A VETERAN vet has said he excited about the future after launching a new practice in a revamped barn.

Robert Lees has been a vet for more than 40 years but says he isn't ready to hang up his hat yet.

He has just launched a brand new clinic in the town - Linkswood Veterinary Centre which is based at Catley Cross.

The idea came to Robert and his wife Avril less than a year ago but the centre opened on November 1.

The centre is based in a completely revamped barn at Robert's home with Robert already operating a successful stud and RSPCA service.

Already the centre has attracted young and hungry staff with Robert being joined by George Lightfoot, who qualified as a vet at Cambridge University along with four veterinary nurses.

So far, the vet has been a big success and Robert is excited for the next step in his life as a vet, ending thoughts about retirement.

He said: "I realised that I was not ready to retire, and had the desire to start a new adventure, particularly as so many young vets and nurses were keen to join us, with the same enthusiasm and belief that a veterinary surgery ‘should a vocation rather than a business’.

“I started working at Taylor & Hogger, in Sudbury in 1979 and became a partner there with Eric Taylor in 1984 and I then in 1990 set up the practice at Catley Cross until last year.

“We live on-site and had the space to open a centre here. We are based just 5 minutes’ drive from Halstead and are well known in the local community and therefore wanted to continue the contact and relationship with all those clients I have so enjoyed seeing over the years.

“It has exceeded our expectations with the number of clients and pets being registered with us, but also the amount of goodwill and positive feedback.

“We are through and through an independent practice, with independent values. This means we do not have to be dictated by Corporate rules and restrictions.

“We see all companion animals and small pets, and each and every one of them is as important as the other.”