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Richard Hernaman Allen


Richard Hernaman Allen spent his early years in Loughborough, Leicestershire, got a degree in History from Merton College, Oxford (1st class, Honours), and joined Customs & Excise (C&E) as an Assistant Principal (fast stream trainee) in 1970. After working on the introduction of Value Added Tax (VAT), he was Assistant Private Secretary to Maurice MacMillan (Paymaster General at the Treasury) and Harold Lever (Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster).


On his return to C&E in 1975 on promotion to Principal, later Assistant Secretary, he worked on VAT, excise duties, customs, planning, budget work, legislation and EEC and other international negotiations, before being promoted to the Board in 1990 where he was responsible for indirect tax policy (1990-91), finance and IT (1991-4), compliance operations (1997-8) & personnel & finance (1998-2001). He also worked as Director in the Department of Social Security (1994-7) on disability and counter-fraud policy and Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (2001-5) on corporate services.


After early retirement, he worked in various jobs as a consultant, including in Georgia and Kosovo,  reviewing major government projects and providing training for Parliamentary Select Committee hearings, while completing a long novel , “Through Fire”, which he began in 1976. He lives in Petts Wood, on the outskirts of London, and has a flat by the sea in Deal, on the East Kent coast. He divides his time between writing, running, writing and playing music and grandparenting. He has a wife, Vanessa, two daughters, Jo and Kat, and two grandsons, Joshua and Jasper.


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