!

Kate O'Neill, RVN

Kate joined Abbotswood Veterinary Centre as a nursing assistant back in 1997 while keeping several horses at a local yard. 

After taking a short break from nursing in 2001 to have her daughter, she returned in 2007 to continue nursing here at Abbotswood. Kate became a fully qualified veterinary nurse in 2013 and has now taken a further qualification in small animal nutrition so is able to guide our clients on food choices for health, clinical conditions and weight management. 

Kate has an English Pointer, Otis, who she and her daughter enjoy training together. Otis is a top student qualifying for Crufts 2018!


Heidi Dixon

Heidi is the newest addition to the team and is currently training to become Registered Veterinary Nurse. She has been a client of the practice for many years and worked on farms after leaving school so she is well used to looking after animals.

Outside of work she spends time riding her horse, Maisy, and walking and working her Cocker spaniels, Darcey and Pixie.

Tracy Stainthorpe

Tracy joined the team in 1995 in a nursing assistant role but since having children has moved to become the accounts manager. She deals with insurance claims as well puppy behaviour and advice.

Tracy has a French bulldog called Mila who she enjoys walking in her spare time.


Dr Grace Paxton MRCVS

Grace qualified from Bristol University in 2020 and spent her first few years in small animal practice in Wales before joining Abbotswood in 2022. She was already familiar with the practice as she visited for placements during her training. Grace developed an interest in behaviour after adopting her rescue dog, Piper, and is currently working towards becoming a registered veterinary behaviourist with the ABTC/ABPC. 

In addition to spending time with Piper, Grace is a competitive powerlifter and enjoys playing Dungeons and Dragons. 

Jenny Smith, RVN

Jenny qualified as a Registered Veterinary Nurse in 2014 and then obtained the Level 3 Award in Education and Training in 2017 which led to a lecture/tutor position at a veterinary nursing college and an OSCE examiner role. She has recently started a further certificate in feline nursing which is one of her interests along with rabbits and small furries. 


Jenny combines her passion for education and clinical work in practice ensuring the high standards required of a veterinary nurse training practice are met. Abbotswood Veterinary Centre are a proud supporter of Jenny and share her commitment to training the student veterinary nurses of the future.

Outside of work Jenny enjoys walking her whippet, Star, and looking after her two tortoises, Tipps and Ally. 

Gill Chapman

Gill makes up our reception team alongside Alyson and is our longest standing employee, joining the practice in 1981. Gill has owned a variety of animals and has a keen interest in dog behaviour, training and working. This was largely due to her first Springer 'Abby', a rescue dog that was named after Abbotswood. Currently Gill has a two working Cocker Spaniels, Rain and Breeze. Gill taught for 13 years at a local Kennel Club registered dog training club and she is a 'Good Citizen Award Scheme' examiner.


Alyson Jellings

Alyson is one half of our reception team and, although she is a relative newcomer to the team, she has been a familiar face in the practice for the best part of 30 years as she was one of Abbotswood's first clients when we opened!


Her Shih-tzu, Toby, is one of our much-loved patients and when she is not spending time with him, Alyson can be found gardening as she is quite green-fingered following many years working as a florist.

Meet the Team

Staff pets


Lola is Hannah’s African Grey parrot who as you can see enjoys posing for the camera! She also enjoys singing, dancing and scrounging food which has led to her being known as the ‘winged Labrador’!

Tipps & Ally

Tipps and Ally are Jenny’s tortoises and they are around 15 years old now. They have an unhealthy obsession with Croc shoes and also enjoy eating cucumber!


Rain is Gill’s working cocker spaniel and has enjoyed great success in working tests under Gill’s watchful eye.



Toby is Alyson’s Shih-tzu



Piper is Grace’s Romanian rescue dog and she enjoys scent work and training in between naps.



Breeze is Gill’s younger Cocker Spaniel and she is in training with Rain but not quite as well behaved yet!


Star is Jenny’s whippet and she enjoys typical whippet activities such as lazing around taking up a whole four seater sofa in between chasing squirrels!


Otis is Kate’s English pointer. Despite being all grown up now, he still likes to act like a puppy around the practice and can often be found raiding our bins!


Mila, aka Squeals, is Tracy’s French bulldog. Her favourite thing in the world is food but squeaky toys come in a close second!


Pixie and Darcey

Heidi’s Cocker spaniels are mother and daughter. Darcey likes to sleep and watch the world go by in the tractor on the farm whilst Pixie is full of beans and into everything.



Maisy is Heidi’s cheeky sports pony who loves anything to do with carrots, galloping and mud! She lives with some racehorses who she tries her best to keep up with around the fields.

Staff Pets
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