So the 13-year old had to content himself with sailing on a lake because it was war time and he knew the gun battery in Lytham St Annes, where he lived, would open fire on any unauthorised boats on the sea.
Little did he guess he was embarking on a hobby that would bring him face to face with royalty when he was presented with a RYA Lifetime Award.by HRH the Princess Royal, President of the RYA
Allan was nominated for his award by members of Ribble Sailing Club and was selected as a winner by the Awards panel for his lifetime of service to boating.
It was only three years after his first outing in a boat that Allan had started to contribute in a country just starting to recover from the Second World War. At the incredibly you age of 17 he became Commodore of Fairhaven Sailing Club. Soon he was also involved with the local Sea Cadets and the RNLI.
With another young man he helped the Sea Cadets grow and even build their own local headquarter building.
He also joined the Ribble Cruising Club and has continued to contribute to all three organisations, and in the 1980s he becameChairman of the management committee of three local sea cadet units.
Allan has been heavily involved in the management of the Ribble Cruising Club for over 35 years, 15 as Secretary, five as President and nine years as Trustee, during which time he has ensured it has been run effectively. When key issues have threatened club life he has always been there, first into the fray with the RCC burgee on hand.
He has maintained a high level of focus with the local MP, local Council and all government agencies, set up to manage maritime affairs along the region's coastline.
When Lytham jetty was carried away in a gale and the local council were unable to fund its replacement, Allan was able to arrange a joint effort that saw the rebuild of the jetty, without which the RCC could not launch their dinghies nor the RNLI launch their Inshore Life Boat.Allan leads from the front and continues to do this, despite now being in his 80s.