Alan worked for many years in the vibrant sustainable, local food sector in Manchester and loved it, gaining a wealth of knowledge and experience in food activism and working with some great people. But he knew he wanted more. In 2016, Alan made a decision to change his life. Through making that journey (involving a 600km hike and 100km sea kayak) he began to view life differently and in a more empowered way. It was about taking control – and also – letting go control. He began training with Way of Nature UK which took him on a journey inwards, connecting him to nature through 24 and 72 hour solo vision quests in wild surroundings, as well as other deepening practices.
Alan and his family moved to Italy in early 2017 for more adventures and, 18 months later returned to the UK to live in the West Yorkshire hills where he works part time in local food, writes, teaches meditation, walks and lives with his family.
Alan likes to think that we can do it ourselves and with a little guidance it is possible for anyone to have a deeper experience of life, learn to guide themselves and stay open to beauty and the simple things in life. Through writing his blog and shadow integration work, Alan is always evolving his passion for communication, self-exploration and holding space for others. He has been doing mindfulness training with the Mindfulness Association for the past couple of years and now teaches the excellent 8 week Mindfulness Based Living Course. He has developed a passion for liberating the mind from oppressive thoughts and mind states and ideas through this brain training practice and will work on combining this with the naturally liberating elements of nature connection work in the coming years.
Alan has played drums in bands for many years and enjoys getting involved in music projects. He is currently writing a book based on his 2016 journey which will be released through Irish publishing house Book Hub Publishing, in autumn 2021. The ripples of that journey still expand throughout his life.
He regularly sleeps out in the hills in a bivvy bag, enjoying the connection and solace that brings, open to whatever comes.
“Alan was a great guide, through the group meditations and sessions we were unknowingly well primed for the extended sit spot. His ideas were thought provoking but in an open, calm way rather than an overly instructive way, which I think helped us develop our own practice and deepen our personal experience” – Vikki – Under The Surface Retreat, Hebden Bridge, Oct 2020
“I would recommend this work to anyone looking to rebalance their lives, to step out of the bustle of the modern world and really look into themselves, with nature as a teacher and witness, to rediscover who they really are. Alan is a skilled guide who is open to using his own personal experiences as a way of teaching what can be achieved with this work. he held the space with calmness and set a pace which me and allowed more space and time for growth and reflection. The Clearing has already had a profound effect on my life and has led to me looking at things with fresh eyes, able to focus more on whatever is important to me.” – Paul, The Clearing
“Alan is a good talker and an even better listener. He has that calm presence of a good guide and leader that the basics will be taken care of allowing us participants to relax and focus on the activities on hand. Had a hugely enjoyable time in Alan’s company.” – Tim, Way of Nature Mens Retreat
“I had a great time with Alan. He was very supportive and brought a sense of calm into the group. His exercises gave me a moment to reflect on what motivates me and clarified a direction I want to take things in life. I also really enjoyed his experience with music he brought in and the stories of his past adventures.” – Kai, Way of Nature Mens Retreat