Alan has over 14 years experience working in the UK design industry. Alan’s professional design career began at Raffo Design Associates, a leading UK design consultancy. Alan quickly progressed to Studio manager and then Design Manager whilst experiencing the diverse range of projects and pace of work only available through a successful design consultancy. Experience was gained on a range of projects from huge trucks, trains and tractors, to tiny children’s toys and micro machines working on minute internal technical detailing. In this time the Alan was lucky enough to work on several award winning projects including work for Nomix sprayers. The Nomix sprayer was selected for a British Design Award and subsequently exhibited by the Design Council.
Alan then had the opportunity to work on establishing a fledgling spin off consultancy Phollio Design. From this he was able to gain more commercial experience and see the inner commercial workings of a design company. To help in this Alan completed an entrepreneur course to help establish the businesses while forging links through the local chamber of commerce.
Alan was subsequently offered a place at what was then a small Leicester based Design Consultancy, Hodges and Drake Design. Alan accepted the position and helped to grow this company building and growing its own product manufacturing capability. Alan worked on products that gained a further two Design Awards and saw work exhibited in the Design Museum and the Millennium Dome. Alan worked on design projects for companies such as Boots, JCB, Nestle, Mattel, Hasbro, Cadburys, BA, and the Royal Mail. He has gained experience in a very broad range of projects everything from office furniture, drum kits, bikes, toys and sports equipment. It is this range of experience that he finds can draw on; bringing real world design experience as the course and department develop designs to tackle issues as broad as designs against terrorism, flood relief, design for social change, developments in sports technology and designs against crime.
Alan has gained extensive teaching experience and taught on all but 3 modules in the Design Products range of courses. His particular interest is in teaching the design process with a real world design ethos and user centred focus backed by design for manufacture. In this time at De Montfort University the course has developed and grown into a School of Design where Alan plays a critical role in providing high quality support to students as well as being instrumental in the growth of both post-graduate and graduate programmes.
Alan, in a partnership with two other designers, creates his own products when possible and this has seen lighting exhibited in a touring National exhibition and the development of commercial products.