Kerry Evans, the Disability Liaison Officer for Wrexham AFC, was an emerging star of episode 3 of the Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney documentary 'Welcome to Wrexham'.

Kerry has been an active member at Wrexham AFC for over eight years, having been in a full time volunteering role for five years prior to the Hollywood stars' takeover.

The Leader caught up with Kerry to discuss the takeover, disability inclusion in football and, of course, her new found fame.

What does your role as Disability Liaison Officer entail?

I take care of anything which falls under the disability element at Wrexham football club. It’s a very positive role because I don’t make negative decisions and we’re only ever trying to make things better as a club for people with disabilities. I want everyone to feel like they can attend Wrexham football club. 

I meet lots of people and now we have 10,000 fans on matchdays there is an incredible figure of people that come to the games with all arrays of disabilities, including hidden disabilities, and they all come under my care.

READ MORE: Ryan Reynolds discusses his love for Wrexham AFC

When you heard about Rob and Ryan’s takeover, what was your reaction?

First I knew, I got a phone call from board member Spencer Harris asking to give my phone number to Ryan or Rob to contact me. Rob contacted me the night after and said they had discussed names of people that were important at the club and my name had come up and he was getting in touch to see if I would come on board and continue in my role if they took over the football club.

So this was before it had gone through?

This was before the zoom meeting with the potential new owners and the fans. In that meeting they mentioned my name 3 or 4 times, that I would continue at the club and all the good work we had done under disability.

What impact have the last few months had on club and Wrexham?

Huge! It’s as big an impact on Wrexham as a town, now city, as it is the football club. Their brief (Rob and Ryan) from day one was to make the town better and they wanted to do good. They want to make as big an impact on the community as on the success of the football club.

I must admit I myself was asking 'Why Wrexham?' prior to meeting them and the sale going through. But they are incredibly passionate about Wrexham, they are so sincere and their heart is in the right place.

In your time as the liaison officer what changes to the club have you made?

I am very passionate about what we are doing at the club and the difference we are making to the fans. Ryan and Rob were very much for that and wanted to back that.

We have so many disabilities to cater for. For some people all they need is a companion ticket to sit beside them in the stands. For wheelchair users we have three platforms available in the stadium – which I felt was really important, as it gives choice. 

READ MORE:Welcome to Wrexham: Episodes 3 and 4 - Club and community are the focus

We started up the quiet zone which brings in families with autism or other issues and families have told me they wouldn’t be able to visit if this wasn’t in place. For this we offer a quieter entrance, quieter walkway, accessible familiar face staff, blankets, ear defenders and sensory hub used by children and families in this area. 

On the back of our quiet zone [...] I organised autism friendly football sessions and also power chair friendly football –  as often those in wheelchairs, myself included, wouldn’t think they could play football. Now some people who come say it's what gets them up on a Friday, gets them through the week, as well as out of the house.

What did you think of the documentary?

The documentary up to now has been absolutely fabulous. It's very special to document our club and show people how special it is and the fact they have had leverage to be able to do that is amazing. I’m sure you’ll see more of my face as it goes on.

Have you been recognised when out in Wrexham?

Everyone from Wrexham knows 'Kerry from Wrexham football club'. I'll go into Wrexham and people are shouting 'Hiya Kerry', I seem to be a household name in Wrexham.

The Leader: Kerry Evans with her father at Wrexham game in Cardiff over 16 years agoKerry Evans with her father at Wrexham game in Cardiff over 16 years ago (Image: Kerry Evans)

It's surreal to be honest, I have relatives in Canada and friends in America and they are sitting and watching it as well. It's mad to think Wrexham football club is known worldwide.

READ MORE: Welcome To Wrexham: Declan Swans, Hamilton and goalkeepers on eps 5 and 6

I think at the end of the day the important thing is the football club, what’s going on on the field and getting out of this league. The documentary being a side to that is amazing as it's raising awareness of our community and our city.

With all of the amazing work you are doing, do you hope to inspire those in the community?

I’ve been in a wheelchair for 16 years and if someone said this is what’ll be happening in your life 16 years ago I'd never have believed them. I never thought I would volunteer, let alone go back to full time employment. So to start the journey as a volunteer and get offered full time employment and to now be holding down a full time job with an incredible amount of health issues, I am very proud of that.

I'd love to think that what I have done is inspiring someone to go on and live their dream.

Finally, what is it like working with Rob and Ryan?

Ryan and Rob have been fantastic with me, every time they come over they ask to see me at games. Everyone says 'oh my gosh it's Ryan and Rob' but now they're just people I work for, they're just bosses now. It's pretty special and it's pretty surreal.