Alan was born in Cheshire but went to school in North Wales and in so doing, managed to play rugby for both counties as well as the United Provincial Hospitals against the Combined London Hospitals. He studied dentistry at Cardiff, they being the first dental school to offer him a place and joined their first ever year in July 1968 consisting of just 22 students. In 1974, after hospital and teaching jobs, he went to the deep south of the USA and spent about fourteen months in South Carolina enjoying the “American experience”. This was helped by his being taken on regular Gulf Stream fishing trips by a great boss who owned a large cruiser. He then returned to Cardiff for a couple of years (playing in the first ever staff/student rugby match in 1978 which the staff won 16-6) before being appointed Senior Lecturer at Leeds.

Alan joined the Territorial Army (TA) after getting his FDS in 1971 and completed 33 years service; being promoted to the rank of Colonel in 1989. He spent six years as the Commanding Officer of an Evacuation and Field Hospital followed by time as a staff officer on the strength of HQ Army Medical Services TA. He has the distinction of being HM Queen’s Honorary Dental Surgeon and Honorary Colonel Commandant between 1996-2001.

Alan moved to Bristol in 1987 and in 1989 was persuaded by Marsh Midda to stand for the Head of School position. He spent three terms (twelve years) with great support from all the staff, especially Chris Stephens. His current hobbies include digital photography and woodwork – although he claims to be better at the photography! He has had a couple of pictures published in “Digital Photography” magazine and several in the local papers. He is currently Emeritus Professor, University of Bristol.