Gill Chitty

Gill Chitty


Former affiliations

Accepting PhD Students

Personal profile

Research interests

Research interests are in the evolution of public policy for heritage protection and its interaction with environmental conservation and sustainability policies. The political economy of heritage - in the Ruskinian sense of a cultural project for a “citizens’ economy” - remains a central research interest, together with the emergence of civil society as a force for change and an instrument of state policy in an era of localism and sustainable communities. Current work is concerned with the impact of public engagement in 'conservation in action' projects. 

My doctoral research at the Ruskin Research Centre explored the cultural context for John Ruskin’s early work – writing, teaching, and social commentary - on the historic environment and his impact on the emergence of a distinctive British conservation philosophy and landscape gaze in the 19th and 20th-century conservation movement.


Employment History

Dr Gill Chitty is Director of the Conservation Studies MA programme and the Centre for Conservation Studies.

Before joining the Department of Archaeology at the University of York, Gill was Head of Conservation at the Council for British Archaeology responsible for research and policy. She has over 35 years professional experience in the heritage sector working in conservation and public archaeology.

Following a first degree in Archaeology at the University of Wales (Cardiff), she took the Museums Association Graduate Diploma in Archaeology (1980) and the Building Conservation Diploma at the Architectural Association (1987). Her PhD at Lancaster University's Ruskin Research Centre (1997) examined the cultural context for Ruskin’s influence and legacy in architectural conservation.


Gill began her career in Liverpool Museum’s Antiquities Department and then moved into local government archaeology, as County Archaeologist in Merseyside and then Greater London. Moving to English Heritage, as an Inspector of Ancient Monuments, she worked in Greater London and then the Midlands advising on major conservation programmes including Bolsover Castle, Wingfield Manor, Stokesay Castle, Clun Castle, and Lincoln Bishop’s Palace.

Following her PhD research, she worked at specialist adviser for archaeology at Lancashire County Council and then for English Heritage’s Monuments Protection Programme, developing an integrated approach to designation for industrial heritage in England.

As a heritage consultant over the last 15 years, Gill has conducted research commissioned by Cadw, the Cathedrals Fabric Commission and Church Buildings Council, Council for British Archaeology, Department for Culture, Media and Sport, English Heritage, ICOMOS UK, Institute for Archaeologists, Museums, Libraries and Archives Council and Portable Antiquities Scheme.

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or