27th June 2024

Obituary: Andy Allen

CTSI is deeply saddened by the passing of a kind and compassionate friend and colleague.

By JTS Staff
Journal of Trading Standards' in-house team
His warmth, compassion, and relentless dedication will be deeply missed
Andy was an incredible colleague and friend to all who had the pleasure of working alongside him
In all of my years of employment, Andy Allen was undeniably the most amazing boss that I ever had the privilege of working with

Andy Allen, who passed away unexpectedly on 9 June, was a much loved and highly respected part of the family at CTSI, where he led the UK International Consumer Centre (UKICC).

Andy Allen: 1968-2024

Andy, who joined the Institute in 2012, was a passionate advocate for consumers. Hard-working and dedicated to helping people, he single-handedly built up the UKICC over the past decade, ensuring not only its relevance and effectiveness but also its survival against the backdrop of Brexit uncertainty and sweeping budget cuts.

A proud Cornishman, Andy was born in 1968. During his early life he worked as a fisherman in Newlyn, and his lifelong love of the sea was apparent from the swallow tattoos on his hands – traditional good luck symbols promising safe passage home.

Much loved
Andy’s tenacity and perseverance led him to become a mature student and gain a law degree, which he put to good use by helping to support and advise consumers.

He began his consumer protection career with a variety of roles at Cornwall County Council Trading Standards, before taking up the reins at the Consumer Direct contact centre for the South West region.

Upon joining CTSI, he took charge of all of the Institute’s commercial services and sat on the Consumer Codes Approval Board, in addition to leading the UKICC (and the UK European Consumer Centre, as it was previously known), through a time of upheaval.

Andy’s compassion, commitment and good humour ensured he was highly popular with his colleagues, and his warmth and kindness inspired many.

CTSI Chief Executive, John Herriman, said: “Deeply passionate about consumer protection and the Trading Standards profession, Andy’s knowledge, boundless enthusiasm and, above all, his mischievous sense of humour will be greatly missed by everyone who experienced it first-hand. Andy was not only a consummate professional, but also a friendly face and huge source of support to many of his colleagues, who are all devastated by his passing.

“Andy was, indeed, so much more than just a colleague to those at CTSI and to many people throughout the consumer protection landscape: he was a friend and a mentor to many. His warmth, compassion, and relentless dedication will be deeply missed. Andy has countless friends all around Europe, and we will always remember Andy for the positive influence he had on our work life.”

Kerry Nicol, External Affairs Manager at CTSI, worked with Andy throughout his time at the Institute. She said: “Andy was an incredible colleague and friend to all who had the pleasure of working alongside him. He was a passionate and diligent man who always had buckets full of ideas and would always give up his time to contribute with his expertise and knowledge.

“Andy built the UKICC Consumer Centre from the ground up, which showed just how determined he was to protect consumers. One of Andy’s many strengths was building meaningful relationships, and that has been proven by many colleagues from all over Europe who have left heartfelt tributes for him at this very sad time.

“Andy leaves a hole at CTSI that I believe will never be filled. My thoughts are with Louise, Andy’s partner, who is also a CTSI colleague. May you find strength in knowing just how much Andy meant to us all. Rest in peace Andy.”

In a tribute of its own, the European Consumer Centre (ECC) Network described Andy as “a kind, considerate, sweet and exceptionally dedicated advocate for consumers”.

Juanita Headley worked closely with Andy as a Consumer Advisor at the UKICC. She said: “In all of my years of employment, Andy Allen was undeniably the most amazing boss that I ever had the privilege of working with. I loved him like a friend and respected him greatly because he was fair, flexible, and maintained professional boundaries.

“He saw the potential in myself and my colleagues, and was incredibly humble, not wanting any accolades or fanfare. Having a boss like Andy made me look forward to Mondays. I loved my job and knew that because of him, the UKICC would be my forever home.

“The team at UKICC and our partners at the ECC continue to mourn the loss of a dynamic, funny, hard-working, charismatic man who was wholeheartedly committed to the work of consumer advice. He left a lasting impression on us all and I believe that his memory will live on.”

Another of Andy’s UKICC colleagues, Harry Williams, said: “I am deeply saddened. Andy was not just a remarkable leader but also a mentor who has had a large impact on my life and career.

“I will forever be grateful for what he’s done for me and for giving me space to grow. My condolences.”

A keen animal lover, Andy will also be missed by his cats Pinot and Bob, and his dog Buddy. He also kept chickens and was well known for trying to save even the smallest insect in distress. In recent years he took up gardening, and developed a passion for growing fruit and vegetables.

Andy leaves behind his beloved partner of ten years, Louise, and his wonderful family.

A GoFundMe campaign to pay for Andy’s funeral expenses and his safe passage to his final resting place in Penzance beside his late mother, can be donated to here.

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