Our story (so far!)...
We were living in Scotland but had come down for our annual trip to Anglesey where Dewi grew up. On a dog walk one morning with Sam, our old Parsons Jack Russell Terrier, we walked past a little cottage with a beautiful garden and fantastic views of Snowdon and Yr Aran in the distance behind Caernarfon Castle. We booked a viewing and, on a whim, put in an offer on the house the same day. Talk about a heart decision! We had a practice in Glasgow, a house in Perth, and Dewi was working as a research scientist in Dundee at the time.
What were we up to buying a house on Anglesey with no jobs to go to?! Shortly afterwards, Dewi learned that his job was moving to Singapore, and I was approached by a veterinary couple keen to buy my practice in Glasgow. Fate? I like to think so. We did go on a week-long recce to Singapore but decided that too much sun (!!), no hills and no nice beaches, it wasn't really our thing. Our friends all thought we were mad moving to Anglesey rather than Singapore, but there you go - many of them have not been and seen how beautiful the place is. The Glasgow practice sold, our house sold in double quick time, and we had a removal van booked for October 2004. Neither of us yet had a job to go to, but then at the eleventh hour fantastic news came through that Dewi had won a Royal Society Relocation Fellowship giving him 12 months funding to work in the new cancer research institute at Bangor University.
We moved to Anglesey in October 2004, on a beautiful sunny day and sat drinking orange squash in the lovely garden. I decided to write to some local practices to see if they were thinking of retiring any time soon and whether they would consider selling their practice to an emigrated Scottish vet! At the time, Alan Finch wrote back saying, yes he was thinking of retirement and would we like to meet up. We did, and then I did a few days locumming at the practice to see what it was like. I thought that all the clients were lovely and that the nursing team were great. Just as I was about to make an offer, I discovered unexpectedly that I was expecting our third child! Plans had to be put on hold, and I spent a lovely 9 months getting to know Anglesey and the surrounding area, and going to Ti a Fi and Baby Gym with my other two children. I wrote to Alan again after our daughter was born, but alas he had someone else interested in the practice by that stage.
In June 2005 fate struck again, when Alan phoned to ask if I was still interested because the other party had pulled out. We concluded pretty quickly, and I became the proud owner of the practice on my birthday in October 2006.
So why did we name it the "Aran Vet Clinic"? Well, in Scotland I grew up with views of the Isle of Arran from my parents' home in Ayrshire, and here on Anglesey I have a view of Yr Aran from the garden (see the top of the page!). There was a connection, and it began with A, so put us near the front of the yellow pages listings too! It was a few years before Bumble and I found time to walk up Yr Aran, but it was a lovely walk when we did so from Rhyd Ddu one sunny spring morning.
We quickly outgrew the premises on Penmynydd Road, and so the search began for a new home for the practice. We looked at a plot on the industrial estate, which would have allowed us to build from scratch, but there were too many conditions attached and it was going to be far too expensive. Just as we were starting to wonder if a practice could be operated from a marquee, Geoff from GD Components rang me out of the blue. We had met at a Llangefni development plan strategy meeting in the Town Hall a few years previously and had shared contact details. Well, luckily for us, Geoff was relocating and had started building a row of 3 light industrial units on the Bryn Cefni Business Park behind Elim Peugeot. He asked if we would like the unit next to Paramaeth. Yes please!
We sat down with David Griffiths, the architect who was in charge of the development, and came up with a plan for the inside of the unit. I wanted the practice to have as few corridors as possible, plenty of natural light, and to be as non-industrial inside as possible. We came up with a design that really worked, and then appointed David Jones & Sons builders from Dwyran to do the work for us. If you have been on a guided tour of the practice, you will agree that they did a splendid job that we were delighted with. If you haven't had a guided tour, please ask - we often get comments that the practice is like a Tardis, especially once you go through to the back where all the operations, x-rays, dentals and other procedures take place.
Rusty, our architect's dog, officially opened the practice and we quickly settled into life in the new premises. We have been in the new building a few years now, and we can't believe the time has passed so quickly. We've continued to invest in lots of new equipment and staff training, to make sure we can look after your pet in the best possible way. We have launched our very own Healthy Pet Club to make preventative healthcare as easy as possible, we have free nursing appointments for dental checks, puppy and kitten checks, weight clinics, rabbit and guinea pig health checks and much more. The whole team is committed to helping keep your family pet as healthy as possible - we all have pets ourselves, and we do the job because we love animals and the love they give back. Come and see our vet practice in Llangefni and be involved in part of who we are - Anglesey and North Wales's caring, local independent pet practice.
A note about our photographs
Almost all the images you see on this site have been taken by us. We would like to thank all of our kind clients who have generously agreed to let us photograph (or at least try to photograph!) their pets.