Beyond the Edge is owned and run by Chris and Alex. A small team of other instructors assist.

Alex Ekins

Alex Ekins has been climbing, instructing and leading expeditions internationally for over 25 years. A holder of the Mountaineering and Climbing Instructor Award (MCI), Rock Climbing Instructor Award and the Winter Mountain Leader Award, Alex is one of the UK’s most experienced trainers and assessors having directed over 100 Rock Climbing Instructor courses and a significant number of Hill and Moorland Leader Awards and Mountain Leader Awards. As a rock climber he has climbed on six continents.

Alex is also recognised as one of the worlds best adventure photographers and photojournalists with images published in The Times, The Guardian, Le Monde, The Economist, Rock and Ice, The Financial Times, Climbing, Summit and National Geographic. Alex was the photographer on the historic Randall and Whittaker ‘Wideboyz’ 1st ascent of Century Crack in Utah.

Chris Allewell has been working in the outdoors for over 25 years. This has been interspersed with senior management and CEO roles in training and development both within the UK and internationally.  He has over 40 expeditions to the Greater Ranges and has pioneered new routes in the Himalaya and New Zealand Alps. His greatest claim to fame is multiple first ascents on the popular cliffs of the Falkland Islands!

Chris has spent a significant amount of time living remotely in mountains, deserts and jungles around the world and, having climbed and instructed on every continent, brings a huge diversity of experiences to his work.  He is also a member of Edale Mountain Rescue Team. Chris is passionate about the environment and a keen amateur naturalist. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and holds a plethora of outdoor and management qualifications.

Hati grew up exploring the Peak District on foot and fell down the climbing rabbit hole about 9 years ago, moving to Fontainebleau and then the South of France before deciding that the weather was far better in North of England and returning from whence she came.

Despite having climbed in many beautiful destinations around Europe, Hati is happiest when in an off-width (an awkwardly sized crack climb), although there is something to be said for a big day out in the mountains. 

When not in an off-width, Hati enjoys running and walking in the Peak District and beyond. She is also an avid wordsmith and has written previously for Alpkit and Her reviews, musings and advice now help populate the BtE blog.

Oli has been climbing, mountaineering and trekking for over 20 years following an early winter introduction in Norway through school. Whilst those initial telemark techniques are now a lost concept, the experience set him on a path to becoming a professional mountaineer.  He has climbed in the USA, the Alps, Russia and Scandinavia and across Britain. Although happiest at height battling the elements, rock and ice, he regularly thinks nothing of a weekend blast south to the boulders of Fontainebleau or beyond. That said, his heart lies with the gritstone crags in the Peak. 

His career path has somehow woven its way from Structural Engineering, Teaching, Design and installation of climbing walls and now happily settled as an outdoor professional.

Oli currently sits on the member’s council for the BMC as Constituency Councillor and represents the BMC membership who are also on a Mountain Training pathway.  

Kerry runs the office alongside Hati and is probably the first person you’ll speak to at Beyond the Edge. She has been an active climber for over 20 years, travelling and climbing extensively in Europe, the USA and Australia. She has also enjoyed the opportunity to climb and trek in places such as Morocco, Mauritania, Ecuador, Nepal, Peru, Georgia and Russia

As well as many years of office work, Kerry has lead groups all over the world and has just Antarctica left to visit to round off all 7 continents. She has also found the time to become a national level climbing competition judge, and is progressing further with an IFSC course later this year.

Kerry enjoys gardening, fell running and photography, she’s an absolute nerd with old maps. She doesn’t enjoy tennis, squash or eating mushrooms (you can’t have everything!)


For a lot of our courses we base ourselves at The Sir William, a comfortable hotel in Grindleford in the heart of the Peak District.
Our courses generally start with a chat over a complimentary tea / coffee and cover any theory and watch instructional videos in the warmth of our training room before heading outside and putting things into practice in the great outdoor classroom on our doorstep.