ABOUT THE PENN CLINIC OF OSTEOPATHY
The Penn Clinic was established nearly 40 years ago by the clinic founder Caroline Penn. The directorship was recently passed to Alex Bidlake-Corser who has worked under Caroline since 2011.
Philosophy of patient care:
When Caroline started the clinic in 1979 she was still recovering from serious head injury. She determined to establish a clinic where patients would feel at home and be heard on two levels; both their verbal description of their problems and their body’s inner message.
She found that cranial osteopathy would comprise a major part of what she wanted to make available to patients, but she also realised that there is no single answer to everything; we need to be open to whatever is needed for individuals at the particular time we are working with them.
Caroline has benefited hugely herself from an integrated approach to her own recovery and the clinic still operates with this ethos today. Alex is extremely proud that the clinic is able to offer such a wealth of talent and professionalism.
ALEX BIDLAKE-CORSER - Clinic Director & Osteopath
My training in contemporary dance was instrumental in my decision to study osteopathy – a hip injury took me to an osteopath to aid my recovery. My experience of injury and recovery deepened my understanding of how the body works and I decided to learn more. I chose to study osteopathy as it had worked so well for me and I feel that having had (many) injuries myself gives me a deeper level of empathy.
I enjoy helping people to better understand their own body through osteopathic treatment. I find that this then empowers the individual to begin to work with this better understanding of themselves, their condition and their body to then enable them to learn how to avoid injury whilst continuing to enjoy the activities that are important to them.
I am passionate about treating all ages to help people to achieve their best health. No matter what time in life they come to osteopathy.
My passions are: walking in the countryside, reading, dance and a good meal out with friends. I have a young son who is extremely passionate about dinosaurs - so I expect to be an expert in this field very soon.
CAROLINE PENN - Osteopath, HANDLE Practitioner
DO(Hons), MSc, FSCC, PHI
Caroline completed a Masters degree in Osteopathy in 2003 undertaking research with infants under three months old with breathing difficulties.
Caroline is an authority on problems in babies and has worked with infants in special care baby units in Hertfordshire and London, and collaborated with audiology services in Hertfordshire for glue ear problems in children.
Caroline has been a member of the BSSCMD (British Society for the Study of Cranio-Mandibular Disorders) for more than 20 years and has pioneered working osteopathically with dentists and orthodontists. She has a close working relationship with a number of dentists and orthodontists.
Caroline has also taken further study in areas which include, gestalt psychotherapy, traumatic and disc injuries, sleep problems, scoliosis and neurodevelopmental and behavioural issues see HANDLE. Caroline is a fully qualified HANDLE Practitioner & instructor since 2012.
I enjoy working with patients across their whole life span, from birth through to the winter years. I place an emphasis on preventative care which had fired my enthusiasm for working with infants and for helping people throughout life to understand their body and be pro-active in maintaining their own health.
I live life to the full and have researched solutions to my own health problems which began with serious head injury in 1977. I never cease to be amazed at the healing power of the body and the incredible changes that osteopathy can achieve. I have great respect for the different healthcare disciplines and pride myself on seeking out the best complementary approaches and therapists to enhance our osteopathic work at the clinic. With tough cases, or those wanting to push themselves to higher levels of health and fitness, working as a team offers so much more than one practitioner alone can achieve.
I love walking in wild places especially mountains, swimming in lakes and rivers, gazing across wide vistas, singing, playing my clarinet, dancing, cycling and spending time with my family and friends.
ANDREW MACMILLAN - Osteopath
I’m a strong believer in empowering people through education and support to help get you back to the things you enjoy. I explain what’s happening to each individual and give advice on how to best manage their symptoms to get them results as quickly as possible. This advice often includes; exercise, lifestyle and nutrition.
This approach allows me to put together detailed and personalised treatment plans from a holistic perspective to maximise your recovery and prevent further issues.
Having suffered from long term back pain myself, I am very empathetic I understand the impact it can have on your life. I know how important it is to be listened to by your health care team and to actually be told what is happening and what you can do to help yourself!
I have a passion for helping people and learning new skills to do so. My special interests are in exercise rehabilitation (including post-surgical) , headaches/migraines and paediatrics.
When not at work I spend a lot of time cooking or in my garden as well as reading and trying to keep fit.
CHARLOTTE WARD - Osteopath
Before becoming an Osteopath, I worked in the City as a busy Corporate lawyer. After an episode of burnout, I turned to Osteopathy when conventional medicine didn’t help. I was amazed at how the gentle treatment had such a powerful impact and how it encouraged my body back to health. This life-changing experience inspired me to retrain as an Osteopath so that I could help others in the same way.
In my spare time I love to swim and practise yoga, take long walks in nature and to travel and experience different cultures.
CARA DAW - Osteopath
Cara is interested in developing her skills in the gentlest types of work that can benefit her patients. Cara looks deeply into what may be underlying the issues that lead people to seek help.
Cara includes consideration of the types of reactions that individuals may have to prescription medications and she includes this in her assessment. Cara says; ‘The fundamental principle of Osteopathy is to help the body return to health. Once health is restored the need for medication can be reduced or even made redundant.’
With previous work history in a corporate environment I understand the stresses and strains that modern lifestyles and sedentary occupations can place on the body. I have first-hand knowledge of being a patient and in particular seeing my three children supported by osteopathy towards the most robust health. My personal experience enables me to trust in the body’s ability to move towards health and my work confirms that trust everyday!
"Family and friends, the great outdoors, good food, music, books and movies.”
ALLISON BROWN - Osteopath
KIM MARTIN - Clinic Manager
As I have now been at the clinic for over 20 years I have seen many patients who first came as babies growing up through the years. It is marvellous to see them doing well! Some have now brought their own baby to the clinic! Prior to working at the Penn Clinic I worked within two financial institutions holding a variety of positions ranging from secretarial cashiering and administration. My idea of heaven? A jigsaw puzzle of Elvis Presley and a rainy day!
SATU JACKSON - Registered Nutritional Therapist and NLP Practitioner
MSc Personalised Nutrition DipION CertNLP mBANT CNHC
Satu enjoys exploring the variety of dietary components and lifestyle options available to identify practical measures that could make a difference to everyday life and wellbeing. ‘Life is for living – to the full!’
I enjoy the amazing beauty of nature in its many forms, walking, hiking or just allowing for a moment of quiet contemplation. My absolute favourite is a rugged coastline with empty beaches, the ones that are not meant for sun worshippers, ideally with a hot drink and a good old-fashioned cinnamon bun!
YVETTE LAVENDER - Medical Herbalist & Massage
BSc NIMH CHNC ITEC
"Plants have played a pivotal role in the history of medicine with some of the worlds greatest healing agents derived from the plant kingdom. Not many people know that the willow tree provided the original source of aspirin, the prescribed anti-cancer drug, Taxol, is derived from the Yew tree and a compound from the daffodil bulb is used to treat Alzheimer's disease.
Nature is the master-chemist and I am truly fascinated by the idea that our hedgerows and our own gardens are potential medicine cabinets providing a wealth of natural anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-tumour agents contained in common plants and even weeds such as elder (Sambucus nigra), nettles (Urtica dioica), dandelion (Taraxacum officinale), plantain (Plantago majus, P. lanceolata), cleavers (Galium aparine) and yarrow (Achillea millefolium).
I am passionate about helping people to further their knowledge and understanding of the medicinal potency of plants and how they can be used to prevent disease and restore us to optimum health.
I am passionate about my herb garden and I love researching and creating medicinal and healing soups! I enjoy live music events and festivals, reading, studying, travelling, walking, undertaking new projects and spending time at home with family and friends & digging around in my herb garden!"