Alan Hinkes (OBE, no less) has just been appointed as the first 'ambassador' for the Youth Hostels Association (England and Wales).
In his newly created role Hinkes, famously the only Brit to have climbed all 14 8000m peaks, will act as the brand's spokesperson and promote YHA informally in the fields of outdoor adventure and education.
Caroline White, Chief Executive of YHA (England and Wales) explained the decision behind the appointment:
'We particularly wanted to ensure that ambassadors understand and had a connection with YHA so that they can speak authentically about us. Alan was the natural choice. He is well respected and a role model in the field of outdoor adventure. His role as ambassador, I believe, will open many doors for YHA.'
'His personal accomplishments, coupled with his charitable work with youth-focussed and outdoor charities, are an excellent fit with YHA's mission to inspire all, especially young people through new experiences of adventure and discovery.'
And Alan Hinkes commented:
'YHA was an influence in my early hill walking trips and staying in Youth Hostels helped me get out into the hills for adventure. In my role as ambassador I hope to encourage more people to use Youth Hostels and get out into fresh air in the hills. Exercise is important and Youth Hostels are well-placed and well-priced for a convenient stay in the countryside, for families and people of all ages.'