Following on from the incredible Spice Girls Exhibitions in 2018, Alan Smith-Allison has written an autobiography – “The Secret Diary of a Spice Boy” – detailing the rise and fall of the world’s largest ever music exhibition.Go behind the scenes of the exhibition and read about where the fascination came from, amassing an amazing c3,500 items, developing the concept of staging the exhibition and making it a reality. From the glitz and glamour of press interviews and VIP opening nights through being held hostage and attacked to financial ruin.The SpiceUp Exhibitions were quite simply amazing, working with other collectors and designers, meeting thousands of other Spice Girls fans old and new. But nobody knew the trial and tribulations of running the company – the 15 hour days, 7 days a week for nearly 2 years, the hardball contract negotiations, the company’s that let us down, the stress of it all that physically and mentally broke me and the team to the spectacular collapse of the company culminating in bailiffs in my house trying to take my whole collection off me.“The Spice Girls released Wannabe in 1996 when I was 15 years old and the unhappiest I have ever been in my life. Everyone has teenage angst, everyone has hormones going crazy but not everyone allows it to get so dark and there were times where my teenage childhood couldn’t have got any darker. Failed suicide attempts, self-loathing, self-harm, lashing out and generally in a constant unhappy state of crisis.”The Spice Girls saw me through this extremely difficult time with their ‘Work hard, try hard and you can achieve anything and be anybody you want to be’ attitude as well as ‘Don’t be afraid to be different, be yourself and do what makes you happy’.Little did I know that they would once again help me through another extremely dark time in my life 20 years later #mentalhealthawareness.For over 20 years my obsession with the Spice Girls and collecting their costumes and memorabilia led to the creation of the world’s largest ever music exhibition. A passion project involving many other just as passionate collectors and designers created a dream and then that dream became a business with detailed plans for a world tour.Little did I know this passion would lead to my financial ruin leaving other companies thousands of pounds out of pocket and ultimately to me having to sell my beloved collection I had amassed over 22 years.Read about it all in “The Secret Diary of a Spice Boy”.