Katrina Foxton

Research project

Within the Walls (AHRC CDA Award)

Project Strand-"Heritage management, value and local communities"

Supervised by John Schofield and co-supervised by John Oxley at the City of York Council.


I will be working on the second strand of the Within The Walls project which aims to assess the ‘local heritage management processes’ in York, in particular looking at how the assessment of ‘values’ are used to make decisions about heritage by practitioners, and also to see whether ‘local heritage communities’—including those marginalised groups—can be involved in this process in some way.

The key terms prominent in my inquiry are;

‘local heritage management processes’: There are many different forms of managing heritage, from those that are public to those that are not so public; it is the areas such as planning development, designation of listed buildings, and tourist management strategies, that I aim to critically assess. By researching current local and national policies and by talking to practitioners within the field—both from within the local authority and other institutions—I hope to understand fully how the heritage management process actually works on a day-today basis.

‘value’: English Heritage’s Conservation Principles identify four values—aesthetic, historical, social, and economic—but there is vast array of ‘values’ shared by practitioners and by the local community. Arguably communication is vital, and by experimenting through a variety of digital, visual and textual media, it may be possible to create exciting new ways of 'talking' which encourage a fruitful exchange of knowledge and appropriately convey the values of different people.

local heritage community’: This term is adapted from the Faro Convention (Council of Europe 2005). I actually have yet to find out what this term means in reality, but I believe generally it refers to the way that groups are bound together by common interests, including an interest in their shared history and heritage. I expect to learn the most about my project from working collaboratively with a variety of different heritage communities.


Katrina Foxton holds a MA degree in from the University of York (2013), and a BA degree in English Literature, University of Exeter (2010). Her academic research background is interdisciplinary, but assembles mainly around questions of the discursive representation of culture and the impact of the material on humans. Her MA research includes analysing the phenomenological effect of material and visual artefacts on people—in particular, Victorian postcards—and also in the same vein, the effects of digitised historical photographs online. Her previous studies in literature come to fore when discussing the impact of communication and dialogue of meanings in heritage management.

Katrina’s working background involves free-lancing for the cultural mobile-app company specialising in heritage sites, volunteering as an Oral History Researcher, working as part of the Visualisation team at Çatalhöyük in August 2013. Her interests in this project stem from a wish to work with the community and to understand the functional leap between heritage in practice and in theory.


Contact details

Katrina Foxton
Department of Archaeology
University of York
The King's Manor

Tel: (44) 1904 433931
Fax: (44) 1904 433902