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Yannick Signer

Research project

Title: Potting landscapes: a regional approach to the development of pottery production in 11th-13th century Yorkshire

Supervisors: Dr Aleks McClain and Dr Gareth Perry

Funding: AHRC funded through the White Rose College of the Arts & Humanities (WRoCAH)

This project pioneers a regional approach to medieval craft production, exploring how the sociocultural transition after the Norman Conquest impacted ceramic technologies. The project focuses on 11th-13th-century pottery in Yorkshire, scientifically analysing material from production and consumption sites and setting it within wider spatial, chronological, and landscape contexts to discern patterns of technological innovation. Via this novel approach, the project will identify drivers influencing production processes and organisation, presenting an innovative, material perspective on how the Conquest affected all levels of medieval society.


I completed my BA in Archaeology at the University of York in 2020, during which I became interested in the rural landscapes of medieval Yorkshire. My BA dissertation investigated the agricultural development of early medieval Yorkshire (based on bioarchaeological evidence), which has since been published in the Archaeological Journal. I then went on to do an MA in Medieval Archaeology at York, where I combined my focus on Yorkshire’s archaeology and the importance of landscape analysis with my emerging interest in pottery and pottery production. This research formed the basis of my PhD project, where I am focusing on the developments between the 11th and 13th centuries and expanding upon the salient conclusions of my MA thesis.

Publications/Papers and Academic Awards

Peer-reviewed publications

Signer, Y (2022) Establishing a Narrative: A Bioarchaeological Study of Agricultural Development in Early Medieval Yorkshire. Archaeological Journal, 179 (2), 341-370, doi: 10.1080/00665983.2022.2088888.

Academic Awards


  • Postgraduate Dissertation Award issued by the Society of Medieval Archaeology 
  • Herman Ramm Dissertation Award issued by the Yorkshire Philosophical Society


  • Tony Baggs Undergraduate Dissertation Award issued by the Royal Archaeological Institute
  • John Hurst Dissertation Award issued by the Society for Medieval Archaeology

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Contact details

Yannick Signer
Department of Archaeology
University of York
Kings Manor