THIS week’s trader of the week goes to an equine practice that recently expanded its team despite the setbacks brought by Covid-19.

At Durham Equine Practice, staff have gone above and beyond to give horses much-needed treatment and care, making animal welfare their top priority.

The clinic, based at Durham Gate in Spennymoor, looks after 15,000 of the North East’s horses, ponies and donkeys, and has recently welcomed a new clinical director at the helm and two new additions to the team.

James Emson, an experienced equine vet who has been working at the practice as a locum for three years, has taken the position of clinical director and will lead a team of five vets.

For many years, the vet ran his own practice, which joined forces with Durham Equine in 2017.

He said: “We get a lot of pleasure out of supporting our customers in terms of their horse’s welfare, and I think we have a good team of people who work for the practice, including a number of support staff and five vets.

“We show really good teamwork, and everyone gets on well together. I think when we have our late nights and our difficult days, there’s always people around to support each other to keep everyone sane, and I think that makes it a good place to work.

“We’re expected to provide a 24 hour service, seven days a week, and you get difficult cases, for example this morning [February 9] I went out to a horse whose leg had fractured in the night.

“It’s leg was just snapped in half and the horse was obviously in a tremendous amount of pain, and its up to us to get there as quick as we can.

“Not only do we have to deal with Coronavirus, but also school closures, and the recent weather conditions, all of which add to making our job that little bit more challenging and interesting.

“You’re dealing with an emotionally charged situation, and you can also be very tired and stressed with the virus and home schooling as well.

“I think we get through it by being a strong team – if you see somebody struggling, you help, and I think our practice is particularly good at looking after each other, from our own team to our customers.”

The Northern Echo understands many firms are operating under challenging circumstances, but we hope to use Trader of the Week to support local businesses. To see your business featured, or to nominate a business, email