Ex-Football League player to become first Space Champion

PCC Matthew Ellis meets new Space Champion Adam Yates.

Space 2018 is delighted to announce its first ‘Champion’ – former footballer Adam Yates.

The ex-Port Vale defender was sworn in as the inaugural Space Champion after meeting Staffordshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Ellis.

The 35-year-old, who made more than 400 Football League appearances, will represent Space at several events during 2018, including this Sunday’s Staffordshire Police Force Open Day at the police HQ in Weston Road.

Mr Ellis introduced the Space programme to bring together public, voluntary and private sector organisations to help nurture, support and guide Staffordshire youngsters.

And, new for this year, is the lowering of the age band for certain activities, from 11 to eight-years-old*, with Mr Ellis providing a substantial increase in funding for the programme.

With the World Cup due to kick off in a few weeks, Space 2018 hopes to deliver several football-related activities for soccer fans throughout the county, making Adam the ideal ambassador for the scheme.

He spoke of his joy at being the first Space Champion.

‘It’s great to be named as the first “champion” for Space,’ said Adam, who also appeared for Morecambe, Burton and Leek Town during his 16-year professional career.

‘Space is a fantastic opportunity for youngsters to be fully engaged and active during the summer holidays. I’m looking forward to what should be a rewarding and fun summer.’

PCC Matthew Ellis said:

‘We are absolutely delighted to have Adam on board as the first Space Champion.

‘Success for the youngsters is seen by the smiles on their faces, opportunities experienced for the first time and the things they’ve learned.

‘Space 2018 will continue with its aim of increasing skills, improving health and wellbeing, and creating opportunities for young people to take part in positive activities to make communities safer. Having someone of Adam’s profile championing Space can only be positive for the scheme.’

NOTE: *Age restrictions apply to certain activities – please check with organisers for more details.