Our team

Our vets are committed equine professionals who demonstrate excellent customer service and patient care. All our staff have backgrounds in horses and many ride and are actively part of the local equine community.

Their combined experience and specialist qualifications confirm the outstanding quality of our clinical team and the Leahurst equine practice keenly ensures that we foster clinical progression and excellence in all our employees.


L‌uke Edwards 

Lecturer in Equine Clinical Skills





 Luke qualified from the University of Bristol in 1996, with the distinction of being the only member of the year not to appear on the BBC TV series “Vets School”. After qualifying he worked in mixed practice in Nottinghamshire and Farm and Equine Practice in Devon, before spending twelve years working in a large Equine Practice on the Shropshire/Welsh borders.He has particular interests in colic, laminitis and equine welfare, but is quite happy to deal with any area of equine veterinary work. Luke is an Advanced Practitioner in Equine Practice and holds a Certificate of Advanced Veterinary Practice in Equine Soft Tissue Surgery. In the past Luke has owned and bred his own horses (and other livestock).


Joanne Ireland

Lecturer in Equine Practice

Jo Ireland






 After graduating from the University of Glasgow in 2000, Jo worked in equine first opinion practice, with additional time spent working in a large equine referral hospital in Sweden and as a volunteer veterinary surgeon in The Gambia for the Gambia Horse and Donkey Trust. ‌In 2010, Jo obtained the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons Certificate in Advanced Veterinary Practice (Equine Medicine – Internal) and completed her PhD in equine geriatric health and welfare at the University of Liverpool in 2011.

In October 2010, Jo joined the Epidemiology and Disease Surveillance group at the Animal Health Trust where her role involved disease surveillance and leading a nationwide vaccine trial for Equine Grass Sickness. ‌In January 2017, Jo returned to Leahurst, where her role is split between equine first opinion practice and research. Jo’s main research interests are equine epidemiology and internal medicine, particularly geriatric medicine, endocrine disorders, endocrinopathic laminitis and lower respiratory tract disease. She is a member of the British Equine Veterinary Association and the Society for Veterinary Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine. Jo is also a member of the Equine Veterinary Journal Study Design and Data Analysis Board and has published over 40 original research articles.  


Helen Braid

Lecturer in Equine Practice

Helen Braid Small





 Helen graduated from the Royal Veterinary College in 2013, having undertaken a Bachelor's degree in Microbiology & Zoology beforehand at the University of Liverpool. Helen is from Stockport originally and is very glad to be back in the North West! She previously worked at an equine practice in Lincolnshire before joining Leahurst Equine Practice in February 2018.

Helen has a Certificate of Advanced Veterinary Practice and has interests in equine medicine, neurology and laminitis. She is currently studying for a Master's degree alongside her daily work. Outside of work, Helen obtained her 2nd Dan black belt in Japanese Ju-jitsu in June 2018 and is an assistant chief instructor at her club, where she coaches on most Saturdays. She also enjoys swimming, weight training and doting on her naughty cat, Spartacus.


Ben Curnow

Resident in Equine Practice






 Ben graduated from Bristol University in July 2014 and worked in a large animal practice in Sheffield, dealing with horses, donkeys, cattle, pigs, and even alpacas! He then moved to a busy equine hospital in Kent to complete a year long internship, before joining Leahurst Equine Practice in 2016. Since moving to the Wirral, Ben has enjoyed meeting all of the clients and their horses, as well as exploring the beaches with his whippet sidekick, Lemon. Ben has a Certificate of Advanced Veterinary Practice in Equine Practice and his areas of interest include dermatology and ophthalmology.


Office Staff

Siobhan Whitehead


Siobhan Whitehead





 Siobhan has been around horses all her life. She is also a qualified BHSAI and taught at Foxes riding school for 4 years. Siobhan then took time out to travel the world and work in various equine jobs for 2 years before embarking on her time here at Leahurst. Originally part of the yard team at the hospital Siobhan then moved into the practice office after 10 years and is integral to our practice team. Siobhan continues to enjoy travelling as well as walking and reading.