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About Penbode Equine

Our equine specialised vets


David Rowlands

David Rowlands BVSc Cert EM(Stud Med) MRCVS
David comes from a competitive riding and horse breeding background in Cornwall. He graduated from Liverpool University in 1997 and has worked at equine referral hospitals in Ireland, New Zealand and Rossdales in Newmarket, UK. In 2005 he returned to the West Country to establish Penbode Equine as a specialised department within Penbode Vets. He holds the RCVS certificate in equine stud medicine and is part of the British Equestrian Federation (BEF) veterinary support team. He has officiated at many international events including Burghley Horse Trials and the London 2012 Olympics. He is an FEI Veterinary Delegate for eventing. His areas of specialisation include stud and sport horse medicine, dentistry and pre-purchase examinations. When work permits he enjoys exercising point-to-pointers and training for triathlons.

Gemma Hearn

Gemma Stokes BVSc GPCert(EqP) MRCVS
Gemma graduated from Liverpool University in 2004 and after a year in mixed practice in Devon joined Penbode Equine in August 2005. She has a keen interest in lameness investigation, medicine and surgery. She has also received further training in saddle fitting. Gemma completed a certificate in general equine practice in 2010. She is a keen rider and committee member of the Holsworthy and District Riding Club. Gemma competes locally on her horse Shelly.

Hermione Finch

Hermione Finch BSc (Hons) BVM&S MRCVS
Hermione graduated from Edinburgh University in 2012, having included a research scholarship in equine stud medicine at Colarado State University, USA, and joined Penbode Equine during the same year. Hermione has represented East Cornwall Pony Club at area competitions and the National Show-jumping finals at Hickstead, and more recently concentrated on show-jumping and unaffiliated dressage.

Nathalie van Heesewijk

Nathalie van Heesewijk BVSc (Hons) MRCVS Nathalie graduated from Bristol University in 2012, having been awarded the Rossdales Equine Studies Prize. After spending a few months working in Morocco, she was appointed as hospital intern in a busy equine referral hospital based in the home counties. Nathalie has a keen interest in medicine and in investigation of poor performance, and is currently studying towards her certificate in equine medicine. She enjoys any horse related activities and is always keen to try out new disciplines.




Ashley Stewart Ashley Stewart BVetMed MRCVS

Ashley graduated from the Royal Veterinary College in July 2012. He spent time with us throughout the course of his training. He has a keen interest in smallholder medicine but also enjoys challenging medical cases. A lifelong Watford fan Ashley is a keen footballer, but may also be found playing golf and cycling in his spare time.




Mark Shepherd

Mark Shepherd BVetMed MRCVS
Mark is an extremely experienced vet who is specialising in equine emergency care. We are very pleased to have him as part of our 24 hour, 7 days a week emergency cover team.




Our regular consultants include:


Ollie Crowe BVSc Cert ES(Orth) Dip ECVS MRCVS

Ollie Crowe is a specialist in surgery and lameness.

Richard Hepburn BVSc Cert EM(Int Med) Dip ACVIM MRCVS

Richard Hepburn specialises in internal medicine cases with particular interest in Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome (EGUS).

Horse Amber Clutton-Brock MA Vet MB MRCVS

Amber Clutton-Brock specialises in embryo transfer.

Mark Banks BVSc Cert V Ophthal MRCVS

Mark Banks specialises in veterinary ophthalmology.

Claire Davies BVSc Vet MFHom MRCVS

Claire Davies specialises in holistic vet skills, including homeopathy, acupuncture and herbal medicine.

Our equine receptionists

Karen Easterbrook

Karen Easterbrook
Karen has many years of horse experience. Her breadth of knowledge extends across all disciplines and she has evented at pre-novice level.


Tasha Parkes

Tasha Parkes
Tasha is interested in all things equine, especially breaking and schooling her own young horses. Tasha is keen to help keep your horse healthy and active.

Get in touch









Horse vets serving Holsworthy, Okehampton, Tavistock, Launceston, Bude / Stratton, Camelford / Bodmin and Bradworthy British Equestrian Federation ABVA The Pony Club FEI Duchy College XL Equine Holsworthy Riding Club Safer Horse Rescues Ivybridge Equestrian Ivybridge Equestrian