Ellis Brigham Mountain Sports, Chester

The Chester store stocks a good selection of all products and brands that are adjusted seasonally, so you’ll find ski and snowboard gear in the shop from September until April. Located on Northgate in the centre of Chester, the shop also houses a specialist The North Face outlet.

  • Phil Hooles - Store Manager

    Skiing Expert

    Store: CHESTER

    Phil started skiing at the age of 8, and since then has attained a high level of experience from skiing mainly in Europe in North America. He got involved with ski racing at an early age, and from there went on to take the esteemed French ski instructor qualification.

    He has also completed two full seasons in Tignes, and now enjoys riding backcountry and ski touring.

    Favourite Place/Resort:

    Tignes. “It’s the resort I know best from my seasons, but because of the glacier you can ski all year round, and in the winter the resort is huge.”

  • Simon Bryant - Assistant Manager

    Travel Expert

    Store: CHESTER

    Simon’s love of travel grew out of his university studies. On a fieldwork placement during his Geography course, he travelled throughout Kenya, meeting and living with the Maasai. After graduating, he journeyed through Northern India, rail touring from Delhi to the mountains of Darjeeling with his wife-to-be.

    Simon's intrepid streak has taken Simon through Europe, Russia and within the Arctic Circle. His love of travel is often intertwined with his love of all things bicycle. As a self-proclaimed ‘bike snob’, he has toured Southern Ireland on his single-speed and shadowed the mountain stages of the Tour de France.

    Simon recently participated in the Welsh Ride Thing - a three day bikepacking challenge involving tough biking, navigation and wild bivvying amongst the mountains of Wales.

    Favourite Place/Resort:

    India. "India is such an awesome country to visit, with friendly people and great food."

  • Steve Bailey

    Snowboarding Expert

    Store: CHESTER

    Amongst the snowboarding community, Steve needs no introduction. One of the most celebrated riders in the UK, he’s been snowboarding for 23 years, and as a professional for 21 years, during which time he has been caught in an avalanche, and won 10 British titles.

    Needless to say Steve is a font of knowledge on all things snowboard, he’s visited most resorts in Europe, the States and Canada, and he features annually in the Snowboard Asylum catalogue.

    Favourite Place/Resort:

    Chamonix. “I lived there for 10 years, so this has to go down as my favourite place to snowboard.”

  • Jack Balthazar Kent Lewin

    Climbing Expert

    Store: CHESTER

    Chester’s resident Climbing Expert Jack first started to learn the ropes while studying for his Outdoor Education degree at the University of Cumbria in Ambleside. Since then, Jack has expanded into sport, trad and winter ascents and has taken his climbing all over Europe, from Chamonix in the French Alps to Scandinavia.

    In summer 2012, Jack spent two weeks trad climbing in Norway and ascended the legendary Svolværgeita, a distinctive two-horned pinnacle above the beautiful Lofoten Islands. Yet despite his expeditions on the Continent, he insists his heart lies with the rugged hills of North Wales.


    Jack has gone on to complete his SPA training and this year intends to head back to the Alps to carry on challenging himself and his climbing.

    Favourite Place/Resort:

    Maeshafn, UK. "North Wales – it has to be. My favourite climbing spot is a Clwyd limestone quarry called Maeshafn. Some great routes in there."

  • Thomas Wilson-Parry

    Climbing Expert

    Store: CHESTER

    Cestrian expert climber Tom had been traipsing around hills and mountains for 18 years before he turned his attention to their more vertical features. Now highly experienced on the rock, he focuses on bouldering and sport routes, and generally enjoying the wealth of climbing that nearby North Wales has to offer.

    Favourite Place/Resort:

    Dyserth, North Wales. "Dyserth is my favourite climbing location. Nice and local. My favourite crag is beside the waterfall there – a large overhang with tranquil water flowing through. It’s a perfect place to chill at the end of a summer’s day."

  • Kirstie Mason

    Trekking Expert

    Store: CHESTER

    Setting off on the right foot, trekking Expert Kirstie took her very first steps on Scotland's rugged and beautiful Isle of Skye. A self-proclaimed 'outdoor hardgirl', Kirstie relishes the extremes, and loves to head out on the trail when the weather is unleashing blizzards, heat-waves or torrential rain. This gives her a fantastic insight into the performance of kit and gear requirements in the great outdoors.

    In the summer months, Kirstie spends a lot of time at her static caravan in the Val d'Anniviers area of the Swiss Alps, and last summer spent time trekking and mountain biking through Eastern Europe. When she's not braving the elements, Kirstie is a budding illustrator and writer, taking inspiration from her alpine wanderings.

    Favourite Place/Resort:

    Isle of Skye, Hebrides. "The mountains are untamed and wild. Its a stunning isle to visit anytime of the year. Every mountain is worth conquering as the views are aewsome from the top!"

  • Bekki Dunnington

    Snowboarding Expert

    Store: CHESTER

    Snowboard expert Bekki Dunnington (née Snowball - sorry, we had to include that!) took up riding while studying at university. After Bekki's first trip to the Austrian Alps in 2008, she was hooked on the white stuff and had quickly spent most of her student loan funding trips to her local indoor slopes to hone her skills.


    Bekki gets out to the alps at least once a season, and this year aims to focus on her park riding.

    Favourite Place/Resort:

    Jungfrau, Switzerland. "My favourite place is easily the Junfrau region. I love snowboarding under the view of the Eiger's North face!"