About us

Our practice has always been a family affair, run by the Partners and their wives

About-UsOur practice has an extensive history, having not only seen several business partners but also many name changes over the years!

It was first established by Reginald ‘Reggie’ Smythe in 1966, and run as a one-man band until 1968. At this time he was joined by local vet Robin Sopp, and the practice accordingly became known as Smythe & Sopp.

In 1972 another partner joined the team – Patrick Fry – and the business extended its name to Smythe, Sopp & Fry.

However, it was not just the management team that was expanding. The client base was too, and the business was quickly extended to two premises: a surgery at Green Lane in Redruth and one in British Road in St Agnes.

Robin retired in 1985 to do voluntary veterinary work in Bangladesh for three years before returning to become a vet for the Ministry of Agriculture. He still lives locally – we last saw him when he attended Geoff’s retirement party.

A few years later the management team underwent a couple of alterations, eventually becoming Fry, Usher and Edwards by the end of 1988 following the addition of Geoffrey Usher and Graham Edwards (in 1982 and 1988 respectively).

history3Our first Camborne location was originally Patrick Fry’s garage, which he converted into a waiting area and small consulting room in 1981, when the St Agnes premises closed. It later moved to its current premises in Trevithick Road in 1990.

Similarly, the Redruth surgery had moved from Green Lane to its present location on Drump Road in early 1988, just a couple of years earlier. On the weekend of the big move the entire staff team came in to help, as well as a large number of clients!

Patrick retired in 1999 (prompting the practice to change to Usher & Edwards) but still lives in Cornwall and keeps in touch with the current team.

Graham and his wife Pauline (who was also the Practice Manager) retired in 2007 and are both keeping well thanks to the Spanish sunshine, mountain air and red wine!

history1In 2010 our current owners, husband-and-wife team Zoe and Ben Gilbert-Pocock, became partners in the practice that was by then known as The Veterinary Centre. They had been a part of the team since 2008 after returning to Cornwall following a short spell working away in Eastbourne. Geoff and his wife Anne, who was the Practice Manager, both retired in 2014 leaving Zoe and Ben at the helm of the business. Geoff and Anne still live in the area but are appreciating the lack of paperwork, occasionally popping in to remind us how much they are enjoying retirement!

Liverpool graduates Zoe and Ben were both brought up in farming families, surrounded by a variety of animals including dogs, cats, calves and lambs as well as – in Zoe’s case – rabbits, rats, guinea pigs and hamsters. Both knew from an early age that they wanted to be vets so that they could make their careers caring for animals.

history2Zoe and Ben joined the practice after responding to veterinary assistant job postings that were released while they were on honeymoon. They remember applying for the positions on Zoe’s birthday, despite being on a different continent at the time!

They were both attracted by the practice’s strong position in the community, as well as its large loyal client base, and envisioned great future potential for the business. Together Zoe and Ben continue to take their team and the practice from strength to strength. Today the practice is known as Monument Vets, after Bassett Monument on Carn Brea. The new name was decided by our vet Alex, and one of our clients Mr Taylor, after we ran a competition to find the new name for the practice.

Zoe, Ben and the whole team look forward to meeting you and your pet soon, and welcoming you to the wider family of their family-run practice.

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