Fatboy Slim goes large in Middlesbrough

Darlington and Stockton Times: DJ Fatboy Slim, aka Norman Cook, visited the Myplace youth centre in Middlesbrough, encouraging young people to volunteer overseas DJ Fatboy Slim, aka Norman Cook, visited the Myplace youth centre in Middlesbrough, encouraging young people to volunteer overseas

DJ Fatboy Slim who has performed across the world confirmed his former group, The Housemartins, will not be reforming when he visited a youth centre to encourage young adults to volunteer overseas.

The house music maestro, whose real name is Norman Cook, was at Myplace in Middlesbrough urging youngsters to help tackle global poverty through sport.

As Coaching for Hope patron, he launched the government-funded International Citizen Service scheme in Teesside, which is giving young people aged between 18 and 25 the opportunity to volunteer for 10 weeks in Africa, Asia or Latin America.

After the Brighton & Hove Albion fan was introduced to the Coaching for Hope charity which uses football to help deprived young people, he travelled to the Mali project in 2009, when he took part in an HIV awareness programme with street children.

“Giving anyone the opportunity to see these projects at work really puts life into perspective - I don’t think anyone can come away from that unaffected. The chance to do this and develop yourself should be grabbed with both hands.”

Mr Cook, 50, famous for hit including Right Here, Right Now and Praise You, played a set in the early hours of this morning at the town’s Empire nightclub.

As well as listening to the experiences of people who have already taken part on the scheme through volunteering and development charity, Skillshare International, he listened performances by local rapper, DJ Carter and beatbox musician Dan Richmond.

Mr Cook admitted he hadn’t sampled the infamous late-night takeaway delicacy the chicken ‘Parmo’ on his whistletop visit to Teesside and said he would not be performing again with his former band.

“There will not be a Housemartins reunion. We said we would only get back together if The Smiths reformed and that’s only going to happen if the Royal family abdicates.”

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