Improbable Fiction section of Alan Ayckbourn's website is both supported by and dedicated to Richard McArtney.

Richard and I first met in 2000 at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, when I was working on the box office and he was appointed Box Office Manager. Over several years, I came to appreciate his friendship and learnt much from him which would help me later in my professional theatre career.

He is one of the gentlest, most honest and caring souls I have ever had the privilege of knowing. His support and love of his friends and family shines through and his commitment to them is something I have always admired.

He is also a passionate Ayckbourn fan and an extremely accomplished artist whose designs for posters for Alan Ayckbourn's plays deserves a wider audience. Together with John Cotgrave, he co-founded the Dick & Lottie theatre company, based in Huddersfield. This company - in both amateur and professional guises - is second only to Alan Ayckbourn's home theatre - the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough - for the different number of Ayckbourn works it has staged.

I consider myself very lucky to have Richard as a friend and truly value his friendship.

Simon Murgatroyd