Dr Lucy Jocelyn Burnett

Welcome to the wonderful story of Dr Lucy Jocelyn Burnett – she was Hickling’s first lady doctor and she practised in our area from 1927 to 1935. Maggy Wadkin wrote that her arrival, ‘put the cat amongst the pigeons’ but that everyone quickly became very fond of her.

She was ‘a little slip of a thing’ but she did her rounds on an early Enfield motor-cycle or in her sports car and she was always accompanied by her dog, Christopher – he rode pillion on the back of the motorbike, wound up the local dogs with his barking and sat outside each home as the ‘Little Doc’ made her visits.

As a young woman of 26 when she came to the area she was a pioneer amongst women emerging in the medical profession and she undertook all the roles that you would expect; including weekly drop-in clinics at the Chapel, midnight dashes on horseback through the floods to attend a Hickling birth and the work we now associate with paramedics – first on the scene at accidents and tragedies across the Vale of Belvoir (the news clippings of these incidents paint a vivid picture of her life).

There are lots of anecdotes, news clippings and memories of her at her retirement and the time of her death – we hope you will come to love her as much as we do!!

In 1935 she moved to Clive in Shropshire where she remained until her death in the 1970s; we are very grateful to the local history group in Clive and Grinshill who have filled out her story and given us the only photographs we have of her. We hope that more will follow!

Dr Lucy Burnett with her motorbike and her dog, Christopher
Dr Lucy Burnett with her motorbike and her dog, Christopher