The Avebury Papers

I am a Postdoctoral Research Associate for the UKRI-funded ‘Avebury Papers’ project. My day-to-day focus is on organising, cataloguing, photographing and researching the paper-based archive cared for by the National Trust at Avebury. The archival materials stem from archaeological excavations of the Neolithic monument complex in the early 20th century. Collaborating with volunteers is intrinsic to this project, and I am looking to facilitate a range of publications and public events with them.

Afterlives of Sutton Hoo

With another hat on, I research the afterlife of Sutton Hoo. From the moment of excavation in 1939, the seventh-century burial site in Suffolk has been instrumentalised to support ethno-nationalist narratives in England. Old English poetry has been intrinsic to this process. However, local communities and artists have also resourced Sutton Hoo to reimagine medieval and modern lives. My book will develop this research from my PhD thesis, and I have published articles on related topics.

Bringing together my interest in afterlives of the Neolithic and the early medieval, I am working on an article examining the effects on sites such as Avebury of entanglements of Neolithic remains, early medieval ideas, late medieval characters, Victorian neomedievalisms, and contemporary pagan practices. 

Together with Francesca Brooks, Carl Kears, and Beth Whalley, I am fascinated by processes and practices of ‘revoicing’ the medieval. I am preparing an article on how contemporary artists ‘revoice’ medieval people, objects, and events in expansive and inclusive ways, which resist traditional and patriarchal narratives of the past.

I am also writing an article tracing a ‘creative network’ of contemporary remakings of the Old English ‘Seafarer’poem, examining work by poet Amy Kate Riach, illustrator Jila Peacock, and composer Sally Beamish. On the back burner is a project examining the phenomenon of post-war commemorative medieval events, pageants, and community festivals.

The excavation of Sutton Hoo, Suffolk, 1939.

In 2017, I researched and designed a temporary display at the National Trust site, and facilitated learning activities on site. This included a poetry walk: visitors borrowed mp3 players to listen to ask they explored.

Sutton Hoo today.

Teaching Old English poetry in  Primary Schools,  article in Primary History 86.

I teach Medieval Literature at undergraduate and postgraduate level. My specialisms are Old English poetry, medievalism, medieval to modern translation, and multi-media archival research.

I have been an education facilitator at the British Museum since 2015, and contributed to National Lottery Heritage Funded workshops for public and schools audiences.

I run workshops (online and offline) on wikipedia editing, audio recording and editing skills, interviewer and interview skills, and wordpress editing.

Email me if you’d like me to join your project as a teacher, facilitator, resource producer, or to discuss your training needs.


The Courtauld

Between 2020-2021 I produced the Courtauld Digital Media Blog audio. We began the process during lockdown, and volunteers recorded themselves with basic equipment. I introduced volunteers to DIY recording skills, and I edited the final audio. You can find the blog here, and you can also listen to Spotify.

Footnotes podcast
Interviews with humanities researchers. Listen here.

Footnotes podcast, 2015-2017. I produced and hosted interviews with arts and humanities researchers. Listen here.

Mechanics of Memory, pages 28-29. See the digital book here.

Mechanics of Memory

Photographs (colour and self-developed black and white 35mm film) and found text. Handmade books, edition of three.

A Gift for the Illuminated Sphere

Gifted on the occassion of Caroline Bergvall’s residency at the Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK, 2015. Handmade books, edition of five. Shortlisted for the Ivan Juritz Prize.

A Gift for the Illuminated Sphere, pages 4-5. See the digital book here.
Allfrey, F. L., & Brooks, F. A. (2015). A Gift for the Illuminated Sphere. Textual Practice, 30(1), 15-17.
A Gift for the Illuminated Sphere, pages 12-13. See the digital book here.


True Songs
Conversations with my nonna, and film exploring her photographs and ornaments. Official Selection for the Aesthetica Short Film Festival 2016.

Audio interviews with accompanying visuals for the community website and social media.

︎Twitter (@francheskyia)