In memory of Angharad Simlett-Moss

In memory of Angharad Simlett-Moss

Angharad Simlett-Moss BVSc, CertAVP(GSAS), PgCertVPS, MRCVS

RCVS Advanced Practitioner in Small Animal Surgery

Angharad died suddenly in July 2020, three weeks after her 34th birthday. At the time she had many plans – both veterinary and personal – for the future. To honour and celebrate her life and achievements the Angharad Simlett-Moss Volunteering Bursary, funded by her family and hosted and administered by WVS, is founded to reflect Angharad’s passion for continual veterinary learning and good teaching.

It was Angharad’s dream to graduate as a vet, which she achieved in 2009 after five years of study at the University of Bristol. She then went straight into first-opinion practice in Bristol. She had a fruitful time working at the same practice for several years, honing her skills and relishing the many challenges of day-to-day veterinary work while becoming particularly interested in surgical cases. She then moved to London and her experience in several different private practices and charities there cemented her burgeoning passion for small animal surgery, and so she looked for opportunities to undertake advanced training.

© Joyce Simlett-Moss 2023

Opportunity came in the northwest, where she had grown up. She secured a highly competitive rotating internship, followed later by a specialist internship in surgery. After completing these she embarked upon a prestigious Residency in Small Animal Surgery. She completed the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons’ Certificate in Advanced Veterinary Practice (General Small Animal Surgery) and gained the status of Advanced Practitioner – her focus being on the surgery that had always enthralled her: soft tissue surgery. With colleagues she authored several published papers, two of which were published posthumously with her co-authors driving publication. Her co-authors in the first of these (Tanis et al.) generously dedicated the work to her memory, and those in the second paper (Simlett-Moss et al.) paid tribute to her ‘great diligence and care with her patients’.* Her talent as a succinct, analytical, and clear writer was in demand for the editing of medical papers.

She was always eager to increase her own knowledge and skills and to share these with colleagues. She accomplished this sharing with sensitivity and grace, illustrated by the message sent to her by a vet colleague, qualified in another country, whom she had been mentoring:

‘You look like you are enjoying teaching. I find amazing your approach and your patience. You have inspired me.’

She was sensitive, too, to the feelings of owners who brought their pets to her. One of the letters of thanks sent to her arrived too late for her to read it, but it echoed the sentiments of earlier missives:

‘Thank you for valuing the love my daughter had for her little bunny, for helping us to say goodbye in such a respectful, kind and gentle way, giving us all the time we needed to say goodbye, sitting on the floor with us whilst we cried. Thank you for your true kindness and compassion.’

To kindness and compassion might be added her huge generosity of spirit, her integrity, and her bravery in personal tragedy.

© Joyce Simlett-Moss 2023

Angharad loved to spend her free time in the company of her family, her friends, the family dog, and her cats. She liked to travel and was an enthusiastic cook and explorer of different cuisines. She took pleasure in creating and tending her garden. She was hoping to find time to resume playing the cello at which, in her teenage years, she had been outstanding: she won distinction in every performing grade exam offered by the Associated Board of the Royal Colleges of Music, played in several orchestras and led the cello section of the Merseyside Youth Orchestra. She was a prolific reader. She liked visiting historic houses. She wielded a paintbrush and drill with enthusiasm in her house. She loved horse-riding and following horsey events like racing, jumping, dressage, and eventing. She was learning to ski. What most excited her, though, was scuba diving. She was captivated by the profusion of underwater life she saw in tropical waters and had a particular fondness for sharks, rays and turtles (attested by the numerous wood and stone carvings of these she delighted in displaying in her rooms). After completing the two PADI qualifications she had signed up to on a diving holiday in the Philippines, her instructor suggested she take a more advanced course. She had not budgeted for this and affording it was not easy but she decided, nevertheless, to seize the opportunity, and to her joy she achieved PADI certificates in Open Water Diving, Advanced Open Water Diving and the Enriched Air Diver certificate. She was looking forward to building on these on her next diving holiday, perhaps with a wreck diving qualification, declaring, ‘I can’t wait to go somewhere warm and dive again’.

Angharad loved Africa, which she had visited several times with her scientist-parents, who had carried out hydrobiological research on Lake Chilwa in Malawi, and hoped to volunteer there with the WVS herself one day. The bursary in her name reflects that hope and, in its focus on training colleagues, her commitment to sharing up-to-date skills and knowledge to ensure the best possible outcome for patients.


Angharad Simlett-Moss, Clinical Conundrum: The case of an icteric Cocker Spaniel, BSAVA Companion, February 2017(2): 8–11 DOI

Angharad B Simlett-Moss, Alistair Freeman, Fraser J McConnell, Richard Coe, Daniel Sanchez-Masian, Successful surgical management of an Escherichia coli epidural-subdural abscess secondary to sino-rhinotomy, Journal of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care, 2019, vol 29(6), 696–701 DOI

*Jean-Benoit Tanis, Angharad Simlett-Moss, Malgorzata Ossowksa, Thomas W Maddox, James Guillem, Cristobal Lopez-Jimenez, Gerry Polton, Rachel Burrow, Riccardo Finotello, Canine anal sac gland carcinoma with regional lymph node metastases treated with sacculectomy and lymphadenectomy: Outcome and possible prognostic factors, Vet Comp Oncol. Mar 2022;20(1):276–292 DOI Oct 12, 2021

*Angharad Simlett-Moss, Gareth Arthurs, Frederike Schiborra, Eithne Comerford, Lateral Patellar Luxations following Bilateral Hip Joint Replacement in a Dog, Thieme Open Access, July 2022 DOI ISSN 2625-2325 VCOT Open 2022;5:e41–e49 License CC BY 4.0

© Joyce Simlett-Moss 2024, All Rights Reserved

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