Alan was born in Wootton Wawen, a small village 6 miles from Stratford-upon-Avon in Warwickshire, in 1957. He was taught bridge when he was five, by his two brothers, both of whom are more than 10 years older than he is. He continued playing at his secondary school ( King Edward VI Grammar School - the most famous ex pupil being a certain William Shakespeare) and at Stratford-upon-Avon bridge club until he left for Manchester to study for a degree in Mathematics in 1976.
On arriving at the bridge clubs he discovered that he knew nothing at all about the game, and whatever he did know was wrong! The University Bridge Club and Manchester Bridge Club had the likes of John Holland, Gary Hyett, Michelle Brunner et al around and so it was a steep learning curve. Fortunately he was lucky enough to play with and against them on a regular basis and despite doing so, emerged from University 3 years later with a degree (though God knows how) and a bridge game resembling competent.
His serious partnerships have been, in chronological order, with Anil Ruia, with whom he won the National Pairs and reached the final of the Gold Cup; Howard Melbourne, with whom he played his first Camrose match; and Gary Hyett, who has been his regular partner for in excess of 10 years and with whom he won the Gold Cup in 1997 and 1999, played for Great Britain in the very last European Championships that country played in (Malta 1999) and has played 7 Camrose matches. Alan rates his best bridge memory as finally winning the Gold Cup in 1997 after 20 years of trying and being the losing finalist twice.
More recently, Alan has taken up official positions in the England Women's team. He has been the coach in one Olympiad (Maastricht 2000), 2 Europeans (Tenerife 2001, Salsamaggiore 2002), 2 Venice Cups (Paris 2001, Monte Carlo 2003) and captain in one Olympiad (Istanbul 2004) and one European (Malmo 2004). During this time the team has won one Gold and one Bronze at European Level (Tenerife 2001 and Salsamaggiore 2003).
Whilst not wandering around Europe coaching or captaining Alan works as a middle manager in one of the largest Further Education colleges in the country. Other hobbies include eating out, cooking and the theatre.
A few years ago Alan married his long-standing partner (in the non-bridge sense).. Monica plays no bridge at all, a fact that both of them are daily grateful for. However, Monica is a frequent visitor with Alan to International events.
Last updated: August 2013
Major International Appearances
European Championships: 1999
Camrose Trophy Selections: 1991 1998 1999 2001 2003 2004 and 2005
Gold Cup Winner: 1997 and 1999
National Pairs winner: 1985