By Brian Bennett

Kyle Hayes has put pen to paper at Ashington – with the ‘keeper making a return to the club he first signed for when he finished junior football.

For the past four and a half seasons, the 31 year old – a logistics and supply chain co ordinator – has been with Consett, who secured promotion at the end of the last campaign and who will now participate in the Northern Premier League Division One East.

Hayes said: “Due to the amount of travelling involved in the higher league plus family commitments, I couldn’t commit to playing at Consett. I spoke to manager Ian Skinner and things moved on from there but I was born in Ashington – who were my first club out of junior football under the management of Andy Gowens – so it’s good to be back.”

He continued: “The club have made a statement with the signings the manager has brought in and I’m looking forward to it. On top of that, I live at Blyth so it’s nice and close for me.”

Manager Ian Skinner said: “It all happened very quickly and was not something we had planned for because we were not looking to strengthen our goalkeeping department. However when Kyle became available and expressed an interest in joining Ashington the process speeded up somewhat. Kyle had a desire to play for us and lives down the road. He is another fantastic goalkeeper to add to our squad and adds competition for the ‘keeper’s jersey alongside Karl Dryden.”

Hayes is expected to make his second debut for Ashington at some stage tonight (Tuesday July 5), when the Colliers travel to face Alnwick Town in their first warm up match of the campaign. Kick-off is 7.30pm.