Our Team

a true passion for piggies.

Why do we do what we do? Because we all LOVE guinea pigs! Our crack team of piggy experts, contributors and support staff are ALL guinea pig keepers and totally mad about piggies! Together we know more about guinea pigs than most people know about their nearest and dearest. We go to sleep thinking about guinea pigs, we wake up thinking about them. Our nostrils find fresh hay tantalisingly tasty and we buy more fresh vegetables in a week than your average vegan restaurant. Some say, we can even speak to guinea pigs… but put it this way – we’re passionate about guinea pigs!


Alison Byford

Your Editor

Alison Byford is a lifelong lover of guinea pigs who had a dream to create a resource for Guinea Pig owners, whatever their level of knowledge. Her sheer determination, blood, sweat (and tears) plus a wealth of skills saw the magazine born, flourish and progress with each issue. Alison’s passion for GPM brings together not only the diverse group that make up the team but the wider readership.

Wiebke Wiese-Thomas

GPM’s Piggy Whisperer, Forum Moderator, GPM Rescue & Adoptables Co-ordinator.

Wiebke Wiese-Thomas is GPM’s Piggy Whisperer and Rescue & Adoptables Co-ordinator and has been with us from virtually the beginning. She is well known and respected across the piggy world and is a leading expert on guinea and herd behaviour. She is an extremely knowledgeable and experienced keeper as well as a forum moderator for The Guinea Pig Forum. She has the curious ability to be able to ’speak’ guinea pig…

Katharine Frayling

West Country Cavy Sanctuary, RHA, Experienced Keeper, Experts & Medical Feature Co-ordinator.

Katharine Frayling is one of GPMs longest serving Experts and has co-ordinated all our medical features. In the past Katherine was the trainer for the British Association of Rodentologists in the UK. She is a Rodent Health Advisor and runs the West Country Cavy Sanctuary. Also an experienced keeper, Katherine has around 30 sick guineas in her care at any one time.

Abigail Edis

Expert, Qualified Registered Specialist Exotics Species veterinary nurse, Foundation degree in vet nursing, Certificate in Nursing Exotic Species. Kept and rescued for many years.

Abigail Edis is relatively newer Expert to the team but has made a significant contribution over the last year, advancing knowledge in the care and welfare of guineas. She is a Qualified Registered Specialist Exotics Species Veterinary Nurse, with a foundation degree in vet nursing and holds a Certificate in Nursing Exotic Species. She has  also kept and rescued for many years, and is devoted to getting the knowledge ‘out there’.

Sue Tate

Manager of Cavy Corner Guinea Sanctuary, Contributor, Front-line Distribution Engineer.

Sue Tate is Manager of Cavy Corner Guinea Sanctuary, and has been a long time contributor; initially with first-hand Rescue Stories, and now with her own column. Cavy Corner is an award-winning charity and one of the UK’s leading and largest rescues. Sue fights tirelessly for better education and welfare policies, and is exceptionally knowledgeable in all aspects of cavy care. 

Agata Witkowska

Expert, BVM BVS MRCVS. Veterinary surgeon currently studying towards Certificate of Advanced Practitioner in Zoological medicine. Experienced keeper.

Agata Witkowska BVM BVS MRCVS, is one of our veterinary surgeon Experts. She is currently studying towards a Certificate of Advanced Practitioner in Zoological medicine. In addition Agata is an experienced guinea pig keeper.

Dr Alison Wills

Senior Veterinary Lecturer at Hartpury College, Resident Expert, Experienced Keeper.

Dr Alison Wills isSenior Veterinary Lecturer at Hartpury University, and a long-serving Expert. Alison is in the unique position to bridge a gap between GPM and veterinary students and has made it possible for GPM to publish some of the first research studies ever conducted on the behavioural aspects of guinea care. She is also an experienced keeper.

Dr Stephanie Hammond

Resident Expert, RHA, Manager of Wheekaway Small Animal Boarding, Experienced Keeper.

Dr Stephanie Hammond Rodent Health Advisor and Research fellow, is a long standing Expert with GPM. She has written several articles on different aspects of guinea care – as well as scouting social media for interesting stories. Stephanie is the Manager of Wheekaway Small Animal Boarding and one of the first to introduce webcam for visiting guinea pigs. She is also an experienced keeper.

Kim Halford

Expert, BVetMed MSC, MRCVS. Non-Practising Veterinary surgeon, Masters in Animal Behaviour and Welfare, Manager of Welfare Matters.

Kim Halford BVetMed MSC, MRCVS, Masters in Animal Behaviour and Welfare. Currently a non-practising veterinary surgeon, Kim has worked with DEFRA and other leading bodies in animal welfare and medicine, as well as the manager of Welfare Matters. Kim has written many of our medical articles, introducing up-to-date and little known veterinary knowledge to the general population.

Catherine Alliss

Owner with 20+ year’s of experience.

Catherine Alliss is an experienced keeper of 15 years. One of our first subscribers, she has specialist interests in promoting the health and welfare of guineas. She has previously written for GPM, including a recent article on ovarian cysts.

Erica Evans

Manager of Little Pip’s Guinea Pig Rescue.

Erica Evans is Manager of Little Pip’s Guinea Pig Rescue and many years of experience. Currently completing MSc is in Animal Welfare Science, Ethics and Law.

Elf Lyons

Comedian, Piggy Lover, Columnist.

Elf Lyons, hmmm… what can we say about Elf. Comedian, piggy lover, woman. Oh, and only a nominee for the Edinburgh Comedy Award for the Best Show in 2019. Our newest columnist, Elf Lyons has a rollickingly lively view on the world and a sparkling writing style, as she documents her relationship with her beloved guinea pigs – Ian McCulloch, Clara Cupcakes, Pazuzu, and Badger. Not to be missed!

Saskia Chiesa

CEO & Founder of Los Angeles Guinea Pig Rescue.

Saskia “Guinea Pig Lady” Chiesa is the CEO & Founder of Los Angeles Guinea Pig Rescue – the largest rescue in the world. Her experience and knowledge is impossible to summarise but we are so delighted to have her on our team!

Andrew Millham

Works with Essex Wildlife Trust and is an Environmental Science student.

Andrew Millham is a nature writer and environmental science student. He works with Essex Wildlife Trust in schools and at Belfairs Woodland Centre with the Education team. He has written about folklore for several popular magazines.

Karolina Pierianowicz

Cartoonist of Kakazuma Comics. Observer of guinea pigs.

Karolina Pierianowicz is our regular cartoonist and is from Poland. Karolina has the wonderful gift of being able to interpret the unique personalities of her guinea pigs and then turn them into caricatures. Her comic strips are full of the subtle piggy behaviours that we can all recognise.

Charlotte Thornes

Graphic Designer and guinea pig colouring book creator.

Charlotte Thornes is a Creative Director with an eye for composition and pixel perfection. As Graphic Designer for the Guinea Pig Magazine and a guinea pig colouring book creator, she makes things look top-notch. In addition to being a lover of all things design, Charlotte also enjoys the company of Guinea Pigs – the more the merrier!

Mark Harrison

PA, House-Elf, Poop Sweeper.

Mark Harrison is personal assistant to the editor, Alison. Mark is on hand to help or hinder as the mood takes him. An experienced piggy keeper he is the main carer for all the GPM HQ guineas and is responsible for all their needs (while the editor just swans in when the piggies are all clean, fed and in their pyjamas!). He modestly compliments Alison’s methodical systems and procedures, with disorganisation, chaos, and confusion!

Rik & Helen Cridland

Company Directors. Co-founders of HayPigs!®

Rik and Helen Cridland joined our team at the back end of 2019. They are co-founders of HayPigs!®, a company that designs and produces award-winning enrichment toys and feeders for guinea pigs and other small animals. They have been good friends with our editor, Alison, since 2017 (when HayPigs!® was launched) and are now delighted to have joined the team at GPM as Company Directors. Together, they bring a wealth of skills and experience in both business and guinea pigs(!). We are excited to have them both on-board.