A veterinary surgeon working in Huntingdon has bid farewell to the practice after almost 45 years of service.

David Fennell took up work at The Cromwell Veterinary Group in 1972, after relocating from Liverpool where he studied at university.

Still a mixed practice at this point, the surgery dealt with farm as well as domestic animals, and by 1975, at just 24-years-old, David became a partner in the business.

Now re-named Hall, Thurley, Soldan & Fennell, David split his time between the Huntingdon site and helping to open its sister base in Ramsey in 1989, before also founding an emergency service for pets in the county.

A spokesman for the surgery said: "With his work at Cromwell's and the local community, Mr Fen - as he's affectionately known - is very well-known and we still get people come into the surgery and give us snippets of information of 'Halls' and their visits to the surgery to see Mr Fen. Or indeed from his farm visits."

This work not only earned him a senior director position in 1999, but also the reputation for carrying through values put down by those before him - something which will now be headed up by the remaining directors.

In a joint statement, they said: "After nearly 45 years of committed service, the directors at Cromwell Vets, Joseph Munoz, Nigel Belgrove and Rachael Day would like to wish David a long, healthy and fruitful retirement which is richly deserved.

"We would like to express our gratitude to him for being such an inspiring colleague and friend, who has without doubt been instrumental in making Cromwell Vets what it is today. Thank you David."