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Alan Harrison's career included being a Lecturer in Gastronomy at Surrey University, Director of the Edinburgh Hotel School at Crewe Toll, an Open University Tutor/Examiner/Course Co-Director within the Post-Grad course in Educational Management and Head of Faculty of Community Studies at Canterbury College. He was also a University Dean in France and Switzerland in 1992. Other foreign activities saw Alan as a tourism specialist and academic adviser in fifteen countries. Some of his publications are on his Gastronomy website. Retired and living near Oxford UK, he is available as a speaker on some topics with this website. He is also available as a discussion leader on topics within science here.
Trained/employed in Hotel Management and Tourism, Alan’s career and interests over the last twenty-five years are summarised above. He is a gastronome within the food-writer interpretation of that word.
He wrote the first text book on gastronomy for use in universities and colleges in 1982 and another text book on why we eat what we eat in 1986.
He created a website on gastronomy in 2009 and now it is the largest site available on that topic. His latest book on the history of food and drink of Scotland and its hospitality is on the website.
All his papers and articles relating to food and drink are also on the website. He is convinced that Britain is digging its grave with its teeth and that is clear on his website. His oven-ready books, Health Education and Food and Education Across the Board await a call from a publisher Parts of the former are already there.
Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin (1755 - 1826) was a French lawyer and politician, and gained fame as an epicure and gastronome. He was the first extensively to write about gastronomy and is considered to be its father. Alan is a member of the International Wine & Food Society (IWFS) and was a regular contributor to its Food & Wine journal.
The Society was founded by André Simon (1877 -1970) who was a wine merchant, gourmet, and prolific writer about wine. Hugh Johnson describes him as “ .. the grand old man of literate connoisseurship ..”. On his website, Alan proposes that André Simonmore should replace Brillat-Savarin as the leading modern figure in gastronomy. In 1992/3, Lucerne and Strasbourg were introduced to Alan’s university “town and gown” lectures which focused on the life of Brillat-Savarin.
Alan was a member of the International Wine & Food Society [IWFS] from March 2009 until his wife died in 2017. He wrote for its journal here and his first article was published in June 2009.
Travelling widely in their motorhome, Alan and his late wife enjoyed consumer gastronomy in many pastures new. For numerous worthwhile-causes and in social settings, Alan can be heard playing his bagpipe. He wrote a bagpipe tune and song for the 2007 Scouting Centenary here and a bagpipe tune for the UK Jubilee here. He also made a non-musical contribution to the work of worthy causes.