Rye Team

Richard Williams - BVetMed, MRCVS - Senior Veterinary Surgeon 
With deep familial ties in the Rye area, Richard originally came to the Practice even before his qualification which was in 1983.
Richard worked in several practices including a period in specialist equine work all over the world before returning to his roots and joining the Practice in 1989.

Richard quickly became a director, and has continued to devote all his efforts to the development of the Practice. Richard has been at the heart of the development of the Practice for many years.  In 2001 he led the way on the development of Kingsnorth Surgery and since then was integral to the joining of forces with Milbourn Equine and the development of our clinic in Sevington.  Richard continues to enjoy most of all contact with his clients and patients alike. Richard lives locally with his wife and four children.  In his spare time he enjoys swimming and sailing along with lifelong interests in architecture and photography.


James Mursell - BVM BVS MRCVS - Veterinary Surgeon
James joined the practice in August 2017 after qualifying as a veterinary surgeon at Nottingham University. James is very active enjoying rugby, riding and cycling in his spare time.  He has a love of African wildlife and one of his ambitions is to become involved with African wildlife both from a veterinary and conservation point of view.






Sarah Startup - Group Practice Manager
Sarah has worked in veterinary practice since 1989 as a Receptionist.  Sarah joined our Kingsnorth branch when it was opened in Summer 2001, becoming Branch Manager in 2007 and Group Practice Manager of Cinque Ports Vets & Milbourn Equine in 2016.  She is assisted in her office by Izzy her rescue terrier.





Mel Stern – Branch Manager
Mel joined our Practice in 2007 taking overall responsibility for our administration and accounts at our Rye branch drawing on her experience in management and administration from previous careers. During her spare time she enjoys all aspects of country life with Riley, her English pointer and Buddy the gypsy cob.



Tara Evans - GradDip VN RVN - Head Veterinary Nurse, Pet Health Counsellor
Tara joined Cinque Ports in 2003 where she completed her veterinary nurse training and qualified in 2006.  She became head nurse in 2008 and went on to complete her assessor training to aid the future training of student veterinary nurses within practice.  She has a keen interest in nutrition, nurse clinics and caring for needy neonates. Tara gained her Royal Canin Pet Health Counsellor qualification in 2010 enabling her to advise on a wide range of beneficial healthcare issues. Her companions at home include three cats and a bearded dragon.

Alex Brotherston -RVN - Veterinary Nurse

Alex has rejoined the practice in April 2017 at Rye branch where she originally trained to become a veterinary nurse.  Alex is kept very busy with her lovely little girl Amelia who is into everything, as well as her three cats.






Amy Tompsett - RVN - Veterinary Nurse 

Amy qualified as a nurse in 2010, joining Cinque Ports Vets in 2016, working at our Rye and Tenterden branches. Amy enjoys all aspects of veterinary nursing but is particularly interested in feline nursing and behaviour and running nursing clinics. At home, Amy is kept busy with her young daughter and has two rescue cats, Maggie and Betty.




Jenny Woodward- RVN-Veterinary Nurse

Jenny joined the practice in June 2017 after having recently moved back to Hastings after living in Wales for the last one and a half years. She has 3 dogs and 2 cats.  In her spare time she is learning to ride her motorbike.





Issy Le Pla - Trainee Veterinary Nurse
Issy first joined Cinque Ports Vets in October 2014 at our Hawkhurst branch for work experience.  In July 2015 she transferred to our Rye branch as Auxillary Nursing Assistant with the aim of training  to become a fully qualified veterinary nurse.  Outside of work Issy is an accomplished Western rider successfully competing on her horse Sushi, and representing Britain in America and Europe.  One of her great achievements has been to win an FEI bronze medal.  Aside from riding Issy enjoys spending time with her Labrador, Hallie.



Jan Weightman - Receptionist
Jan joined the team at Cinque Ports in 1997 after a career in the N.H.S. and Civil Service.  She has always said it was an excellent move and enjoys her work enormously.  Jan shares her home with two horses and two cats.  Jan rides as much as possible and regularly takes part in local riding events.  Her other hobbies include ballroom dancing and Le Rock!



Bernardine Fiddimore - Receptionist

Berni first worked for the Practice in 1979 where she fulfilled a number of roles before moving onto a career in retail management. After the birth of her daughter she has returned to the Practice as a general assistant and receptionist, bringing a wealth of experience with animals gained at her family's boarding kennels and cattery business. Berni has extensive management and marketing skills with which she helps to promote the Practice. Outside of work Berni is interested in public affairs and is very active on the Rye Town Council. In May 2014 Berni was inaugurated as the Right Worshipful Mayor of Rye.



Rebecca Rhodes - Head Receptionist
Rebecca joined the Rye team in July 2015.  During her spare time Rebecca enjoys creating, reading, gardening and looking after her dog, Peggy and cat, Mr Tumnus.





 Catherine Oakley- Nursing/Reception Assistant

Catherine joined us in September 2015 as a Reception/Nursing Assistant. She previously worked for a number of years at a local rehoming centre as an animal welfare assistant and dog behaviourist. Catherine has owned dogs from Wolfhounds to Chihuahuas and currently owns a Chinese Crested, Chihuahua and Precious, her 14 year old Pug. Catherine also keeps reptiles, a rabbit, guinea pig and a skinny pig, all of whom keep her very busy!




Paula Pearce - Receptionist

Paula joined us in 2017 having previously worked at the Blue Cross until its closure in 2016. In her spare time Paula enjoys walking, particularly the British coastal paths. She especially likes to take her daughter's Labrador along with her on these walks.  In the past Paula has bred Cocker Spaniels.



Cindy Bridges - Receptionist

Cindy joined our team at Rye in 2017.  Cindy has previously gained experience in retail and office environments.  She has also owned and worked with horses, training to BHS AI level and passing her BHS Stage 2 exam.  In her spare time, Cindy enjoys yoga and sup boarding and has a blue belt in Brazilian Jui Jitsu.  She also has a dog and two cats.




 Pat Benn - Receptionist

Having joined us in 1991, Pat is a highly experienced veterinary receptionist.  In 2015 she left the practice to go travelling including driving across Australia in a Camper Van.  On her return to the UK Pat re-joined our reception team providing the occasional holiday cover. Her interests include music festivals, camping and travelling.

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