Simon Innes, CVS Group plc CEO speaking at CVS Conference 2018

CVS Conference supporting the theme of Be MORE

6th November 2018

CVS Group plc held its 2018 annual conference on Friday 2nd and Saturday 3rd November with the theme “Be MORE” with over 770 delegates from across the group.

The conference promise to delegates was to deliver an engaging programme supporting delegates to be M.O.R.E;

  • Mindful of how your thoughts and emotions influence your day.
  • Open to new ideas and ways of doing things.
  • Responsible and confident to lead.
  • Empowered to make effective decisions.

Delegates listened to group and performance updates and the company five year strategy as well as attending a programme of extensive continuing professional development over two days which included clinical, operational and leadership work streams supporting the M.O.R.E theme.

The conference, which included the CVS 2018 Awards Dinner, had 17 awards celebrating success and nominated by colleagues across the group. TV celebrity James Nesbitt hosted the Awards Ceremony adding humour and energy to the awards reflecting their importance. He stayed long after the awards as hundreds of CVS colleagues patiently queued for photos.

Simon Innes, Chief Executive Officer commented: “The CVS Conference has grown to its largest to date with 770 delegates with an exceptional programme of CPD. I was proud to see our CVS Award winners celebrated at or Gala dinner with 17 Awards nominated from around the company. Our conference continues to grow in line with the company and I’m pleased to announce that in 2019 we will move to the International Convention Centre (ICC) in Birmingham to accommodate our growing size and reflect the importance of delivering the CPD programme to our colleagues in a venue with a great amphitheatre location.”



CVS Awards winners 2018

 CVS Award winners

Crematorium Employee of the Year

Jonathan Bell, TPC Larkhall

He only joined in 2017 but has made such a huge impact already, showing excellent leadership skills in his new post. Jonathan was described as “highly motivated to succeed” and has rapidly been promoted to Supervisor. Leading his new team well, he motivates others and always thinks ahead. He is well respected by both peers and management.

Crematorium of the Year

TPC Durham

TPC Durham were recognised not only for their financial performance in the last year, but also for their outstanding commitment to customer service.

Practice of the Year

Bracken Veterinary Centre

Bracken has a motto is “Don’t forget to be fabulous” and they really are, they’ve tried very hard to integrate into the local community, and are very involved in a local rescue centre DBARC, they’ve received fantastic reviews for their work. “I would recommend them to anyone looking for 1st class care for their pet” being just one citation.

Clinical Director of the Year

Gemma Newbold, Buttercross Veterinary Centre

One of Gemma’s citations reads, “She has taken one of the busiest practices in the area from huge under performance to one of the most successful in the region and much of the country. She is also a brilliant mentor and an excellent Vet with a cliental who love her”. She puts in lots of extra hours to keep us going as well as we do, without complaint.”

Veterinary Surgeon of the Year

Joey Kapff, Nine Mile Veterinary Hospital

Her friends and colleagues said of her, “Joey has excelled in the past year going from strength to strength and she constantly strives for clinical excellence. She is also integral in teaching both student nurses and now Surrey IMR students. I hope she never leaves!” Joey has always been a big advocate for health and wellbeing and is a welcome voice of experience on the MiVoice committee.

Laboratory Employee of the Year

Kat James, Finn Pathologists

Kat with her team provides outstanding support for her clients, “nothing is ever too much for Kat”.  It’s been said that nothing is ever too much for Kat and colleagues noted the fact that she provides excellent help no matter how daft or small an issue may be.

Laboratory Technician of the year

Kate Lenthall, Axiom

Katie’s workers and friends at Axiom have said Kate learns really fast and strives to provide high quality results every time she comes to work. Kate couldn’t make it to the CVS Awards Dinner so general manager at Axiom, Dan Sherry collected the award on her behalf.

New Graduate of the Year

Emily Wilkes, Seymour Veterinary Hospital

One of Emily’s citation reads, “Emily has been an outstanding graduate in all respects. Her surgical skills, people management, client handling and above all her results are well above the expected outcomes. Her care for clients has been wonderful and we are grateful she works for us.” Those who work with Emily say her customer care skills are second to none, and she is clearly building herself her own client base due to her fabulous empathy.

Veterinary Nurse of the Year

Amanda Hunter, The Village Animal Hospital

Amanda’s supporters said of her work: “She is always very positive, hard-working and an amazing clinical coach to the SVN’s. She works incredibly hard and I am always learning from her. She is the best Veterinary Nurse that I have had the pleasure of working with.” Amanda has been with the Village Animal Hospital team for nine years, and is an essential member of the team.

Animed Direct, Employee of the year

Rosie Bloomfield

Rosie’s many citations read, “Rosie goes above and beyond with patience and perseverance, both with new system tasks and people alike. Her dedication to getting things right for us and the customer are evident and I’d love her to get the recognition she deserves. Rosie gives everything 101% to an exemplary standard and always has the wider picture to work in mind.  She’s committed in ways beyond her requirements and willing to help anyone in any situation.  But above all, she is positive, cheery, a joy to work with and holds the respect of everyone at Animed Direct”.

Patient Care Assistant of the Year

Joeleen Plaxton, Cromlyn House Veterinary Practice

Joeleen is nominated because in the words of her peers, “She is incredibly kind and caring to both patients and staff. She has taken over managing our ordering and budget care recently, she communicates well with both clinical director and vets and nurses about what stock is needed, including those conversations of ‘do you really need that’!  Among all her other tasks she has even found time to take in several stray exotic pets and responsibly re-home them.”

Practice Manager of the Year

Abigail Godfrey, Pet Doctors Woking Hub

Abigail’s citation refers to the fact that Abby has made such a huge difference in such a short time – she has bought enthusiasm, motivation and above all hope, that we could be better than we are. All her colleagues are incredibly fonds of Abby, citing the fact that she’s impacted every person across three practices in a positive way.

Receptionist of the Year

Amanda Carter, Dovecote Veterinary Hospital

Amanda has been described as “someone who always has a smile on her face, great with clients and patients and is a tireless fundraiser”. At the Dovecote Veterinary Hospital, Mandy is the first person the clients meet and she never fails to make them feel welcome and at home with just the right amount of humour and professionalism.

Support Service Team of the Year

Healthy Pet Club

The Healthy Pet Club launched in 2010 and now has over 370,000 members. The team handles around 560 calls per day, not only providing a five star service to The Healthy Pet Club members but also assisting practices through all aspects of the scheme.  The Team consistently perform with passion, professionalism, and enthusiasm; living and breathing the Healthy Pet Club and Horse Health Programme. Their dedication has ensured that many callers intent on cancelling stay with the scheme.

The Brian Pound Award for Clinical Excellence

Ben Walton, Chestergates

Ben is clearly committed to clinical excellence with contributions to numerous clinical publications, he is also part of the Clinical Governance Committee at Chestergates and Cranmore, also helping to recruit and support students on their learning journey. Ben has used carefully planned research to design, develop and trial new orthopaedic implants which have improved outcomes in patients. Simultaneously, he has mentored several younger colleagues allowing them to deliver tangible clinical research results to improve veterinary care in CVS.

CVS Unsung Hero of the Year 2018

Edward Knowles, Bell Equine

Edd’s contribution to the CVS Equine Group has been wide ranging including working in partnership with Axiom to develop their equine service, supporting the equine CAC and developing an equine CPD programme. His citations include, “He is has embraced change within Bell Equine and became an advocate for the new direction, focussing on the positive. Edd is always bright and cheerful, no matter what the circumstances, very refreshing for those that have the pleasure to work with him.”

The Living our Values Every Day Award or L.O.V.E Awards

Julia Metcalf, Highcroft Veterinary Group

Her colleagues have described as “the heart of the group, really no task is too much for Julia who is one of the most genuine people I know”.  “You will not find a colleague who does not adore her and everything she stands for”.