After training at St George's Hospital Medical School, London, Farthing qualified as a doctor in 1986. He became a member of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists in 1991, and a Fellow in 2003.
Farthing was appointed as a consultant gynaecologist at St Mary's Hospital in 1997, where he also became an honorary Senior Lecturer at Imperial College, London. He is a specialist in gynaecological cancer care, and an internationally recognised expert in the use of laparoscopic and hysteroscopic surgery.
Surgeon-Gynaecologist to the Royal Household
Farthing was separated from his first wife when he met BBC TV presenter Jill Dando. After Farthing's divorce in late 1998, the couple became engaged in February 1999, and were due to marry in September 1999.
On 26 April 1999, Dando was murdered on the doorstep of her house in Gowan Avenue, Fulham. Farthing rarely speaks about Dando's murder, with his last major interview given to the Daily Mail in June 1999. In the interview, Farthing said that Dando had made him breakfast at his then home in Chiswick, west London, before he left for work. Dando then went shopping before returning to her home in Gowan Avenue, where she was shot and killed. Farthing described how a week after Dando's murder, he found a reporters' notebook containing a draft of the speech she had intended to give on their wedding day. Dando's co-presenter on Crimewatch, Nick Ross, proposed the formation of an academic institute in her name and together with Farthing raised almost £1.5 million. The Jill Dando Institute of Crime Science was founded at University College London on 26 April 2001, the second anniversary of her murder.
- ‘FARTHING, Alan John’, Who's Who 2013, A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 2013; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2012 ; online edn, Nov 2012 accessed 4 Dec 2012
- "Mr Alan Farthing – Hospital Consultants Guide – UK Medical Consultant Directory – Dr Foster". Drfosterhealth.co.uk. Retrieved 23 December 2011.
- "Mr Alan Farthing". .imperial.ac.uk. Retrieved 23 December 2011.
- Bailey, Charlotte (26 Sep 2008). "Jill Dando's fiancé to be the Queen's doctor". The Telegraph. Retrieved 30 July 2013.
- Profile: Jill Dando, TV's girl next door
- "Jill Dando Institute of Crime Science". Jdi.ucl.ac.uk. Retrieved 23 December 2011.