I am Director of the Centre for the History of People, Place and Community at the Institute of Historical Research, School of Advanced Study, University of London. I am a specialist in medieval culture, and in uses of the medieval today, with a particular focus on place, identity and heritage. My work emphasises inter-disciplinary approaches, the use of new media or digital tools, and the value of collaborative and partnership activities which extend beyond academia. I am currently Academic Director of CARMEN: The Worldwide Medieval Network, and Programme Co-ordinator for Anglo-Saxon Studies at the annual Leeds International Medieval Congress. I am Series Editor for Places and Spaces: Medieval to Modern (Arc Humanities Press).
I have directed several major AHRC-funded projects on medieval places, including Mapping Medieval Chester: place and identity in an English borderland city c.1200-1500, Discover Medieval Chester, and City Witness: Place and Perspective in Medieval Swansea . These projects have brought together digital mapping and visualisation with textual editing and analysis, to advance new insights into how urban environments were experienced and understood in the Middle Ages. These projects have also all involved partnerships with agencies outside academia, producing a wide range of heritage interpretation materials, from interactive digital maps and computer games to museum exhibitions and public art - and even a real ale.
My most recent AHRC-funded project (2017-18) developed The St Thomas Way: a new heritage route from Swansea to Hereford, inspired by a real medieval pilgrimage. You can follow the project on Twitter @StThomasWay, or visit www.thomasway.ac.uk. My latest book (forthcoming spring 2019) is on Medieval Cityscapes Today.