School of History, Classics and Archaeology

Staff Profile

Graham Fairclough

Principal Research Associate


I am a researcher and policy advisor on heritage and landscape, and a member of the University’s McCord Centre for Landscape. I work frequently in European contexts, notably with the Council of Europe and on EU networking porjects. My focus is mainly on historic landscape, interdisciplinary landscape studies, new heritage ideas and archaeological resource management. I currently work with the five-nation Horizon 2020 Marie Sklodowska Curie International training network  HERILAND (2019-2023.

 I was recently the co-ordinator of the European Commission JPI-Cultural heritage project 'CHeriScape' ( and  since 2012 have been joint editor of the journal Landscapes (first with Paul Stamper, latterly Sam Turner). I was a member of COST Action IS1007 Investigating Culture in Sustainability (2011-2015) and am a Trustee of the Landscape Research Group (2010 - ).

Until March 2012,I had a lengthy career in heritage management and landscape research in English Heritage, first as an Inspector of Ancient Monuments, and  from 1993 as leader of the national Monuments Protection Programme (1995-2002), leading the development and implementation of  the Historic Landscape Characterisation programme in England, and  in 2000 co-ordinating the 'Power of Place' review (2000). Most recently in EH I was as Head of Characterisation (2002 -2012).

I have served in succession on the Councils of the Institute of Field Archaeologists, the Society of Antiquaries of London and the European Association of Archaeologists (EAA) and was a member of  the COST/ESF committee charged with producing the ESF/COST Science Policy Briefing ‘Landscape in a Changing World’, which I co-authored. I was a visiting fellow: in the Dept of Archaeology, York University  2000-2003, in the School of Archaeology, Oxford University 2013-15 and at Newcastle since 2006. In the past I have been  a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of LE:NOTRE, an EU-funded Europe-wide network of landscape architecture schools, 2004-2014, the MSRG committee, 2010-2013, the Advisory Board for AHRC’s Landscape & Environment Impact Fellowship, 2010-11, and an advisory member of the ESF/COST Landscape ‘Network of Networks’ (SPB committee) (2008-2010) and a lead author of its ESF Science Policy Briefing 'Landscape in a Changing World' (2010)

I am a member of the advisory Board of the Journal of European Landscapes (Amsterdam University Pres) and have peer reviewed  for many journals (for example Landscape Research, Antiquity, European Journal of Archaeology, Int. Journal of Heritage Management, Land Use Planning, Geographical Journal, Heritage & Society, Journal of Urban Cultural studies) and publishers (T&F, OUP, Berghahn), advised and assessed grants for several Research Councils (NWO in the Netherlands, Formas in Sweden, Norwegian Research council, ESF, AHRC - UK) and University programmes (eg Ghent), and lectured to Masters-level heritage /and landscape course in the UK (eg. UC London, Sheffield,Southampton, York, Rewley House Oxford) and other countries(eg UC Dublin, Lund, Gent, Harvard, Budapest, Willowbank) and co-supervised (as 'industry sponsor) two cross-disciplinary PhDs at Lancaster and Sheffield, and externally examined PhDs in Lund and York.


My principal recent and current research is:

a) a participant in HERILAND, a 4-year MSCA International training Network

b) follow-up from the CHeriScape project, a three year JPI Cultural Heritage project (2014-16) with five national partners exploring 'Landscape as heritage' by means of a series of five inter-disciplinary conferences. ( 

c) co-editing Landscapes

d) co-editing a Routledge Handbook on Landscape Character Assessment (published May 2018)

e) section editor for heritage on the Wiley SAS Encyclopedia of Archaeological Sciences (published late 2018)

In the past I have been closely involved in several European landscape-based network projects (notably European Pathways to the Cultural Landscape, COST A27 Landmarks and Eucaland), and in UK projects such as  AHRC Research Network Early Modern Discourses of Environmental Change and Sustainability and the ERC funded 'EngLaId project (Oxford).

During the last 25 years I have worked on a range of projects from co-writing PPG16 and developing EH policy on sustainability and the historic environment, to historic landscape and countryside matters, and I have worked closely with the implementation across Europe in conjunction with the Council of Europe of both the European Landscape Convention and the Faro Convention on the value of cultural heritage for society.