Into Independence Management Team


Alan Norton has worked at Ministerial level in UK and have been instrumental in developing disability services in the UK and Europe. Through nationally recognised Training delivery, Access Audits and Consultancy services to health organisations and professionals Assist UK was in constant touch with service providers at the cutting edge of the disabled and older people sector. He has developed training programmes, access audits and other consultancy services to healthcare and commercial organisations, working closely with manufacturers, healthcare professionals, universities and disabled people.

Alan is an experienced and charismatic leader with established credibility as an expert in independent living. He has had a successful business in industry and has brought his commercial acumen into his numerous roles in the third sector.

He is now a respected champion for disabled people with a first class network of expert associates. He marries a passion for improving the lives of disabled people with realism and a pragmatic approach to delivering practical solutions to difficult challenges for people managing a disability. As a result he is respected and valued by the disabled community, policy makers and politicians.

Alan has been a wheelchair user since childhood. He and his wife, also a wheelchair user, live very fulfilling independent lives in the UK and in their international travels; making full use of assistive technology.

Key Achievements

  • A national profile as a role model and leading authority on the challenges facing disabled people in living independent lives.

Contributor to policy development within:-

  • Department of Health
  • Department of Transport
  • Department for Work and Pensions
  • The Centre for Architectural Built Environment
  • Transport for Greater Manchester
  • Greater Manchester Police – equality and accessibility issues
  • Community Legal Service
  • 10 years as advisor to the UK Department of Transport on the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee (DPTAC)
  • Advisor to Civil Aviation Authority (CAA)
  • Member of the judging panel for Accessible Britain Challenge for the Department for Work and Pensions
  • Current industrial advisory roles include designs for a new accessible taxi, and an accessible toilet module for trains
  • Chief Executive of Assist UK, the umbrella organisation for the UK network of Independent Living Centres
  • Disabled Peoples’ Champion for Capita PIP Benefits Assessment programme
  • Previously Deputy Chairman of Disabled Motorists UK (DMUK)
  • Leader of EU-funded project to set up Independent Living Centre in Malta. Training 80 local staff.
  • Over 30 years in senior financial role with a multi-national industrial manufacturer. Taking early retirement at 50 year old.
  • Trustee of Independent Living Manchester – Independent Living Centre



Steven has over 40 years’ experience in industry including 20 years at Marketing Director level with one of the UK’s leading manufacturers of disability equipment. He has established and worked with an international network of disability equipment manufacturers and retailers across Europe, North America, Middle East and Japan.

Steven was responsible for the launch of household consumer products in various international territories for a leading pharma/agro chemical company.

He steered a UK chemical manufacturing business in the move away from declining industrial markets into expanding healthcare opportunities.

  • UK expert on the International Standards Organisation drafting new standard for bathroom equipment for disabled people.
  • Graduate and Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (FCIM)
  • Master of Business Administration (MBA)
  • Chairman of Assist UK, the umbrella organisation for the UK network of Independent Living Centres


SHAHZAD TABASSUM MBA (Director – Business Development)

Shahzad has over 17 years’ experience in business development and organisational development and training. He is a qualified Prince2 Practitioner. Shahzad is a Master of Business Administration (MBA) and has successfully managed and implemented government projects at regional and national levels.

  • Develop and implement business strategy
  • Design, develop and implement training programmes
  • Commercial relationship management
  • Multi-site team management
  • Organisational learning development
  • Procurement
  • Budget and financial management
  • Health and safety compliance
  • Quality management