IT WAS late motherhood that made former architect Alison Fearns consider a complete life change at the age of 48.
Today she is to be found behind the counter of a children’s bedroom shop, running her own business instead of working for Kirklees Council.
However, if it was not for the arrival of her only daughter Lucy, now six, Alison suspects she might never have decided to go it alone.
But a demanding career in planning policy and research and what she describes as “the responsibilities and expectations of 21st work culture” meant she found it difficult juggling work with her home life.
“I missed out on all the daytime nativity productions, the special assemblies, and once Lucy went to school it meant having before and after school care so she missed out on after school activities,” said Alison.
Trained at London University and in private architectural practice for several years, Alison joined Kirklees as a surveyor 19 years ago and was latterly a partnerships and procurements manager working in regeneration.
It was the quest to find a child-sized bed for Lucy two years ago that gave her the idea of launching her own business selling bright and cheerful children’s room furnishings.
“My husband thought I was mad thinking about setting up a business in a recession, but the council had started to announce its austerity measures and I’d started to make plans about what I’d do,” said Alison, who lives in Stocksmoor.