Ambassador: David Wyatt

Portrait of David Wyatt

Current role:
Academic (teaching)
Cardiff University
Arts and humanities
Higher education changed my life and raised my aspirations and this has instilled me with a deep commitment and passion for public engagement and widening access which has in turn moulded my career path.


I came to Cardiff University to study history and archaeology as a mature student during the mid-1990s. For a number of years, I co-ordinated a vibrant programme of open access adult education courses in history and archaeology at the Centre for Lifelong Learning. I assumed the role of Lecturer and Community Engagement Co-ordinator in the School of History and Archaeology at Cardiff in 2009 where I also teach and research. I specialise in the history of slavery and servitude in the societies of medieval Britain. I have published a number of articles on this topic and my recent book Slaves and Warriors in Medieval Britain and Ireland, 800-1200 (2009) examines the extreme social and cultural significance of slavery for these societies. My research interests also include: Viking era settlement and society in the Irish Sea region, gender and power in early-medieval Britain and the Anti-Slavery movement in 19th Century Wales.

What motivated you to engage with the public?

Higher education changed my life and raised my aspirations and this has instilled me with a deep commitment and passion for public engagement and widening access which has in turn moulded my career path.

Describe the public engagement work you have done

As the community engagement co-ordinator for the School of History & Archaeology:

  • I promote and manage community, engagement and outreach initiatives in the SchoolI contribute to and lead the development of new outreach and engagement initiatives.
  • I contribute to creating collaborative initiatives and programmes internally and externally.
  • I co-ordinate informal and formal outreach learning.

CAER Heritage Project

The Caerau and Ely Rediscovering Heritage Project (CAER) engages Cardiff's Ely and Caerau communities in excavating and exploring an un-researched Iron-Age hillfort, building a detailed picture of the history of this area. For further details of the project see:

Project website:

Facebook Page with information & images:!/CAERHeritageProject

Interview about the project on the Timeteam Blog:

SHARE with Schools Project

I co-ordinate SHARE with Schools (SwS) a project which creates links with local secondary schools and sixth forms in a variety of 'widening access' locations in South-east Wales (currently Ely, Caerau, Leckwith and the Cynon Valley). For further details of the project see my research page:

& Project web site:

Exploring the Past Foundation Pathway

I conceived, designed and manage this research led foundation pathway which provides non-traditional adult learners with progression onto part-time degree schemes in SHARE with advanced standing. For further details see:

Exploring the Past Web Site:

Fairbridge in the Park – Stone Age Graffiti Project

I instigated and co-ordinated a project in July 2011 involving a unique partnership between the Bute Park Restoration Project, the National Museum of Wales and the charity Fairbridge - who work with disadvantaged young people aged 13-25. Young people from Fairbridge spent the morning at a secluded riverside spot in Bute Park learning how stone-age people knapped flint and worked antler and bone into handles, combs and other useful things. Inspired by these experiences the young people went on to design a piece of eco-graffiti artwork in the park themed on Palaeolithic cave paintings guided by professional artist Paul Evans.

Getting Medieval at Cosmeston Medieval Village

I devised, organised and co-ordinated this collaborative event with Centre for Lifelong Learning and the Vale of Glamorgan Council. Getting medieval was a family learning event held during National Adult Learners Week with a variety of interactive activities and workshops exploring aspects of medieval life. I produced a detailed evaluation report following the event:

For further details of my engagement activities please see my research page:

Here is also a brief selection of just some the community engagement initiatives I am / have been involved in:

November 2010, Life Stories A one day public engagement event exploring the immense value life stories have for our society, for communities and for individuals.

May 2010, Getting Medieval A one-day family learning event to celebrate National Adult Learners Week at a reconstructed medieval village exploring aspects of medieval life.

April to July 2009, I was the co-architect of a (partially) successful campaign to save open access humanities courses at Cardiff.

2004 to present day. Free History/Archaeology/Humanities Series I established and continue to co-ordinate this monthly series of open access lectures.

May 2009, A one day, free, open-access conference in collaboration with the Beacons for Wales project. History, Archaeology, Politics and Identity.

May 2007, An open access event to raise awareness about slavery and promote anti-slavery activities.


Name: Dr David Wyatt