My Local Life: David White

This month’s Local Life features David White, the Clinical Director of the Royston Veterinary Centre as they celebrate their 10 years!

He qualified from Cambridge Vet School and has worked in many aspects of veterinary medicine including Farm Animal practice, Academia, Goverment, Industry and locums in many small animal practices. He had a prize winning herd of Charolais cattle and a flock of sheep for 20 years before coming to Royston!

Your business is ten years old this month – you must have some funny stories to tell…
I took an emergency call one afternoon and a rather distraught lady said her cat had broken its back and asked if I would see it straight away. Of course, this was a true emergency and she brought it to the surgery in double quick time. She came in with Kitty in a cardboard box; I could hear the cat calling out.
I opened the box and there was Kitty, a beautiful young tabby, watching me watching her. She was bright eyed and purring and didn’t look in distress. When I went to stoke Kitty she stood up. Very carefully I gently lifted her out of the box and as I stroked her some more she started crying out…
I discreetly explained to this very prim and proper lady that Kitty didn’t have a broken back but that she was in season and she was calling for a mate.

What was the last book you read? Would you recommend it?
Reading for me is so often work related so reading to relax has to be something quite different. The Flat White Economy by Douglas McWilliams describes how economic success, centred on East London, has swapped the City’s champagne and supercars lifestyle for bicycles and boho flats and has become the prototype for digital cities around the world including the rest of the UK.

What’s your favourite place to eat locally?
Eating out is a very social occasion for me and if there’s a gang of us the Rasa Sayang is ideal- good atmosphere and a varied menu suiting all tastes and budgets. When I want to impress my guest I take them to the Fox & Duck at Therfield – a traditional English pub in a traditional location. Ivan and his team are always welcoming and the food is always good – lunchtime or evening.

What do you enjoy most about your work?
I work within a successful team and seeing the team excel in their work and individuals excel in their careers makes me very proud. Also, meeting owners is a large part of my work and helping them do the very best for their animals is hugely satisfying.

What are your plans for holiday this year?
This year it’s our tenth year at Royston and organising the celebrations has meant that I’ve put holiday plans on hold. Also, Biscotti, my beloved Labrador, should be having a litter of puppies this summer and that will take a huge amount of time. I have had two very relaxing dog walking holidays in the Scilly Isles and would love to go back there. I have a painting of an Atlantic storm looking out over Shipman Head on Bryer – it is a wonderful spot of tranquillity.

What is the best advice you have ever been given? “Do It Now” by my uncle when I was eight years old. It is still good advice today!

Tell us about your perfect Sunday… Rise with the birds, get out for an early morning dog walk before the crowds, home for an exotic breakfast, a day of creative cooking and an evening meal with friends.

If you could have a chat with anyone, who would it be? I wonder at Nelson Mandela and all he achieved in the face of such adversity. Where did he find all that kindness and generosity of spirit yet remain resolute in his determination?

What’s top on your bucket list? Scuba diving off The Great Barrier Reef. I’ve been diving in many places – all wonderful but never in the Pacific and I’ve heard so much about the GBR.

What is your guilty pleasure? This was a tough choice. Is it chocolate (Cadburys Dairy Milk), or is it chocolate, (Terry’s Chocolate Orange) or is it chocolate (Green & Black’s Butterscotch) or failing those three teaspoons of Demerara sugar in my coffee.


We visited David at his surgery just as he was dealing with a cat which had been badly injured in a road traffic accident.
The poor creature was left with a very badly broken left leg. Her femur was broken into five pieces and, as a result, her left leg appeared much shorter than her right.

David undertook the tricky operation to put the cat’s leg back together. He used a pin down the middle of the bone and the three middle pieces are carefully held in place by six wire loops.

The second radiograph (X-ray to you and me) was taken after David had completed the surgery. The pin and wire loops can be clearly seen as they hold the cats bone in place.

Royston Veterinary Centre,
Newmarket Road,
Royston SG8 9GH
01763 242221