Brigg open for business

Words by:
Glynis Fox
Featured in:
January 2024

With a range of independent shops, well established businesses and fascinating heritage sites, Glynis Fox finds that Brigg is well worth a closer look.

If you love visiting places which boast an attractive mix of the historical and the new, then you should put this vibrant market town on your list of destinations to explore.

Brigg in North Lincolnshire has an interesting history, lovely shops and a lively community whose members are served by numerous clubs and organisations.

The town itself features a variety of long-standing and newer businesses and, in today’s climate when the retail scene is continually evolving, it makes sense to go along and see what’s new.

Don’t miss the most popular shopping areas, which include Wrawby Street, Princes Street and the Market Place. The town also has some quirky courts and yards that are also worth dipping into.

Sticking with the shopping front, some of the best-known shops include Wallhead’s for country clothing, and Grandad’s Shed.

Both in Wrawby Street, Wallhead’s has been in business since 1897 and is the place to go for men and women looking for top branded town and country outfits.

Grandad’s Shed is not to be missed if you are searching for new furniture or accessories for your home.

Upstairs is The Loft Restaurant, so this is the ideal spot to take a break for a snack, lunch or a quick coffee.

If you are looking for a better night’s sleep, Brigg Beds in Princes Street could have the answer, as it specialises in all sorts of beds, from divans to those which come with electrical assistance.

Are you an avid bookworm who can’t resist getting stuck into a good story? If so, you’ll definitely be drawn to pop into The Rabbit Hole in the town’s Market Place, which has a large children’s section.

This quirky indie bookstore often hosts author events, so make sure you check out what’s coming up on its New Year calendar.

The Rabbit Hole is owned and run by Mel and Nick Webb, who have been trading for six years, and its fabulous selection of books are displayed across three floors.

Mel said: “We have something for everyone and titles to suit adults and children. More than 600 people have signed up for our newsletters. We also go into local schools and sell both National and our own book vouchers.”

Isn’t She Lovely? in the Market Place is a shop not to be missed for ladies looking for a stylish new dress, pretty accessories and handbags. With stock changing regularly, this is one where you are likely to find something very special.

There are even more fashion shops to attract ladies who “love to shop” – including Kennedi Boutique and Molly Browns.

Ready to treat yourself to a beauty treatment? Why not pop and see Paige Heap and nail technician Natasha Millson at Blush Avenue in College Yard.

Paige Heap said: “I started my business two weeks before Covid hit and now we have had the energy crisis and cost-of-living challenge. It was a struggle to start with but I decided not to throw in the towel.

“Now three years later, things are much better and I love what we are doing and I always try to keep my prices reasonable.”

The New Year is the perfect time to give your home a fresh look and Leya Buster Interiors and Home Fragrance, which moved into the Market Place last May, offers many wonderful temptations.

Owner Benjamin Jerrard opened in Brigg, having previously had a shop in Keelby, as well as offering online sales and having pop-up shops. Leya Buster is bursting with fabulous things, from candles to pictures, ceramics, floral decorations and much more.

“Brigg is a vibrant and busy town. I needed to move the shop and it is going very well. I particularly enjoy dealing with customers face-to-face, but we also have a website,” said Benjamin.

When it comes to looking after your eyesight, you definitely need to talk to a well-established business.

Brigg has some long-standing shops and among them is O’Brien’s – the oldest independent opticians in the town.

The practice is based in Wrawby Street, at the heart of the town centre, and focuses on offering a truly comprehensive eye-care and eye-wear service, ensuring that patients and clients are left reassured that their eyesight and spectacles are being looked after by optometrists (Opthalmic Opticians) and Optical Assistants.

O’Brien’s has served people from around the world and not just the UK. Staff regularly welcome clients from neighbouring Grimsby, Hull, Lincoln and Scunthorpe.

The practice carries out private and NHS eye tests and also provides a comprehensive contact lens fitting, supply and aftercare service.

Markets-wise the town hosts its Buttercross Market on Fridays, where visitors can find everything from fresh produce and flowers to clothing and jewellery. It also has a farmers’ market on the fourth Saturday of the month.

Historical attractions include the Angel Suite, which has served as everything from a courtroom to a theatre down the centuries. Today it is a community venue, hosting a variety of events, including weddings and cultural activities.

As we went to press, North Lincolnshire Council was being asked to agree a change of use for the Brigg Ice Cream Parlour in Brigg in Wrawby Street, to allow it to be used as a hot food takeaway.

Situated in the historic Angel building, the Heritage Centre offers plenty to interest people of all ages.

The centre is home to the Bronze Age Raft (known as the Brigg Raft) which dates back to 800 BC.

Excavated from the River Ancholme, it sets the scene for a fascinating journey because it charts the town’s growth as an important and influential marketplace.

Apart from this star exhibit, the centre offers educational facilities, hosting children’s craft sessions, as well as pop-up exhibitions, talks and events, including inspiring displays.

The Angel Building also plays host to the Community Hub/Library, Brigg Town Council and is home to the Courtyard Café and La Finca Restaurant. Rooms can also be hired in the Heritage Centre.

You don’t need to have green fingers to visit Brigg Garden Centre, just outside of the town on the Bigby High Road.

This large centre has everything the avid gardener could possibly want, from plants to essential equipment and pots and birdbaths.

There’s also plenty for the non-gardener to enjoy, from clothes to craft materials, furniture and gifts.

A large onsite restaurant serves a variety of hot meals and snacks.

If your eyes feel dry, irritated, or painful for most or all of the time, you are quite probably suffering from Dry Eye Disease (DED), especially if you continually feel “there’s something in my eye”.

One in five, and nearly 800 million people worldwide, suffer from DED. Over 50% of females over the age of 40, and over 90% of menopausal females, are thought to live with this condition. More recently, the condition has become more common in all ages and genders due to environmental factors, such as use of cosmetics and medications, excessive screen use, and underlying conditions such as blepharitis and Sjögren’s syndrome.

The front part of your eye is lubricated by a special moist film – consisting of a mucous layer nearest your eye; a middle, watery layer derived from your tear glands; and a third, outer layer, which is oily (lipid) and produced by special glands (the Meibomian glands) in your upper and lower eyelids. If your Meibomian glands are not producing enough oily film, the other lubricating layers will continually dry out and that is what causes the irritation and other symptoms of Dry Eye Disease.

This new therapy for Dry Eye Disease offered at O’Brien’s in Brigg is safe, non-invasive, painless – and doesn’t involve any eyedrops. It is known as Intense Pulsating Light (IPL) and Low Light Level Therapy (LLLT), though it may also be referred to as Photobiomodulation (PBM).

IPL uses thermal pulses to stimulate the Meibomian glands, and LLLT uses a specific wavelength of light to gently heat the eyelids. This revolutionary new treatment helps the Meibomian glands to work properly and therefore stabilises and improves the quantity and quality of the oily layer of the tear film. The treatment provides immediate relief from symptoms.

Dr Sheeraz Janjua is now providing this new treatment at his special clinics held regularly at O’Brien’s Optician in Brigg. He can be contacted on 01652 653595, or visit

Specialists in outdoor and country clothing, Wallhead’s Countrywear is a highly regarded family business which combines classic sporting brands with five-star customer service. Established in 1897 by James Blackburn Wallhead, this popular store in Wrawby Street, Brigg, is today run by fourth-generation Richard Wallhead, who is committed to offering a warm welcome with personal attention for both local shoppers as well as many who come from far and wide, including New Zealand and the USA.

As well as catering for formal and casual wear, here you will find everything you need to enjoy the great outdoors, with top quality designs from brands including Barbour, Brook Taverner, Le Chameau, Aigle, Viyella, Peter England, Gurteen, Farah, Hawick Knitwear, as well as Failsworth hats and caps. If you’re looking for quality shooting clothing, Wallhead’s stocks popular German brand Schöffel, including tweed breeks and waistcoats, with caps to match, as well as excellent Gore-Tex and Venturi waterproof, machine washable shooting coats.

For more information telephone: 01652 652356.

Photographs: Mick Fox

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