Rachael Kiddey
Research Associate



Rachael obtained her first degree in History of Art & Italian from Oxford Brookes University (BA hons), before working as a documentary television researcher for several years (BBC TV & Channel 4). In 2003/4, whilst still undertaking freelance media work, Rachael gained a Masters in Historical Archaeology of the Modern World at the University of Bristol. Rachael’s MA dissertation used the Bristol pirate walk as a case study for understanding the relationship between archaeology and heritage. Following her Masters, Rachael became a documentary producer at BBC Radio 4, where she specialised in feature programmes concerning social affairs, current archaeology and anthropology and political history. In 2014, Rachael successfully passed her PhD within four years and without corrections: the title of her thesis was ‘Homeless Heritage: collaborative social archaeology as therapeutic practice’. Fieldwork involved developing participatory archaeological methodologies for working with contemporary homeless people on their heritage. Since obtaining her PhD, Rachael has divided her time between writing a book on ‘Homeless Heritage’ for Oxford University Press, her position as Research Associate at the University of York and working as Editorial Assistant for the Independent Social Research Foundation (www.isrf.org). Rachael is a member of the Chartered Institute for Archaeologists.



Research interests focus on: the theory and practice of contemporary archaeology; heritage as a participatory public practice and its therapeutic capacities; the ethics and aesthetics of archaeological practices and the political role of contemporary archaeology. Rachael has published widely on these topics. Recent examples include accessible popular articles in magazines (The Big Issue, British Archaeology) and chapters in books, such as ‘Who needs experts? Counter-mapping cultural heritage’ and ‘Theory and Practice in Heritage and Sustainability: Between Past and Future’; and forthcoming books e.g. ‘The Routledge Companion to Contemporary Anthropology’ and ‘InHabit: the experience and materiality of domestic life’. Rachael has also published in leading peer-reviewed academic journals, including Public Archaeology and Post-medieval Archaeology and she has a joint article written with Paul Graves-Brown in the forthcoming issue of the Archaeological Review from Cambridge. Rachael is currently working on a collaborative graphic project with ex-homeless colleague, Andrew Dafnis and Swedish artist Mats Brate (Journal of Contemporary Archaeology, forthcoming) and her monograph on ‘Homeless Heritage’ (Oxford University Press, forthcoming). 


Selected publications

Forthcoming Book

Kiddey, R. Homeless Heritage: collaborative social archaeology as therapeutic practice, Oxford University Press

Forthcoming Articles

Kiddey, R. ‘Homeless habitus: an archaeology of homeless places’. In ‘InHabit: the experience and materiality of domestic life’, Buxton, A. (ed) Oxford University Press

Kiddey, R. Hand in Hand: homelessness, heritage and collaborative approaches to the material past. In The Routledge Companion to Contemporary Anthropology, Coleman, S., Hyatt, Susan B., & Kingsolver, Ann, E. (eds). Routledge

Graves-Brown, P. & Kiddey, R. Reclaiming the Streets. The Role of Archaeology in Deconstructing the Myths of Contemporary Society. In ‘Archaeology: myths within and without’, Archaeological Review from Cambridge

Kiddey, R. & Schofield, J. “Keeping it real”: Social Sustainability in the Homeless Heritage Project in Bristol and York (UK) in Theory and Practice in Heritage and Sustainability: Between Past and Future, Auclair, E. & Fairclough, G. (eds). Routledge


Crea, G., Dafnis, A., Hallam, J., Kiddey, R. & Schofield, J. (2014), ‘Turbo Island, Bristol: excavating a contemporary homeless place’, Post-medieval Archaeology, 48/1, pp.133-150

Kiddey, R. 2014, ‘Punks & drunks: counter mapping homeless heritage’ in ‘Who needs experts? Counter-mapping cultural heritage’ (ed) Schofield, J.


Kiddey, Lashua & Schofield, 2012, ‘People and Landscape’ in (ed) Skeates, McDavid & Carman (2012), The Oxford Handbook of Public Archaeology, Oxford University Press, pp. 296-318


Kiddey, R. & Schofield, J. 2011, ‘Embrace the Margins: adventures in archaeology and homelessness’, Public Archaeology, Vol. 10 No. 1, pp.4–22


Kiddey, R. & Schofield, J. 2010. ‘Digging for (Invisible) People’ British Archaeology, 113 (July/August): pp.18–23


Kiddey, R. & Schofield, J., ‘Homeless Archaeology’ in The Big Issue 874: pp.14-15

Rachael Kiddey

Contact details

Dr Rachael Kiddey
Research Associate
Department of Archaeology
University of York
The King's Manor