Clinical Staff

We have two principal clinicians, Austin and Sarah, who are members of the British Acupuncture Council:

Austin Austin Acupuncturist
MBAcC, BSc(Hons)Acupuncture

Austin studied Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) acupuncture at Lincoln University and graduated with a first class honours degree, he is a published author and member of the British Acupuncture Council. After regularly attending The Sean Barkes Clinic over 3 years for observations and professional development Austin finally joined the team as a full time practitioner in 2009.

Austin has had a varied career working in film and television, as a project manager and as an antiques dealer. He has first-hand experience of care within the NHS and a long-standing interest in philosophy and holistic living, all of which have lead him along the path to becoming a qualified TCM practitioner. Austin is passionate about TCM and believes that it offers an alternative to Western medicine’s pharmacological and dualistic approach. He considers that the holistic nature of TCM, its emphasis on treating the individual and the time taken to truly understand the person being treated and their patterns of illness is a natural and effective way of healing. When TCM is combined with Western medicine then wellbeing is improved and often a reduction in the need for costly pharmaceuticals and consultations. Austin believes that as the NHS continues to accept and benefit from the practices of TCM then a more effective and personal health care will emerge where the patients come first, not their illnesses.

Sarah Ray Acupuncturist
MBAcC, BSc(Hons)Acupuncture

 With an elder brother a scientist and an elder sister an artist, Sarah feels she is the product of a balance of the two.

Sarah qualified from the University of Lincoln in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science degree in acupuncture and soon after set up practice in Grimsby. After two years in Grimsby, commuting started to take it’s toll and so she decided to move practice closer to her home in Lincoln, during which time she also worked as a home help support worker for Age Concern. In 2011 she took a year’s hiatus from full-time clinical practice in order to support her partner in the management of a local real ale pub. Then, a few months of travelling through Europe from Romania to France playing live music recharged her batteries before settling again in Lincoln.


Having previously worked alone as an acupuncturist, Sarah has welcomed the opportunity to practice in the mutually supportive environment of The Sean Barkes Clinic where her knowledge and skills are continually improved.

Sarah is keen to promote self-help through diet and lifestyle choices, and Traditional Chinese Medicine is an excellent way to help her achieve that goal.

Clinic Founder

Sean Barkes
MBAcC, BA(Hons), BSc.(Hons) TCM Ac., Clin. Ac. (China)


Sean’s interest in Chinese Medicine started with an interest in Martial Arts in 1985. In the Orient, martial arts and healing arts are often learned together. In 1995, after training in oriental medicine whilst living in Japan, Sean returned to England to complete a degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine at the University of Westminster in London. After this, he completed a post-graduate internship at various hospitals in Hangzhou, China. Whilst in China, Sean also trained in Tuina, a Traditional Chinese form of massage. In order to add to his skills, he subsequently studied Chinese patent herbal medicine, again at the University of Westminster, with one of the country’s leading Chinese herbalists. Sean has taught Chinese remedial and therapeutic exercise (Chi Kung) and T’ai Chi Chuan since 1995.

Sean has also completed specialist training in Paediatric acupuncture. Being a father of three himself, he became interested in the potential for using Acupuncture to treat babies and children, who are needled entirely different to adults in that the needles are not retained; the needle is inserted and removed immediately as a child’s Qi is so easily stimulated. (detailed biography)

©2020 by The Sean Barkes Clinic