Steph is a specialist in the Mesolithic of Northern Europe, with a particular focus on hunter-gatherer mobility, and using lithic raw materials to trace the movement of communities. Steph completed her BA in Archaeology (2010), MA in Archaeology with Prehistory (2011), and AHRC funded PhD (2017) at Durham University where she developed an ever increasing love for the Mesolithic of Scotland, and of coasts and islands more generally.
Following submission of her PhD, Steph worked as a commercial archaeologist for Archaeological Services Durham University as both a field archaeologist and palaeoenvionmental specialist, before becoming Lecturer in Prehistoric Archaeology at Newcastle University (2018-2019).
Steph joined York in 2019 as Associate Lecturer in Archaeology, and maintains research interests in early prehistoric Scotland, northern England, Denmark, Spain, and Lebanon.
Steph’s PhD research focused on the analysis of lithics and the variability of raw materials used from the first Mesolithic sites in the Western Isles of Scotland. Comparisons between these assemblages, and our current understanding of Mesolithic occupation of the islands and coasts of western Scotland, Ireland, and south-west Norway were used to place the hunter-gatherer adaptations to resource availability within the wider north Atlantic seaboard.
In April 2019, Steph directed a coastal erosion assessment survey in the Highlands of Scotland to locate potential areas of early prehistoric activity, and in June led a small-scale excavation of the first site located by the survey, which appears to be a previously unidentified burnt mound of possible early Bronze Age date. This research project was funded by Newcastle University to facilitate training of two Master’s students in coastal erosion survey
Steph has also been involved in a number of collaborations: as co-director of an additional project to investigate early prehistoric coastal communities on the Small Isles, western Scotland; lithic analysis and excavation at the Early Mesolithic site of No Name Hill, North Yorkshire, undertaking lithic analysis from a Danish Mesolithic-Neolithic shell midden site; excavation and analysis of a late Neolithic to Early Bronze Age lithic assemblage from coastal Lebanon; and survey work to identify Epipalaeolithic and Early Neolithic sites in southern Spain.