Our Trustees

York Archaeology has a board of trustees that oversee our strategic operations. Learn more about them here.

Professor Anthony Robards, O.B.E., D.Sc. FRSB

Tony attended The Skinners’ School, Tunbridge Wells, and University College London where he took first and higher degrees in Biology. He was appointed to the University of York in 1966 and has published over 130 scientific papers and books in pure and applied biological research. Tony was awarded a D.Sc. by the University of London and a Personal Chair at the University of York as a result. He has been President of the Royal Microscopical Society and his academic career has spanned more than 40 years at the University during which time he served for 8 years on the Senior Management Team as Pro-Vice-Chancellor for External Relations and then as HSBC’s Chair of Innovation at the University of York.

Tony has been at the heart of many initiatives in the region, including as a co-founder of Science City York and the founder of Venturefest Yorkshire. He is a past President of the York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, and a Non-Executive Director of a number of public and private sector companies.

Completing a term (2 x 3yr) as Chairman of Yorkshire Cancer Research, Tony led major strategic and operational change. As a life-long opera lover he is now a member of the Patron’s Development Group.

Tony was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List, 2002, for “Services to Higher Education” arising from his work to link the University with the local business community. In November 2003 he received the first ever ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ at the Yorkshire Evening Press Business Awards ceremony.

Professor Ellen Roberts

After studying history at the University of Cambridge, Ellen joined the Civil Service where she had a range of posts in the Department of Health and Social Security, including Ministerial Private Office, policy development work and membership of a Bill team for a major piece of mental health legislation. During this period she was also seconded to the Cabinet Office to work within a cross-departmental Unit, and was seconded to what is now Ashridge Executive Education.

Ellen then moved to the Department of Social Policy and Social Work at the University of York, initially on secondment from the Civil Service. In her current role she oversees a set of innovative online postgraduate programmes, delivered to public service professionals in a wide range of countries. She holds a Higher Education Academy National Teaching Award, and is a Senior Fellow of the Academy. She chaired the university’s Distance Learning Forum between 2009 and 2017, and has also served on the University Teaching Committee. Ellen is currently leading her department’s work for Athena Swan, a higher education-wide initiative to promote gender equality. She is also a trustee for York Racial Equality Network.

Her key interests and experience are in enabling individuals and organisations to perform as effectively as possible, and in the role that organisational learning, professional development and the management of change play in this process.

Ian Melia

Ian developed a passionate interest in the history of York during his first year at Archbishop Holgate’s Grammar School, then in Lord Mayor’s Walk, when on most days he explored the Minster and its surrounds during the school lunch break. He continued his education at Pembroke College, Cambridge, where he read economics.

After graduation he qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Thornton Baker & Co in the City of London. He left practice soon after qualifying and held managerial and Finance Director roles successively in the oil, financial services and real estate sectors. In parallel with his main employment he also held a commission for 16 years in the Royal Auxiliary Air Force serving in an operational support squadron and was called-up on active duty for six months with the RAF in the Middle East in support of Operation Telic.

He is a trustee and Chair of the Finance Committee of the Royal Air Force Club, a trustee of the RAF Benevolent Fund’s employee pension scheme and acting Treasurer of the Honourable Company of Air Pilots’ Benevolent Fund. More locally he is Treasurer of the York Minster Precinct Neighbourhood Forum. Ian is a keen hill walker, a student of aviation history and is a qualified pilot usually flying a Piper PA-28.

Richard Watson

Richard Watson has held numerous, professional positions within his trained field of law since 1987. This has seen his practise look after a diverse client base covering significant cases.

He served as Local Authority Councillor for 21 years, first, on Ryedale District Council and, post-local government reorganisation, on City of York Council. He has had significant involvement with planning, spending 17 years regularly sitting on Planning Committees including Chair of City of York main Planning Committee 2003 – 2011, Vice-Chairman of Policy Committee at Ryedale DC, Board member of Ryedale Housing Association and, later, committee member of Yorkshire Housing Association.

Richard was Sheriff of York 2010-11 and created Hon. Alderman in 2011.

He has been a Trustee of York Archaeological Trust since 2011 and has been a member of various institutions including York Civic Trust, the Liberal Democrats and WWF. In his spare time, he enjoys tinkering rather than driving old MG and Morris motorcars, and loves photography. Richard also has a keen interest in classical music, and has performed at services in York Minster and the Royal Albert Hall.

Professor Martin Millet

Martin Millet has been the Laurence Professor of Classical Archaeology at the University of Cambridge since 2001 and is a Fellow of Fitzwilliam College. He has been a Fellow of the British Academy since 2006. He previously taught at Durham University (1981–98) and at the University of Southampton (1999–2001). His research focuses on the archaeology of socio-economic change in the Roman world and the application of survey methods in archaeology. He has directed a series of major field projects in Spain, Portugal, Italy and the UK. In Britain, his fieldwork since the 1980s has been focused on landscapes in Yorkshire, with major projects around Holme-upon-Spalding Moor, Shiptonthorpe, Hayton, Thwing and most recently Aldborough, where he has been working on studies of the Roman town of Isurium Brigantum. He has published widely and is active in communicating his subject to public audiences.

He has also taken a number of leadership roles in the voluntary sector and in the university. From 2014–18 he was Head of the School of Arts and Humanities at Cambridge (comprising 8 academic departments and more than 250 permanent academic staff). He has also been a Vice-President of the British Academy responsibility for the Overseas Schools and Institutes (2010–14), and was successively the Director (2001–07) and Treasurer (2007–11) of the Society of Antiquaries of London. He is a member of Antiquity Trust and was chairman of Antiquity Publications Ltd from 2006–14.

Peter Wheatcroft

Peter formed a management consultancy in 2002 covering both IT work and technology for the events industry. He has been responsible for the technical design and deployment of IT services for over 25 corporate clients such as Yorkshire Building Society, Boots and the John Lewis Partnership.

Before founding his own company, Peter was the Director of Commercial and Information Management for Alliance & Leicester plc. He has published two text books, World Class IT Service Delivery and Service Desk & Incident Manager as well as many white papers on a diverse range of topics covering IT and information security. He is both a Chartered Engineer and a Chartered IT Professional and has been awarded fellowships by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), the
British Computer Society (BCS) and the Institution of Engineering & Technology (IET). He has also judged the annual UK IT Industry Awards since 2002.

Peter’s work in theatre and live events has involved the staging of some of the UK’s most ambitious productions as well as sound engineering projects for community radio stations, churches and diverse live events. He served as AV Advisor to the DAC for the Diocese of Leicester until 2013 and until recently worked as a volunteer sound engineer at the Joseph Rowntree Theatre in York.

Peter has also been a trustee of the Yorkshire Philosophical Society (YPS) and was President of York Camera Club between 2018 and 2019 and has had over 200 pictures published in the last year. He has been a member of the Friends of YAT (FOYAT) for over 20 years, has been part of an archaeological field walking group and is a life member of the Friends of York Minster. He is a member of St Edward the Confessor at Dringhouses, where he served three years as a PCC trustee.

Edmund Southworth

Edmund Southworth graduated in Archaeology and Ancient History at Lancaster in 1977 and also has an M.Phil from Liverpool University. He is an Associate of the Museums Association, started his museum career at the Harris Museum in Preston before moving to Liverpool Museums where he had several roles over a 20-year period. He became Head of Humanities with responsibility for the curatorial team and the worldwide collections including British, European, African, American and Asian archaeology and ethnographic material. Major projects during this period included work on the first UK gallery devoted to the Transatlantic Slave Trade and the major refurbishment of the Liverpool Museum. During this time, he was editor for the Society of Museum Archaeologists and a Board member of the Archaeology Data Service in York.

Edmund undertook the Museum Leadership Programme at the University of East Anglia and became the Lancashire County Museums Officer in 2001 with responsibility for some 13 museums and historic sites including two textile mills and two castles. During this period, he secured funding for, and managed, several significant capital schemes including new Conservation Studios. He also spent a four-year term as a Committee Member of the Heritage Fund for the North West. 

From 2009 till retirement in 2021 he was Director of Manx National Heritage (Eiraght Ashoonagh Vannin) which is the national heritage agency for the Isle of Man – a Crown Dependency. It maintains the National Library and Museum, two castles and a range of archaeological sites, holds 3000 acres of land and some 400 sheep! 

Edmund has been Chair of the Destination Viking Association, a tourism-based organisation with 60 members across Europe. He remains an advisor to the Board and to the Follow the Vikings Route of European Heritage. He has recently joined the Museums Committee of the Heritage Railway Association.

Katerina Vavaliou

Katerina Vavaliou is an Architect (MEng), licensed to practise in the UK and Greece (ARB Part 3, TEE-TCG). She specialised in the Protection of Monuments: Restoration and Conservation of Historical Buildings and Sites at the National Technical University of Athens (MSc). She holds an MSt in Late Antique and Byzantine Studies from the University of Oxford and Wadham College, where she is currently completing her doctorate in Archaeology, funded by the Greek Archaeological Committee UK and Samourkas Foundation NY.

As an architect and restorer, Katerina has worked for the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports, for the Excavation and Restoration project of Ancient Kalydon, conducted by the Danish Institute at Athens, and for the Aphrodisias Excavations, conducted by New York University in collaboration with the University of Oxford. She also has professional experience in enabling mutually beneficial partnerships between academia and the heritage sector, with a special interest in the Social Sciences and Humanities. Following three years at The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities, she is currently working on an ASPECT Innovation Fellowship for the Oxford School of Archaeology.

Katerina is the Membership Secretary for the Society for the Promotion of Byzantine Studies, UK and a committee member of the Research and Impact Group of the Chartered Institute for Archaeologists.

Sian Hoggett

Sian Hoggett is Head of Customer Relationship Management at The British Museum, and Head of The British Museum Friends. As Head of The British Museum Friends, Sian and her team are responsible for looking after the Museum’s circa 70,000 Members. Members play a vital role in continuing the work of the Museum, and Sian and her team ensure Members are recruited and retained and offered opportunities to further invest their money and time into the Museum.

As the Museum’s Head of Customer Relationship Management, Sian is also responsible for ticketing, marketing and patronage (those contributing up to £12,000 annually). Sian is an expert at acquiring and utilising customer data, working to engage visitors with the Museum by buying tickets, subscribing to emails, donating etc.

Prior to working at The British Museum, Sian held roles with London Business School, University College London and King’s College London, working in alumni relations, volunteer management and fundraising roles. Sian has also participated in the Clore Leadership Programme, London Business School’s Emerging Leader Programme, and the Chartered Institute of Marketing’s diploma in Marketing Communications.

Sian studied History and Politics at York University, which is where her love of the city began. Prior to this she attended the United World College of the Atlantic and grew up in the Isle of Man, where she enjoyed visiting Manx National Heritage’s sites.

Doctor Eva Mol

Eva Mol is a lecturer in Roman Archaeology at the department of Archaeology in York. She has a wide interest in archaeology; aside from everything Roman, this includes archaeological theory, Greco-Roman religion, digital archaeology, Greek and Roman art history, and museum- and heritage studies related to the ancient Mediterranean. Eva has obtained her BA in Classical and Near Eastern archaeology, RMA (Mres) in Mediterranean archaeology and PhD at Leiden University, the Netherlands. Her MA dissertation on Crusader Castles in the Near East and computational analysis has been published as a monograph. Her PhD research investigated Egyptian material culture in Roman domestic contexts in Pompeii (forthcoming at Oxford University Press).

After her PhD, Eva worked with the Egyptian Museum in Turin, Italy, as a guest curator, curating the exhibition ‘Il Nilo a Pompei’ on the influence of Egypt in Pompeii and Italy. She has done research at The University of Chicago Classics (2016-2017) on mythology and materiality in the Mediterranean world. This project studies how landscape, objects, and mythology became increasingly connected during 6th and 1st centuries BC, shaping the Mediterranean, using case studies from Greece, Turkey, Italy and North Africa. Eva has also been a postdoctoral researcher at Brown University at the Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology and the Ancient World (2017-2019) and worked at the Institute of Archaeology at UCL, teaching Greek and Roman art and archaeology (2019-2022).

Eva has collaborated and worked on a number of Mediterranean archaeological fieldwork projects in Pompeii, Rome, Cyprus, Greece, and Tunisia.