Meet the Team

Partners

David Birkin BDS MFGDP (GDC registration:103299)

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David was born in Bishop Auckland and was raised in Barnard Castle and Darlington, attending Yarm School from the age of 8.  David graduated from the University of Newcastle in 2006 with Distinction in Clinical Dentistry and returned to the region post – graduation.  He currently lives in Over Silton with his wife, two sons and one daughter.

David worked in The Dental Centre Group in Middlesbrough for three years with Ben, Guy, Neeraj and Ian gaining experience with high need patients helping to stabilise declining oral condition and returning patients to a high standard of dental health before moving on to becoming a founding member of Alpha Dental Group in 2008 with the opening of the first Alpha site in Catterick.

Further studies have meant that David was awarded Membership of the Faculty of General Dental Practitioners (MFGDP 2008) and has since gone on to complete UCLAN Teaching and learning in Dental Practice with Merit.

Clinically, David enjoys restorative dentistry; in particular the cosmetic aspects of smile design and how to improve smile aesthetics.  This has been aided by completion of a restorative dentistry course at the Academy of Clinical Excellence, together with numerous post graduate courses including Quick Straight Teeth and composite (white) filling masterclasses with the world renowned Jason Smithson.

In his spare time, David enjoys spending time with his family and is a keen sportsman playing rugby in the Durham/Northumberland league for Sedgefield, playing squash and running.  He combines keeping fit with a number of events for his chosen charities, the Stroke Association and the Great North Air Ambulance – so far the London Marathon, numerous Great North Runs and the 3 Yorkshire Peaks Challenge.

Future aspirations would have to involve the growth and consolidation of the Alpha Dental Group ensuring that it continues to provide quality NHS and Private dentistry in the region for many years to come.

Neeraj Diddee BDS MFGDP (GDC registration: 85829)

alpha_200916_03Neeraj Diddee is a dental professional who was born and brought up in Durham and has recently resided to Newcastle. He graduated from Newcastle University in 2005 and has since been keen and motivated to deliver the highest quality of dental care as well as further developing his career.

Since graduating, Neeraj has worked in the North East providing both NHS and Private dental care. He has continued to develop his professional training by gaining his postgraduate dental diploma in 2007, allowing membership of the Faculty of General Dental Practice. In 2008 he became a member of the Northern Division of the Faculty of General Dental Practice and was elected as the Secretary in 2009.

He has also undertaken many varied courses including a yearlong course in Advanced Restorative dentistry which he has a keen interest to develop and apply when treating his patients.

Neeraj joined the Alpha Dental Group in 2009 and is acting as the Lead Dentist in Fairfield (Stockton). He is enjoying the challenges of managing the practice and thriving to further develop his skills.

Outside of work Neeraj loves going on holiday, gadgets, technology and cars!

Ian Gordon BDS MFGDP (GDC registration: 58968)

alpha_200916_05Ian graduated from Newcastle University in 1984 – before some of his partners went to primary school…!

He grew up in Stokesley and went to the Friends’ School in Great Ayton – and now has practices in both places with Vitality Complete Dental Care in Stokesley and Alpha Dental Studio in Great Ayton – something, which was an ambition once he had decided to study dentistry.

Ian is married to wife Jayne who is also a dentist and has three children.

On qualifying, Ian returned to the area working in Guisborough and Acklam before buying his first practice in Eaglescliffe in 1989.  He soon became involved in Vocational Training for new dental graduates and was a trainer for 13 times before becoming a Vocational Training Adviser in the region, a post he still holds.  Ian went on to establish a further five practices in Guisborough and Middlesbrough forming The Dental Centre Group in 2000.  A corporate chain acquired the Dental Centre Group in 2007 and in October 2008 Ian together with David Birkin took over an established practice in Catterick Garrison launching the first Alpha Dental Studio.

Ian has always been involved in the politics of dentistry via involvement with local dental committees (LDC) nationally and locally. He was chair of Tees LDC for several years and is currently Vice Chair of North Yorkshire LDC. In 2006 he co-founded the dental pressure group Challenge to campaign for a better NHS contract for dentists and patients.

Ian describes himself as an all rounder clinically and has undertaken additional training in many areas including Orthodontics (braces) endodontics (root fillings) and cosmetic dentistry (crowns and veneers) as well as keeping generally up to date via over 100 hours of postgraduate training a year.

Currently he divides his working life between Alpha Dental Studio and Vitality, working for the Northern Deanery, representing the LDC and as a local adviser to one of the dental protection societies helping dentists with difficulties.

This is a busy schedule and does not give too much free time – however when time allows Ian enjoys travel, socialising with friends and colleagues, watching football (especially his son’s football team) and enjoying the house he and Jayne have just completed building.

Ian sums up by saying “I felt lost after losing control of The Dental Centre to a Corporate. Establishing Alpha Dental Studio has brought renewed ambition and these are very exciting times for me. I am able to work with partners who I know, trust and respect and we have a fantastic team of dentists and support staff around us, many of whom worked with us before.  I look forward to developing the group with them and not to retirement – well not just yet at any rate!”

Guy Wells BDS MFGDP (GDC registration:85721)

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Originally from West Yorkshire, Guy graduated from Newcastle University in 2005. He has remained in the North East and completed his Vocational Training at The Dental Centre with Ben and Ian as his trainers in 2006. He continued to work for The Dental Centre until 2008. Since then Guy has worked in Hartlepool and in Northumberland providing both private and NHS dental care.

Since qualifying as a dentist Guy has developed professionally by gaining his postgraduate dental diploma allowing him Membership of the Faculty of General Dental Practitioners (MFGDP UK) and has completed a large number of courses to allow him develop and improve his skills. This allows Guy to provide high quality NHS and private dental care.

Guy enjoys all aspects of dentistry but has a particular interest in cosmetic and preventative dentistry. Guy’s priorities within Alpha are to provide high quality dental work in a professional and friendly environment.

Guy lives locally with his wife and two children and enjoys socialising with his friends and his interests include cars, music, films and exercising.

Ben Wild BDS (GDC registration:71880)

alpha_200916_07Born and bred in North Yorkshire Ben moved to Newcastle where he trained as a dentist.  After qualifying he stayed in Newcastle and was involved in a pilot training scheme where he worked in hospital and gained valuable experience in a variety of specialised areas.  He moved back down to North Yorkshire with his wife Debbie in 1998 when they had their first child Charlie.  He worked as an associate in a number of practices, a useful insight into how different practices work including a private practice in Northallerton.  He became a business partner in The Dental Centre group with Ian Gordon in 2005, running practices in Eaglescliffe and Guisborough.

The challenge of building a new dental business in North Yorkshire was one he could not refuse and so the opportunity to develop the site at Northallerton spearheaded a new and exciting chapter in his professional life.

In addition to interests in cosmetic dentistry and care of the older patient Ben has been a past member of Tees Local Dental Committee, spent time working on the Executive Committee of an NHS PCT and trained newly qualified dentists for a number of years.

Since 2009 he has also worked as a Training Advisor in the Northern Deanery to running the Wearside scheme for newly qualified dentists. The opportunity to teach younger dentists builds on Bens desire to commit himself to ongoing post graduate learning, something he has a passion for. He has himself undergone a recent year long postgraduate training course and is keen to promote ongoing education of all team members within the practice.

Outside dentistry Ben has a keen interest in spending time with his family, walking, food and cookery, travelling and following many sports.

Orthodontics

Ross Hobson

(GDC registration:58981)

Dentist Ross Hobson, first qualified as a dentist in Newcaslte 1984. Determined to be a academic orthodontist he undertook house jobs in Birmingham and Newcastle and became junior lecturer in Oral biology for two years gaining his Masters in Dental Surgery (MDS) degree.

Spending time in Glasgow and Dundee, Ross gained a Fellowship in Dental Surgery (FDS) and passed his MOrth examination before returning to Newcastle as Lecturer in Orthodontics in 1992.

He was promoted to Senior Lecturer and Honorary Consultant and became head of Child Dental Health and Degree Programme Director for the MSc course in Orthodontics until April 2009.

In 2000, he founded the first private only specialist orthodontic practice in the North of England and is the owner and driver of the development of the Windmill Dental Suite, the North of England’s first private specialist referral centre

In 2010, Windmill Orthodontics, a group of orthodontic practices across the North of England with sites in Carlisle, Gateshead, Penrith, Newcastle were opened and in 2011, working together with Alpha Dental Studio, Bedale offers Orthodonitic treatment in North Yorkshire.

Implant Team

alpha_200916_09Haytham Abbas BDS (Ncle 2005), MFDS (RCS Eng 2008), Dip Implants

(GDC registation: 101012)

Born in Egypt, but raised in Hong Kong, Haytham moved to the UK to study dentistry in Newcastle, where he fell for the charm of the North East and he has lived in the area ever since!

After qualifying in 2005, Haytham started off his career in a competitive hospital training program which led him to focus on his interest in Oral Surgery.  He spent the next 5 years gaining experience in a wide range of surgical procedures with the support of some of the finest consultants in Maxillofacial surgery.  In 2010, he was given the opportunity to work in a large sedation based dental clinic. He gained vast experience treating hundreds of patients under sedation whilst carrying out a wide variety of dental treatments.

Alongside his clinical commitments, Haytham enrolled onto the Warwick University Dental Implantology Diploma. In 2014 he was awarded his Diploma in dental Implantology and has since helped hundreds of patients regain their smiles and function with the aid of dental implants.

Haytham joined Alpha Dental Studio and Alpha Vitality Implant Clinic in April 2013. He provides sedation for patients at our Catterick and Stokesley practices. In addition to this, Haytham has been carrying out implant treatment for the group at Fairfield, Catterick and Stokesley to help minimise patient travel within the Alpha group. And in September 2016 he will be able to offer his implant services at our Chester le Street practice. Combining sedation and implants has enabled him to offer patients the possibility of being relaxed and comfortable throughout their implant journey.

When he is not working, Haytham enjoys spending time with his wife and two children and is a keen sportsman.  A footballer at heart, he now mostly plays socially, but has also discovered a love for cycling and has taken part in several races and charity events.

“I find treating anxious patients very rewarding, my experience with sedation means I can provide quality care for patients who would otherwise be too nervous to have treatment.”

“My experience with implants has led me to carry out a wide variety of treatments, from straight forward single tooth implants to complex full arch cases and I have found the results for my patients beyond what I would have imagined. The joy on my patients’ faces when they return having been able to be confident in smiling or going out for meals is what I strive to achieve for every patient.”

David Veige BDS (Ncle, 2008) MJDF (RCS Eng.) MSc. Implant Dentistry

Vitality. Picture taken by Dawn McNamara 16/06/16

(GDC registration: 150180)

David hails from Toronto Ontario, Canada. He originally trained as a dental technician in Canada where he partnered with his older brother at the full service dental lab, Smile Designs Veige Laboratory. David is the director of the UK wing of Smile Designs based in Harrogate which specialises in advanced implant work, smile makeovers and porcelain veneers. Having experience in both the laboratory and clinical side of dentistry has helped David treat complex dental issues working closely with his laboratory.David qualified from the University of Newcastle with a distinction in academic dentistry and the top restorative dentistry prize. He was shortlisted for the Young Dentist of the year UK at The Dentistry Awards in 2009. He has successfully been awarded membership to the Royal College of Surgeons Joint Dental Faculty by way of examination.

He graduated with merit from the University of Warwick with a Masters of Science degree in implant dentistry and since has placed over a thousand implants. He is a member of the ITI (International Team for Implantology)(www.iti.org) and the ADI (Association of Dental Implantology) organizations focused on advancing the science of implant dentistry.

David holds quality above all and strives for excellence in all his implant treatments.

David takes great pride in restoring aesthetics, via smile makeovers and dental implants, which provide patients with improved confidence and self esteem.

” Bringing together the latest advancements in digital dentistry, dental technology and clinical dentistry into one arena so that the patients experience and journey during implant treatment is as seamless as possible.” 

Periodontal Referral

Mike Barnett BChD, MSc (Clinical Periodontology), MFGDP(UK)

alpha_200916_10GDC registration: 69592

Mike qualified in 1993 at Leeds University. In 2000, Mike moved back to the northeast working at various practices in East Cleveland. During this time he met Mike Pearson and in 2005 they opened Park Avenue Dental Practice in Redcar. The practice has always had a strong periodontal ethos and Mike decided to further his training in this field by completing an MSc in Clinical Periodontology at the University of Central Lancashire. This was awarded (with merit) in May 2013. Mike’s main interest has always been the treatment of disease and this continues to be the case within periodontology – in particular with the treatment of periodontal disease and those cases requiring bone regeneration.

Mike is now accepting referrals at Vitality Dental Practice. This could be for any aspect of periodontal treatment or simply just advice with treatment planning.

 

 

Endodontic Referral

Tom Brannen BDS 2010. MFDS RCS Edin 2013

alpha_200916_12GDC registration: 192100

Dr Tom Brannen graduated from Newcastle University Dental School in 2010. He has since worked to continue his development through postgraduate education to enable himself to provide high quality treatment using evidence based modern techniques.

In 2013 he achieved Membership of The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. Since 2014 Tom has been a trainer for the Northern Deanery providing guidance to newly qualified dentists through the early stages of their careers. This enable him ensure he maintains a high standard of knowledge and care and keeps him up to date with modern teachings.

Tom’s interest lies in maintaining a patients dental health, function and aesthetics for as long as possible. Nothing is better than your own tooth and he has focused his postgraduate education on modern techniques to maintain maximum tooth structure at every stage. He has further postgraduate qualifications in intravenous sedation to help provide nervous patients with the treatment they require but are too nervous to otherwise tolerate.

In 2014 he began his MSC training in Endodontics (Root Treatments) at the prestigious Kings College London. Since then he has also been working using high powered magnification including the use of a dental microscope. The operating microscope allows him to visualise in great detail the internal anatomy of a tooth and enables him to gain improved success rates. The camera attachment allows for further patient education and further progression through constructive critique of each case. He is a member of the British Endodontic
Society and attends the annual meetings and conferences.

As well as enjoying achieving the highest standard in endodontics he also has a keen interest in restorative dentistry including direct and indirect bonded restorations.
“I aim to provide high-quality treatment, using the latest equipment, materials and techniques in a calm and caring environment. I want to provide patients with sufficient information to enable them to maintain a healthy mouth and ensure longevity of any dental work. Only through thorough discussion and planning of each individuals needs can we find the treatment plan suitable for each case.”Tom has lived and worked in the North east for 10 years but was originally from the North west and he still finds time to return to the Lake District. In his spare time his interests include maintaining his fitness, golf, skiing, travel, and cooking.He is always enthusiastic about his work and is happy to have a conversation regarding treatment options or any personal similar interests

Associate Dentists

Robert Broadbent

(GDC registration: 85682)

Rob qualified from Newcastle University in 2005 and has since worked in Hull and on the Wirral before joining Alpha in May 2010. Rob currently works in Alpha Dental Bedale

He loves all aspects of dentistry and comes a close second to his love of food and skiing.

Chandhna Chandrakumar

(GDC registration: 170338)

Chandhna hails from the coastal city of Chennai in India. Upon graduation from The Tamil Nadu Dr.M.G.R Medical University in 2006, she moved to United Kingdom. She then gained registration with the General Dental Council by passing the overseas registration exam at the first attempt in 2008. She gained valuable surgical experience by working for 18 months in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery in Lincoln County Hospital and Pinderfields General Infirmary. She has also developed professionally by completing her exams for her postgraduate dental diploma, Membership of Joint Dental Faculties (MJDF).

She was then selected for the Vocational Training scheme in Yorkshire Deanery, and completed the same at Alpha Dental Studio, Northallerton with Guy as trainer in 2011. She has since then been working as an Associate at Alpha Dental surgeries in Bedale and Northallerton.

Chandhna enjoys all aspects of dentistry but has special interest in restorative and cosmetic dentistry.  She is committed to providing evidence based dental treatment tailored to the needs of the individual in a caring and professional manner.

Chandhna lives locally with her husband. She has a keen interest in cooking and a trained Carnatic singer and also does painting in her leisure time.

Angela Daniel

(GDC registration: 77794)

After qualifying from Sheffield in 2000, Angela joined the RAF where she worked as a dentist until 2006, attaining the rank of Squadron Leader. She then worked in an NHS practice in Cheshire before moving up to the Yorkshire Dales, joining Alpha in 2008. Angela currently works at the Catterick, Leyburn and Hawes practices. She is a Foundation Dentist Trainer and has a Postgraduate Certificate in Healthcare Education. Angela is currently studying for a Postgraduate Diploma in Restorative Dentistry. She also has a small flock of sheep, a pig, lots of chickens, 2 dogs and a very understanding husband.

Emily Fairbrother

(GDC registration: 250995)

After finishing my degree in Newcastle 2014 I joined Alpha as a Foundation Dentist. Following completion of foundation training I continued working for Alpha as an Associate in Catterick.

I am always keen to learn and have done various courses over the past two years. I am currently studying for a Masters in Restorative and Aesthetic Dentistry at Manchester University as this is the area of dentistry that I enjoy the most. I am also planning on completing my exams for The Diploma of Membership of the Joint Dental Faculties at The Royal College of Surgeons of England later this year.

Outisde of work I enjoy open water swimming and I am now training to swim the length of Lake Windemere (10.4 miles) in September this year.

Christine Gordon

(GDC registration: 163224)

Christine is originally from the North East and graduated from the University of Sheffield in 2012. She then made the move down to London where she completed her foundation training and for the last four years has been providing NHS and private treatments at a practice in South West London, which she has very much enjoyed. Christine has taken the opportunity to move back to the North to join the Alpha Dental team as lead clinician at our Chester Le Street practice.

With a kind and compassionate nature Christine’s friendly approach allows patients to feel relaxed and at ease, creating a positive dental experience for them.

It is Christine’s mission to deliver consistently high quality, patient-centred treatment. With great passion she provides time, support and commitment to patients to create and maintain happy, healthy, beautiful smiles.

Christine has a keen interest in minimally invasive cosmetic treatments and aesthetic orthodontics; which allows patients to straighten their front teeth in a shorter amount of time. In addition to this she is a keen facial aesthetics practitioner and can provide wrinkle relaxing injections and dermal fillers.

Christine was successfully awarded membership to the Royal college of Surgeons & Physicians by way of examination.

Outside of work, Christine maintains an active and healthy lifestyle and loves fitness, skiing, socialising with friends & family, and travelling.

Julia Harrington

(GDC registration: 257937)

Alex Head

(GDC registration: 212489)

Alex graduated from Peninsula Dental School in 2011, having previously obtained an honours degree in Physics from Leicester University.

He moved to North Yorkshire to complete foundation training with Angela Smith, before deciding to stay on with Alpha in their Catterick and Kirkbymoorside practices.

Committed to postgraduate learning, Alex is in the process of completing his MJDF qualification (Member of Joint Dental Faculty).

Outside dentistry he likes walking, playing the saxophone, watching rugby and cooking.

Shahrzad Hodaei

(GDC registration: 85697)

Rebecca Kingswood

(GDC registration: 251088)

Nancy Lockwood

(GDC registration: 64903)

Nancy qualified as a dentist in 1989 from Birmingham University and obtained a postgraduate Diploma In General Dental Practice from the Faculty of General Dental Practitioners (UK) in 1997.

In 1990 Nancy joined the Royal Army Dental Corps to provide comprehensive oral health care to serving military personnel at home and on active duty. This extended to care of service families overseas, and included active involvement and coordination of prevention of dental disease campaigns.  Nancy’s military career included postings not only in UK and Northern Ireland, but also in Germany, Cyprus and Canada. She also had deployments to Bosnia and Iraq where she was responsible for the dental cover and treatment of our Armed Forces during operational tours, but also for management and hands-on humanitarian aid projects.

In the last 10 years of her military service Nancy had Senior Dental Officer Posts in large military dental Practices. In addition to her clinical primary role she also was actively involved in the training, development, management and mentoring of more junior staff members.

Nancy retired from the Army after over 18 years service, and the arrival of her daughter, having reached to rank of Lieutenant Colonel. She has since worked in mixed NHS and Private dental Practices before joining the Alpha team.

Nancy enjoys all aspects of dentistry, but gains immense satisfaction helping guide patients in techniques to prevent dental disease and maintain good oral health.

Emily Lovegreen

(GDC registration: 243789)

Emily was brought up on her family farm near Richmond, North Yorkshire.  She graduated from Queen’s University Belfast in 2013 with prizes in Oral surgery and dental prosthetics. Emily took up a post in Marton and at Newcastle Dental Hospital where she completed her General Professional Training. She was then offered a position at James Cook Hospital to undertake a year in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery as a Senior House Officer roll.

Emily joined Alpha Dental in 2016 with a keen interest in Oral Surgery learnt from her experiences in hospital dentistry.

Outside of dentistry, Emily lives with her husband on his family farm. She can often be found in the greenhouse, in the kitchen baking or out on the farm walking four black Labradors.

Kirsty Micklethwaite

(GDC registration: 258105)

Originally from Leeds, Kirsty found her love of dentistry following her dental care at Leeds Dental Institute as a teenager. She graduated from UCLan Dental School in 2015, having previously obtaining an honours degree in Biomedical Science from Hull University. After completing her foundation dental year with Alpha in Bedale, she stayed on and now works between the Bedale and Catterick practices.

Kirsty lives in North Yorkshire with her soon to be husband and outside of work enjoys walking, listening to live music and spending time with her friends and family.

Mihai Neacsu

(GDC registration: 133099)

Mihai was born in Bucharest, Romania and he graduated Carol Davila University, Bucharest in 2000. After graduation he worked for eight years as a general dental Practitioner and managing partner in a private practice in Bucharest and for three years he also held a management position in Elias University Hospital Bucharest. Mihai gained his Master degree in Public Health in Carol Davila University, Bucharest.

He moved to the UK in 2008 to work as a general dental practitioner for one of the biggest dental companies in the UK. He moved to Queensway Dental Clinic as an associate in 2009 where he developed an interest in conscious sedation techniques. Mihai is at present studying towards the Diploma in Conscious Sedation at Newcastle University and he finds helping anxious patients an extremely rewarding aspect of his work.

Mihai joined Alpha Northallerton in 2012. He loves dentistry ‘a mixture of art and technology’ in his view and is completely devoted to help his patients feel at ease and relaxed during treatment. Mihai has developed an interest in endodontics, restorative dentistry and he is keen on constantly improving his skills.

Mihai lives locally with his wife, son and daughter. He is a devoted parent and loves spending as much time as possible with his family which includes two dogs and 17 pheasants!

Paran Nithiananthan

(GDC registration: 193019)

Paran was born and raised in the North East. He graduated from Manchester University in 2010 and moved back to the area. He is interested in furthering his qualifications and is currently working towards gaining his MJDF qualification.

Outside of work Paran enjoys sports, music and technology.

Nicky Sharp

(GDC registration: 85714)

Robert Shaw

(GDC registration: 83205)

Robert qualified with a BDS from Liverpool in 2004 and returned home to Middlesbrough to do his vocational training with Dr Phil Magson whom he followed to Great Ayton.

He enjoys the variety that a general dental practice brings.

Tim Swales

(GDC registration: 258519)

David Walker

(GDC registration: 103357)

Nina Wilson

(GDC registration: 71867)

Locum Dentists

James Ball

(GDC registration: 259251)

Pallavi Rudraprakash Shouri

(GDC registration:  245414)

Chandan Shouri

(GDC registration: 109436)

Foundation Dentists

Alexandra Benstock

(GDC registration: 223174)

Aamna Hussain

(GDC registration: 483653)

Samera Khan

(GDC registration: 264341)

Lizzi Melia-Hull

(GDC registration: 264985)

Danny O’Connor

(GDC registration: 265230)

Therapists

Donna Ashby

(GDC registration: 107855)

Rebecca Cunningham

(GDC registration: 155569)

Laura Rogers

(GDC registration: 204720)