Penny notches up 30 years at vets

Celebrating 30 years' service: Picture submittedL-R: Carole Clarke, Penny Jackson-Smith, David Clar

Celebrating 30 years' service: Picture submittedL-R: Carole Clarke, Penny Jackson-Smith, David Clarke - Credit: Archant

The old saying 'a job for life' could well apply to Penny Jackson-Smith, who is celebrating 30 years at a veterinary practice.

The nursing manager at Mill House Vets in Tennyson Avenue, King's Lynn, has helped treat hundreds, if not thousands, of animals since 1986.

But she still remembers the first dog, Lucy, she treated at the weight loss clinic she set up. She also has fond memories of starting up a puppy socialising class.

She joined the business as a student nurse, after spending eight months at a practice in Hounslow, where she had relatives.

Then known as King Street Vets, Mrs Jackson-Smith has warm memories of being on call with just one other duty nurse back in 1986.

Her first day at work was memorable, as she became involved with two emergencies – a dog needing chest drainage after being involved in a road accident and a bloated Old English sheepdog that needed emergency surgery.

She said: 'It's been amazing to see how veterinary medicines have progressed in that time.

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'When I left school I desperately wanted to do veterinary nursing. The directors of the practice, Carole and David Clarke, took me on in 1986, just two years after they had started the practice. They are still here now.'

The married 48-year-old, who lives in West Winch, has no plans to quit just yet, and added: 'I think they are stuck with me.'

Known as the 'mad chicken lady' , she has several chickens at home plus a disabled cat called Rosie and a maroon bellied conure bird, Charlie.

Qualifying in 1987, she became a senior nurse in 1989, then nursing manager in 2012.

In recognition of her service, she was presented with a bouquet of flowers, a bottle of champagne and a book full of photographic memories with greetings from past and present staff.

Are you celebrating many years' service where you work? Email david.bale2@archant.co.uk

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