A Big Thank You!

Victor Spencer would like to thank his patients for the numerous cards,letters and kind sentiments he received in the weeks leading up to his retirement on 31st December 2021.


On this page you are able to find further information on the following:

  • Advice for Patients
  • Appointment Procedure
  • Dental Common Concerns
  • Opening Times
  • New Patient Registrations
  • NHS Charges & Exemptions
  • Dental Staff
  • Policies
  • Complaints & Feedback

Lyme Bay Dental Practice

The safety of you and our staff is top priority as we begin to reopen our doors and return to providing you with the same standard of dental care that you have been used to. As such, there are a few things you will need to consider before your appointment. Please read our appointment procedure before contacting the sugery

Advice for Patients

Dental Practices are open

In the first national lockdown, dental practices were only open for emergencies & advice. However, during this second national lockdown, Lyme Bay Dental has remained open.

Dental Practices are safe

Our Dentists and all of our team are trained in oral healthcare and infection prevention and control too. Dental practices are well-versed in providing safe care having practised cross-infection control for many years and the use of personal protective equipment. The experience of coming to Lyme Bay Dental might be different now, but it remains a safe place to be.

Patients might need patience

We are still catching up from when we closed during the first national lockdown and NHS care nationwide is facing a backlog.

Our main priorities are:

• Patients needing urgent care

• Patients at higher risk of oral disease

• Patients with outstanding treatment needs.

• and then dental check ups

The reason for the long wait is not just because of the backlog, but also because there’s a lot more disinfection required after each treatment. Sometimes, we have to wait anything up to half an hour before we can see another patient in the chair.

NHS and Private Care

Some patients might find that a treatment is available quicker privately than it is on the NHS. As with medical care, this is often because the queue for NHS treatment is longer. It may simply be that there are many more people looking for NHS appointments than private appointments.

What are dental appointments like?

We are using full personal protective equipment such as mask, gloves and aprons and social distancing measures to keep staff and patients safe.

• If you call to make an appointment, you will be asked some screening questions. You’ll be asked those same questions again at your appointment to see if anything has changed since you booked & complete a COVID questionnaire

• You will be asked to use hand sanitiser or to wash your hands when you arrive (and again before you leave)

• You will be asked to wear a mask in the waiting rooms if you can

• You will find appropriate social distancing markers in our waiting rooms & we ask that these are followed

• You will also notice that the dental team may be wearing different protective equipment to what you are used to seeing – this will be to increase your protection

• Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you’re offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment. How you can help:

• Please make sure you keep your appointment if you have one; it’s going to be safe and it’s important we don’t waste limited resources. If you can’t make an appointment, we would be able to offer it to someone else who really needs it.

• Please do not arrive without an appointment

• With the exception of children and persons in need, patients should come alone

• Patients should attend wearing a mask if possible or be prepared to wear one. A distance of at least two metres must be observed if another patient is present in the dental practice

• Please do not arrive early to the practice. If necessary, you should wait outside until your appointment time

• Staff will not shake your hand

• If you show symptoms following appointment booking, you should contact NHS Test and Trace.

It is likely to be some time before dental services can return to what you have previously experienced. However, our dental team are doing all they can to ensure you receive the treatment you require in the safest way.

Please be assured that we are working within the current guidelines issued by the Government and are doing our best to help patients wherever possible.

Receptionists are also doing their best to ensure that priority cases are treated as soon as possible. Please treat all our staff with respect.

We know it can be stressful, but they are doing their best to help.

Unfortunately, we can only see our regular registered patients, if you haven’t been seen at Lyme Bay Dental Practice recently you will have to find another dentist or ring NHS 111 if you live in England, Northern Ireland or Wales


Each appointment will be 30 mins long & if we are unable to complete everything needed in this time frame we may have to ask you to re-book another appointment. This is to ensure we minimise patient to patient contact in the surgery and to maintain social distancing.


  • Please phone and cancel your appointment if you or anyone in your household are showing any signs of coronaviru s –
  •         A high temperature
  •         A new, continuous cough
  •         A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
  • You will receive any email from us with some information – please ensure this is completed and returned prior to your appointment
  • Before you depart for the practice, we ask that where possible, you have already visited the lavatory, are hydrated and have brushed your teeth as this is a facility we can NOT offer at this time.
  • Please ensure a high standard of hand hygiene
  • To minimise risk, please ensure you attend your appointment on time and alone, unless you require assistance or are supporting a child or someone vulnerable.
  • We are encouraging card payments only so where possible, please do not arrive with cash


  • When you arrive, the doors will be locked, so please ring the doorbell or call us to let us know you have arrived and either stay in your car or outside of the practice (whilst maintaining good social distancing)
  • Please ensure you are wearing a cloth face mask or other face covering when entering the building and keep this on until asked to remove
  • Once you are in the building you will be asked to sanitise your hands.
  • Our reception staff will be behind protective plastic screens, but this is for the safety of everyone and we have distance markers displayed in front of reception.


  • You will need to leave any loose belongings like your coat or bag in the designated box provided. Upon entering the treatment room, our teams will be wearing extra Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as in order to provide you with the right care and service, they cannot adhere to social distancing recommendations.
  • Naturally we are also ensuring that each treatment room is carefully cleaned and disinfected after each patient. You will be asked to replace your face cover before leaving the room.

 We can offer the following limited service

  • Tele-dentistry
  • Prescriptions/analgesics
  • Referral to urgent dental centre
  • X-rays
  • Non-surgical/uncomplicated extractions
  • Temporary fillings
  • Fitting and re-cementing of crowns and bridges – providing it doesn’t need adjusting
  • Certain denture procedures – i.e. easing
  • Hand scaling

Dental Common Concerns

With patients save at home and advice limited to the telephone, we have listed some questions and concerns our patients may have.

NHS England and the Department of Health have recently instructed all dental practices to establish a remote urgent care service during the coronavirus outbreak. Our practice has and will continue to provide telephone triage for our patients with urgent needs during usual working hours and wherever possible treating with advice, analgesics and/or antibiotics.we hope this will ease some patients concerns and help them manage their pain at home if possible.

Non-urgent dental care:

Bleeding gums

  • Broken/rubbing/loose dentures
  • Loose/lost fillings, crowns, bridges, veneers
  • Chipped teeth with no pain
  • Loose orthodontic wires.

Opening Times

The Dental Practice is open the following hours:


08:15 – 17.00


08:15– 17.00


08:15 – 17:00


08:15 – 17:00


08:15 – 17:00




New Patient Registration

Unfortunately we  are unable to accept new  patients.  

NHS Charges & Exemptions

Dentistry is one of the few NHS services where you have to pay a contribution towards the cost of your care. The information on this page explains what you may have to pay for your NHS dental treatment. These prices are correct as of 14th December 202

  • Emergency dental treatment – £23.80
  • Band 1 course of treatment – £23.80
    This covers an examination, diagnosis (including X-rays), advice on how to prevent future problems, a scale and polish if clinically needed, and preventative care such as the application of fluoride varnish or fissure sealant if appropriate.
  • Band 2 course of treatment – £65.20
    This covers everything listed in Band 1 above, plus any further treatment such as fillings, root canal work or removal of teeth but not more complex items covered by Band 3.
  • Band 3 course of treatment – £282.80
    This covers everything listed in Bands 1 and 2 above, plus crowns, dentures, bridges and other laboratory work.

Please Note:

That being repeatedly late for your treatment sessions or failure to attend appointments may result in the early termination of the course of treatment.

Not available on the NHS

The NHS will not provide cosmetic treatments such as teeth whitening, which you may want to make your teeth more attractive, but which are not clinically necessary. Even where treatment is clinically necessary the dentist will offer you a treatment option that is clinically appropriate. If you choose to have alternative treatment options then you will have to pay privately for these.

Any treatment that your dentist believes is clinically necessary to achieve and maintain good oral health should be available on the NHS.

You will not be charged for individual items within a course of treatment. Depending on what you need to have done, you should only ever be asked to pay one charge for each complete course of treatment, even if you need to visit your dentist more than once to finish it. A course of treatment is finished when your dentist considers good oral health has been achieved.

Exempt from NHS dental charging

  • You do not have to pay for NHS dental treatment if, when the treatment starts, if you are:
  • Aged under 18
  • Under 19 and receiving full-time education
  • Pregnant or have had a baby in the previous 12 months
  • Staying in an NHS hospital and your treatment is carried out by the hospital dentist
  • An NHS hospital dental service outpatient (however, you may have to pay for your dentures or bridges). Income Support
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Pension Credit guarantee credit
  • Universal Credit
  • A valid NHS tax credit exemption certificate or you are entitled to an NHS tax credit exemption certificate
  • A valid HC2 certificate

Partial Help

If your name is on a valid HC3 certificate, you may not have to pay for all your treatment. Checks are made on free and reduced cost treatment claims

You will not be exempt from paying because you receive: Incapacity Benefit, contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance, contribution-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Disability Living Allowance, Council Tax Benefit, Housing Benefit or Pension Credit savings credit, when paid on their own.

Medical conditions do not exempt patients from payment for dental treatment.

You will be asked to show your dentist written proof that you do not have to pay for all or part of your NHS treatment. You will also be asked to sign a form to confirm that you do not have to pay. If you say you have the right to free treatment when you do not, you may incur a penalty charge.

Dental Staff

Dr Paul Bester B Ch D (STELL)


GDC Number 71281

Special Interests: Paul has two children and most of his family live in the Canadian Prairies. His interests outside of dentistry include playing bass guitar in a local blues band, cycling, running, high altitude mountaineering and anything challenging.

You can also contact Paul directly via his email address

Additional Notes

Paul qualified as a dentist in 1989 at the University of Stellenbosch, just outside Cape Town.  He moved to the UK in 1996, working initially in Bedfordshire and then relocated to beautiful Dorset in 2003 where he set up the Kent House Dental Practice which merged with the medical practice in 2013 to form Lyme Bay Medical & Dental Practice.


Surgery Hours


08:30 – 12:30, 01:30 – 05:00


08:30 – 12:30, 01:30 – 06:30


08:30 – 12:30, 01:30 – 05:00


08:30 – 12:30, 01:30 – 05:00


08:30 – 12:30, 01:30 – 05:00

a man smiling for the camera

Head Dental Nurse

Miss Yasmin Chowdhury

Dip in Dental Nurse

GDC Number – 276800

Miss Linda McCarthy

Dip in Dental Nurse

GDC Number 279497

Louise Herring 

Dip in Dental Nurse

GDC Number – 115166

Beth O Connor

Dental Nurse

Jamine Hawkins

Trainee Dental Nurse

Angie Ellis

Dental Receptionist



The practice complies with Data Protection legislation and we make every effort to preserve patient confidentiality. We ask you for personal information to ensure that you receive appropriate care and treatment. For the practice to function effectively it is sometimes necessary for medical information about you to be shared between members of the practice team. It will be shared with others only to provide further medical treatment for you, e.g. from hospital services, or to enable you to access other services, e.g. from the social work department.


We aim to give a friendly and professional service to everyone who attends our practice. However, if, for any reason, our service should fall below our patients’ satisfaction, we take all complaints very seriously. If you would like to make a complaint regarding the surgery or the services we offer, please contact the Practice Manager, either by telephone or in writing, who will make every effort to respond to your concerns as soon as possible. All complaints will be treated as confidential.

Patient charter

We aim to treat our patients courteously at all times and expect our patients to treat our staff in a similarly respectful way. It is your responsibility to keep your appointments, inform us of your past illnesses, medication, hospital admissions and any other relevant details. Our patient charter is available in full at reception.

For further information on any of our policies, please contact the practice manager.

Disability and discrimination

We will provide care, now and in the future, to all our patients without discrimination and irrespective of patient’s age, sex, race, beliefs or special needs.  We expect that patients will show no discrimination towards other surgery users, members of the practice team or our colleagues in the NHS.

Violence Policy

The NHS operate a zero tolerance policy with regard to violence and abuse and the practice has the right to remove violent patients from the list with immediate effect in order to safeguard practice staff, patients and other persons. Violence in this context includes actual or threatened physical violence or verbal abuse which leads to fear for a person’s safety. In this situation we will notify the patient in writing of their removal from the list and record in the patient’s medical records the fact of the removal and the circumstances leading to it.

Registered Patients

Ww eould prefer all our patients to have 6/12 months check up unless otherwise agreed with your dentist. A patient will automaticly be removed from our list if they havent been to the surgery for over 3 years for a check up

Failing to Attend NHS Appointments Policy

As a dental surgery, we aim to be here when patients need us, to offer the best possible service we can and offer excellent availability for patient appointments in order to fit with the many and varied schedules of our patients. Every year we lose valuable surgery time with patients failing to attend or cancelling at short notice. This also makes it difficult for us to accommodate our patients in need of urgent treatment

We fully understands that everybody has busy lives and that sometimes circumstances beyond your control may mean that you have to cancel your appointment, are unable to get to your appointment on time or even contact us to advise that the appointment will not be attended. Likewise, there may be times when we have to cancel your appointment or are running behind time when you arrive for your appointment.

Under the NHS regulations we are unable to charge NHS patients who fail to attend their appointments or who cancel at short notice. A patient who fails to attend their appointment will be sent a letter/email/text (including this policy) on their 1st and 2nd missed appointment warning them that they could lose their NHS entitlement with us. In the event that a further appointment is missed, we will withdraw the offer of NHS treatment at this practice and we will remove you from our patient list.

Discretion may be used if there is a good reason for the appointment being missed.

This policy does not affect your ability to seek NHS care at another practice.

Text Reminder and Email Reminder automated system

Text and email reminders are available for all appointments.

All text messages and emails sent by our system are logged when successfully sent. It is your responsibility to check your text and email messages and to ensure that we are informed of any changes to your mobile phone number or email address.

Please note: text messages and email are sent out of courtesy, not necessity. It is your responsibility to turn up on time for an appointment. Failure of the text messaging system for any reason is not sufficient reason for failing to attend or turning up too late for treatment

Complaints & Feedback

Complaints Procedure

If you have a complaint or concern about the service you have received from the dentist or any of the staff working in this practice we hope that you will discuss them with the dentist, nurse or reception team at the time they arise and with the person concerned, or failing that please contact the Practice Manager, Mrs Sarah Hill. She will be happy to discuss the complaints procedure with you and try to deal with any concerns promptly.  It will be a great help if you can let us have details of your complaint as soon as possible and are as specific as possible about your complaint but if this is not possible please let us have the details within 12 months of an incident happening.

What we shall do

We shall acknowledge your complaint within 3 working days either orally or in writing, and offer to discuss the matter with you.  If you do not wish to accept the offer of a discussion, we will decide how to handle the complaint, based on the available information.  A letter will be sent to you setting out how the complaint will be investigated and the expected timescales.  We will aim to have looked into your complaint within 14 working days of the date when you raised it with us.  We shall then be in a position to offer you an explanation, or a meeting with the people involved.  When we look into your complaint, we shall aim to:

  • find out what happened and what went wrong
  • make it possible for you to discuss the problem with those concerned, if you would like this
  • make sure you receive an apology, where this is appropriate
  • identify what we can do to make sure the problem does not happen again
  • advise you of your right to take your complaint to an alternative body (see below)

We will provide a written response as soon as reasonably practicable after completing the investigation.

Please pick up one of our leaflets in reception

We hope that, if you have a problem, you will use our practice complaints procedure.  We believe this will give us the best chance of putting right whatever has gone wrong and an opportunity to improve our practice.  If you remain dissatisfied with the response to the complaint you have the right to complain to an alternative body. (see below.)

If you wish, you can choose to complain to any of the following organisations rather than to the practice:

Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

By post: The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, Millbank Tower, Millbank, London SW1P 4QP

By email:


By telephone: 0345 015 4033

NHS Commissioning Board- NHS England

By post: NHS England, PO Box 16738, Redditch, B97 9PT

By email: with ‘For the attention of the complaints manager’ in the subject line.

By telephone: 0300 311 22 33 (Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm, excluding English Bank holidays


In person: at any Citizens Advice Bureau in Dorset, Poole or Bournemouth.
By telephone: 0300 111 0102

By post: Healthwatch Dorset, Freepost BH1902, 896 Christchurch Road, Bournemouth, BH7 6BR

By email via the webite:

The Independent NHS Complaints Advocacy Service

By telephone: 0300 343 7000

Via their website:

A free confidential service that advises and supports people who are complaining about the NHS.  The service is independent of the NHS and is currently provided in Dorset, Poole and Bournemouth by Dorset Advocacy.

Independent Mental Capacity Advocate (IMCA) Resource

By telephone: 0845 3891762

IMCAs are a legal safeguard for people who lack the capacity to make specific important decisions: including making decisions about where they live and about serious medical treatment options. IMCAs are mainly instructed to represent people where there is no one independent of services, such as a family member or friend, who is able to represent the person.

The Care Quality Commission

By phone: 03000 616161

Via their website:

You can contact the CQC if you are unhappy with a service even when you don’t want to make a complaint.

A Big Thank You!

NHS Friends and Family