Ethics and Welfare Committee | BEVA
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Ethics & Welfare Committee

Welcome to the Ethics and Welfare committee. We focus our efforts on all topics relating to equine welfare and are currently working on raising awareness to the issues of Equine Obesity. We have previously been involved with the National Equine Health and Welfare Strategy, hot branding, thermocautery, livery yard licensing proposals and the Riding Establishments committee.

News from the Committee

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Meet the Committee
Imogen Burrows
Committee Chair
Imogen Burrows
Committee Chair
Imogen graduated from the RVC, London in 2000 and was awarded the RCVS Certificate in Equine Medicine and Advanced Practitioner status in 2014. She works in first opinion equine practice and mentors new graduates as a VetGDP advisor; she has also been an RVN clinical coach. She is responsible for overseeing veterinary undergraduate rotations in the clinic and examines at the University of Surrey. Imogen is a BEVA council member, sitting on the Education Committee and is current Chair of the Ethics and Welfare Committee. She is passionate about education, improving standards of clinical care and welfare.
Kate Blakeman
Kate Blakeman
Kate has worked in equine practice for over 15 years both in the UK and multiple stud seasons in Australia. She joined council in 2020 determined to represent the ambulatory equine vet. Her husband is a farm vet and they have young children. Kate has been involved the continue development of the leg up scheme for new graduates. She is expanding the coaching scheme to help support other BEVA members who might require specific coaching and support- especially following return to work.
Dave Rendle
Dave Rendle
Following graduation from The University of Bristol in 2001, David worked in farm animal and equine practice in Somerset before and completing an internship at Liphook Equine Hospital. A 3-year Horserace Betting Levy Board residency at The University of Glasgow and Liphook Equine Hospital enabled him to train as a specialist in equine internal medicine and to gain a masters by research into equine asthma and an RCVS certificate in equine medicine. David spent a number of years at Liphook Equine Hospital and had spells at The Royal Veterinary College and Charles Sturt University in Australia before moving to Rainbow Equine Hospital in Yorkshire where he became a director. David returned to his Westcountry roots in 2020 and now works as an independent equine medicine and therapeutics consultant.
Alison Talbot
Alison Talbot
Sophie Eaden
Sophie Eaden
Sophie has spent the majority of her career in ambulatory practice in Devon and has always had a keen interest in communication and mentoring junior colleagues. Developing myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME/chronic fatigue syndrome) in 2020 added a new set of challenges to work in equine practice. Being forced to work part-time, Sophie enrolled on a coaching diploma; this lead to accepting a teaching position at Surrey Vet School. Having been elected on to BEVA council in 2022, Sophie is passionate about supporting the well-being of equine vets and improving equality, diversity and inclusion within the equine profession
Neil Townsend
Neil Townsend
Neil graduated from Bristol University in 2004 and after a brief period in mixed practice joined Liverpool University as an intern, followed by a surgery residency at Edinburgh University. He re-joined Liverpool University in 2010 before joining Three Counties Equine Hospital in 2015. He holds European Diplomas in both Equine Surgery and Equine Dentistry. In May 2023 he set up his own Equine Dentistry and Surgery business. Neil was co-opted onto the Allied Professionals Committee of BEVA Council in from 2013 - 2015 before being elected in 2016. He has served on the Allied Professionals committee and served and been chairperson of the Allied Professionals and Careers committees. He is currently on Allied Professionals, Careers and Ethics and Welfare committees. He became a Trustee of the Association in 2018.
Helen Bickerton
Helen Bickerton
Helen graduated from the University of Bristol in 2008, spent two years as an intern at NEH and has been in ambulatory first opinion equine practice ever since. She has a particular interest in lameness, sports medicine and vettings and completed a certificate in equine orthopaedic surgery in 2015. She is an FEI permitted treating vet and was team vet for the British team at the CCI3*-S European Cup eventing championships in 2017 and 2019. Helen is currently a clinical director at Valley Equine Hospital in Lambourn. Outside work Helen is kept busy with her two young daughters and their ponies.