"I now have a new lease of life, an income, and bunch of new friends."
A former night receptionist in a hotel, he spent a year receiving treatment to arrest his sight deterioration, but then found that his many job applications were being rejected.
Now, a unique partnership between Sheffield City Council and Remploy, the UK's leading provider of employment services for people with disabilities and health conditions, has led to employment for Stuart. The initiative, called the visual impairment routeway, is recording unprecedented success in the city, and Stuart is one of those to have benefited.
"I was in contact with the RNIB, and they pointed me towards Remploy," said 45-year-old Stuart from Woodhouse. Remploy operates a specialist employment services branch in Sheffield, and Stuart signed on for a course of support which included improving his CV, practice with his interview techniques, and using special equipment for job searching, installed at the branch as part of the initiative with Sheffield City Council.
Stuart is now working for City Facilities Management, the company that cleans Asda's stores to professional standards. He takes great pride in being part of the team at the store in Chapeltown, Sheffield, and thoroughly enjoys his new job.
"Being without work meant I whiled away the hours at home, with no real purpose," added Stuart. "I now have a new lease of life, an income, and bunch of new friends. The council and Remploy have supported me in a really practical way, and I am determined to repay them by doing a good job."
Stuart Allan, who has significant sight impairment as a result of diabetes and related laser treatment, was beginning to lose hope that he would work again.
Find out more about visual impairments with our A-Z of disabilities