His knowledge and kindness were of great help when, as a new auctioneer with Andrew Grant of Worcester, I was putting together a Post-Impressionist sale in February 1989.
With one phone call he gave me advice on what to expect on the two Paul Henry paintings I had in the sale. One of these paintings, The Potato Diggers, fetched £26,000, a world record at the time. I had no idea that this price would be achieved. It was thanks to Alan that the record was made.
It also started my interest in Irish art, which has been with me ever since. I still remember the cheery voice on the telephone when we had a good Irish painting to auction: “Hi Philip. Anything for us?”