Below are the three individuals nominated for 2024’s ‘Archaeologist of the Year’, whose achievements reflect the diverse work taking place within our field.
Voting closed on 5 February and all the winners of the Current Archaeology Awards will be announced on 24 February as part of Current Archaeology Live! 2024. Click here to find out more about the event.
Andrew is the third generation of Birleys to work as the Director of Excavations on Hadrian’s Wall, after his father, Robin Birley, and grandfather, Eric Birley. He started excavating at Vindolanda as a teenager, before getting his undergraduate degree and PhD in archaeology from the University of Leicester. Andrew became the Vindolanda Trust’s Director of Excavations in 2005, its CEO in 2015, and during that time has enabled more than 7,000 volunteers to take part in research excavations on Hadrian’s Wall. Widely published and often seen on TV, Andrew is the Chair of the Writing Tablet Research Committee and is heavily committed to the battle to combat the damaging effects of climate change on our historic monuments and landscapes. He currently directs two excavations on Hadrian’s Wall, at Magna and Vindolanda Roman forts.
Since moving to Orkney more than 30 years ago, Nick has directed and managed a wide range of projects for the Orkney Research Centre for Archaeology within the UHI Archaeology Institute. He has also been involved in various aspects of research and fieldwork relating to Orkney’s World Heritage Site since it was inscribed in 1999, most notably as director of the Ness of Brodgar excavation (see www.nessofbrodgar.co.uk). This project has been internationally recognised, widely reported, and the recipient of several awards, while maintaining both a community ethos and high research standards. This has all been accomplished by a dedicated team effort.
Amanda is an Associate Professor of Field Archaeology with the Department of Archaeology at the University of Reading. Since 1997, she has been the Director of the Archaeology Field School, located at Silchester Roman Town (Insula IX) for 18 years, then in the Vale of Pewsey for 3 years and, most recently, at Silchester (Roman bathhouse), Islay (various sites), and Cookham (Anglo-Saxon settlement and associated cemetery). During these years, Amanda has developed an assessed Field School module that delivers a truly transformative experience for Reading students (and others), combining excellent research with professional training. The Field School embraces the diversity of archaeology in the field, as well as the increasing diversity of its workforce. Her credo is #itsnotalldigging, and over the 28 years of its life the Field School has seen its graduates (some 2,000 students) utilise the many skills gained to contribute fully to the archaeological profession.