The Beer Week Planning Committee

Leigh Norwood (CGBW Chair)
Day Job: Owner of Cheltenham’s specialist beer shop – Favourite Beers

Favourite Beer(s):
Anything dark and strong in both alcohol and flavour but particularly keen on Belgian quadruppels or barrel aged Imperial stouts

About Me: I opened Favourite Beers in 2010 having met, and been impressed with, many of the people in the local beer industry whilst organising the beers for the Cheltenham Beer Festival (now the Cheltenham Craft Beer and Cider Festival) – which I have been helping to run over the past 12 years to raise funds for Cheltenham Samaritans. Since opening the shop, I have written several beer related articles for the press and beer related magazines and I became a member of the British Guild of Beer Writers in 2012. I have also been a regular judge at the International Beer Challenge and numerous other beer festivals. In 2016 I instigated and organised the successful first Cheltenham Beer Week and even contributed to the creation of the collaboration beer brewed for the week.

I don’t treat working at Favourite Beers as a job – in my view I have now retired from my old Software Engineering Career and I am just doing my hobby – a hobby where I can take my dog with me!


Tony Lucas (CGBW Press & Media)

Day Job: Advertising and Design Copywriter

Favourite Beer(s): Titanic Plum Porter, anything from Arbor, Deya, Salopian or from Belgium. Best beer of all time – Salopian Gingersnap (4.7% ginger wheat beer) from late 90’s/early millennium.

About Me: A beer drinker since 1974 (when beer really was 13p a pint). I am active in CAMRA as a branch official and as a CAMRA trained Bar Manager. Moving to Cheltenham exposed me to so many great venues and events. I discovered new beer styles, fresh ideas in brewing, the revelation of modern keg and even canned beers! I believe in supporting and promoting great beer, regardless of the dispense method.

Shandin Rickard-Hughes (CGBW Marketing Lead)

Day Job: Director & Tour Guide, Brewerism Brewery Tours

Favourite Beer(s):
Sours and dank & juicy pales are my jam at the moment. Azacca, Vic Secret, Mosaic and Citra are my stand out hop varieties

About Me:
I moved to Cheltenham from Oregon in 2014. I was really into the craft beer movement from the moment I turned 21, and I began spending what little money I had on quality brews and beer festivals. I made my first professional foray into beer here in 2015, when I took a summer job working at the Cotswold Brewing Company running brewery tours. There I met Theo Freyne and jumped on board the DEYA team, helping out in the taproom. In June 2016 I launched my own beer business, Brewerism Brewery Tours. Now I spend most of my time talking about and tasting beer, which is great fun. I love travelling and always make it a priority to check out the beer scene in each new city and country that I visit. Collaboration, quality and education are important to me so I’m stoked to be involved in Cheltenham & Gloucester Beer Week, bringing good beer to the people. Cheers.

Steve Knibbs (CGBW Treasurer)
Steve discovered a love of proper beer about ten years ago and has become irritatingly obsessed with drinking it ever since. Many things make him happy but sitting
in a pub with a fabulous beer and chatting with friends is difficult to beat. Especially if you serve him a hop-packed, fresh, double IPA.


Phil Davies
Day Job: Graphic Designer & Mac Support

Favourite Beer(s): Mr. Pink & Limelight

About Me: The closest shop to my house is Favourite Beers. I hang around in there a lot.



Chris Martin (CGBW Website Co-ordinator)
Day Job: IT Project Manager

Favourite Beer(s): Juicy Double IPAs and Complex Imperials

About Me: A late starter in the Real Ale world, 2006 and it was Hop Back’s Summer Lighting that broke me! (Still a great beer today, I urge you to look it up. Spending plenty of time in the USA both for work and holiday I quickly found my beer style, Hoppy DIPAs! Holidays in the USA are usually a Fly/Drive concept with many brewery visits on the way.

A good life tip – When visiting Alchemist Brewery in Vermont (Home of Head Topper)  there is a Ben and Jerry’s factory less than 5 minutes away with tours to keep the wife/rest of the family happy !

The lack of Hop Bomb beers in the UK several years ago got me into Home Brewing. I use the hobby to create beers and styles that you struggle to find in the South West. Currently in the FV – A  6% Earl Grey IPA and Currently conditioning in bottles a 10% Imperial Russian Stout ! – Its going to be an interesting Christmas this year…

On top of this, I am active on Untapped and have been on the organising committee for 2 large beer festivals in the Gloucestershire Area for the last few years.