35 years in road safety comes to an end as Alan Kennedy retires

09.52 | 28 March 2022 | | | 11 comments

Alan Kennedy retired from his role as executive director of Road Safety GB on 31 March.

Alan’s long and varied working life began offshore in the oil industry, before he embarked on a career in road safety that would go on to span more than 35 years!

His first road safety post was as a part-time motorcycle instructor in South Tyneside in 1987. He then worked his way up through the local authority road safety officer ranks and gained the Diploma in Accident and Safety Management in 1994, before becoming senior road safety officer in South Tyneside in 1995.

Alan then moved to Durham in 2000 to manage the council’s road safety section. Following a lengthy spell as chair of Road Safety GB North East region, Alan served for four years as national chairman (2009–2013), before joining Road Safety GB on a full-time basis in 2014.

Throughout his career, he has been dedicated to the road safety profession and in particular to raising the profile and structure of road safety education.

Alan has been instrumental in developing Road Safety GB over the past 13 years.

His key achievements include: development of the Road Safety GB brand; establishing charity status in 2011; overseeing the incorporation of the Institute of Road Safety Officers with the launch of the RSGB Academy in 2013; and setting up the Road Safety Apprenticeship scheme in 2020.

Also under his stewardship, in 2016 Road Safety GB’s success in improving the quality of training for road safety professionals, through the Academy, was recognised with a Prince Michael International Road Safety Award (PMIRSA).

Then, in 2018, Road Safety GB International was formed, which has generated strategic alliances and training opportunities in international markets.

In order to raise the profile of Road Safety GB in the international arena Alan visited and presented to governments in Poland, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and South Korea.

Alan Kennedy, RSGB


He also met with many international organisations here in the UK – including the Japanese government and the Hong Kong Police Force – to promote Road Safety GB’s work, and the road safety work of the UK government.

Philippa Young, chair of Road Safety GB, said: “Alan has achieved so much during his road safety career and has established Road Safety GB as a respected organisation and recognised brand.

“On behalf of all his colleagues at Road Safety GB I wish him a long and happy retirement.”

Talking about his career, Alan Kennedy said: “It just seems like five minutes ago when I walked onto the training ground to start my first session as a motorcycle instructor. Yet, 35 years have passed and I am now preparing for retirement (of a sort).

“Working in road safety has clearly formed a significant part of my life, and to be fair, road safety does become part of one’s life.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my career through the good times and the bad, and thankfully there have been many more good times. Over the years, I have been involved with so many people of all age groups and backgrounds, and have worked with many fantastic professional people.

“The growth of Road Safety GB has clearly been a team effort and I have been so fortunate to have great people around me to get the organisation where it is now. My deep gratitude goes out to each and every person I have worked alongside over the years.

“The world of road safety is a wonderful place and I wish each and every one of you a very happy and prosperous future.”

James Gibson, who succeeds Alan as executive director for Road Safety GB, added: “Alan is certainly a hard act to follow.

“There is no doubt that many lives and countless injuries have been saved through collective work across the sector and Alan has had a significant part to play in this.

“He should be very proud of his important contribution.”

While Alan is retiring from the post of executive director he won’t be completely disappearing from the road safety scene, as he has agreed to stay on in a part-time capacity to continue to deliver training courses for the Academy.

Never one to rest idle, Alan also intends to use the additional time he will have to develop his ‘third career’ as a qualified clinical hypnotherapist.



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Order by Latest first | Oldest first | Highest rated | Lowest rated

    Good luck Alan worked with you on oil rigs Graham Metcalf came across you on Top Gear great sense of humour a great friend to have Remember always having fun with you and Dave Keys the Medic on Brent Alpha 1979 RESPECT.

    Graham Metcalf, Sunderland
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    Thank you to everyone for the wonderful comments. I am overwhelmed by them all, and the wonderful emails, and social media messages I have received. I am truly grateful. I have enjoyed working with each and everyone of you and wish you all the best for the future. Right now I am focussing on hypnotherapy and playing ‘live’ home grown music. Oh and looking after our new-ish family member Lewie the Cockerpoo!

    Best wishes to you all.

    Alan Kennedy, Durham
    Agree (1) | Disagree (0)

    Those days at MANCAT seem no time ago. Thank you for all your work and to coin a phrase, thank you for the music too! Cheers.

    Saul Jeavons, Waresley
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    Alan, my best to you for your retirement ( although I will believe it when I see it).
    It was a genuine pleasure working with you over the years and thanks for all your hard work in moving us in RSGB to a really good place. True, it was teamwork but your influence will be long remembered.

    Ron Paterson, Horsham
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    Alan thanks for all your hard work and dedication over the years, you have always been professional, friendly and supportive.
    I’ve done 41 years in road safety in various forms and roles in April and whilst there are many colleagues over the years who I’ve met who claim to have made a difference, you are one of the few who genuinely has, making GB a safer place, raising the profile, importance and professionalism of road safety ETP/officers in this country. Thanks, and enjoy your retirement 🙂

    Steve whitehouse, Shropshire
    Agree (4) | Disagree (0)

    All the best Alan for a long and happy retirement

    Bill Smith, Glasgow
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    Huge congratulations to you, Alan, for all your years of service to road safety and RSGB. Your enthusiasm and can-do attitude made working with you a very enjoyable experience and I’ll always remember the RSGB Conferences where your band provided the entertainment! Good times. Wishing you all the best for the future and to James Gibson, every success in your new role.

    James Evans, Deal
    Agree (3) | Disagree (0)

    Working with Alan was a privilege and a great learning experience for which I am most grateful. The evolution of Road Safety GB into the modern, professional and responsive organisation it now is, is the realisation of Alan’s vision and foresight. The Academy is growing apace and widely respected both here and abroad.
    What a set of achievements. Yes, they are all a team effort but they would not have happened without Alan.
    Enjoy your (semi) retirement Alan, well done and thank you.

    Honor Byford, Wensleydale
    Agree (3) | Disagree (0)

    Well done Alan on all your achievements and good luck to James as he takes over the baton. All the very best for the future.

    Theresa Casbard, Hoddesdon
    Agree (6) | Disagree (0)

    A wonderful achievement and a wonderful friend and colleague whose experience, wisdom and humour will be missed.

    ian Edwards, Doncaster
    Agree (7) | Disagree (0)

    Congratulations Alan – thanks for all your work over the decades

    Paul Copeland, Beverley
    Agree (6) | Disagree (0)

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