Friday night’s match between Moseley and Bristol will be the first at Billesley Common since the untimely passing of the man who did so much to make it his club’s new home.
Tradition dictates that the Red and Black banner will fly at half-mast to recognise the unstinting contribution Alan Adam made to the club.
However, just for once it might be worth considering a departure from the norm and keeping the Moseley colours at the top of the pole. After all, no-one flew Moseley’s flag quite as relentlessly as Alan.
Many people at the club knew him better and for longer than I did but as a member of the local press – and one who has covered the ebbs and flows of Mose for the last decade – I can say that he rarely missed an opportunity to press the Red and Black cause.
Actually hammer, might be a more suitable verb than press. I found it impossible to leave Alan with a shred of doubt about his vision of the future or his certainty that, long journey though it may be, it will see a return of the glory days.
Indeed a couple of years ago when I sought to play devil’s advocate and suggest the sun had set on the club’s time at the top, within a split second his complexion matched the colour of a Moseley shirt, the air was blue and I was not required to speak for another 30 minutes.
On less animated but no less intense occasions, he would ask my opinion on various issues, though I was never convinced it counted for much other than being used as ammunition with which to assail me if I’d turned out to be wrong.
That said, he was always welcoming, as generous as anyone in the club – standing there without a post-match pint was almost as risky as questioning Moseley’s place in the rugby hierarchy – and free with his time. If I needed five minutes over the phone, I’d always get 20, often when he was in Canada.
It would be erroneous to say his voluble nature didn’t sometimes rub people up the wrong way but to characterise his approach as simply sledgehammer to crack walnut, would also be wrong.
He could be canny when the situation demanded and St Peter better watch out because boy, can Alan run a gate and car park.
He was just as comfortable picking litter as representing the club at national forums and whether you’re still bruised from your last encounter with him or not, his commitment and dedication could never be questioned. Without him Moseley would not exist in today’s form.
Of all the tributes paid since his death the most common phrase has been ‘Moseley man’. No one who ever met him could have doubted that – nor the fact that Alan would lower Moseley’s colours for neither man nor beast.
The Moseley clubhouse he did so much to provide will be a quieter and less interesting place without him.