The Basics

I’m Pat Hadley and I’m interested in sharing my passion for knowledge about culture and the past. I want to find the most exciting ways of telling brilliant stories about fascinating stuff. I feel most at home with with artists, media people and GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums) folk.

I’m adamant that we should be democratising and opening up access to cultural material and knowledge for all. I’m interested in community engagement, audience development and using culture for positive social change.

I’ve been an archaeologist for the last 10 years because I didn’t want to give anything up: art, cultural theory, science, social science, practical work and philosophical quandaries. Archaeology seemed to cover them all. I’ve frozen my fingers in muddy trenches all over Yorkshire and beyond and processed soil samples, catalogued material and argued about hand axes for longer than some might think is healthy.

For the last 5 years, though, I’ve become more interested in the ways the public engages with the past – and all these other subjects. Particularly, there seemed to be scope in this exciting new thing called the internet to help lots of people get involved. When I found Wikipedia it seemed like a brilliant match, and for the last two years I’ve been a keen advocate and editor: helping archaeologists get involved in the site and pointing wikipedians toward archaeological resources.

Lately, my work has broadened to reflect his interests and I’m working with other professionals in cultural heritage on improving public engagement.


In June 2013 I left a PhD in the Archaeology department at the University of York in order to pursue a more diverse range of projects. I wrote a little about the challenges of the decision here: Farewell academia.

Here are the basics:

  • December 2012 – June 2013 | Leave of absence from PhD, part-time family carer
  • October 2011 – November 2012 | PhD The ‘Meso-what?’ project at the University of York
  • October 2010 – September 2011 | MA Mesolithic Studies at the University of York – Distinction
  • March 2010 – September 2010 | Enkyad Heritage Media – a first attempt at practising my ideas
  • October 2009 – February 2010 | Archaeological Services WYAS – a short stint in the “archaeological infantry”
  • September 2005 – June 2009 | BSc Archaeology at the University of Bradford – First Class

2 thoughts on “The Basics

  1. Hi Pat,

    I was delighted to discover your blog and even more delighted that someone is actively researching the public understanding of the Mesolithic. I live in “Mesolithic Central” (the South Downs) and was disappointed to find how little information was easily available so I started my website as a contribution to making info easily available. I’m looking forward to following your blog.

    Richard Milton

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