Board of trustees


We currently have vacancies for new trustees, particularly with expertise in the field of archaeology, landscape, farming, social enterprise, and policy making. Please email if you would like to find out more.

Epiacum Heritage is managed by a small team of Trustees.

Elaine Edgar

Along with her husband, Elaine owns Castle Nook Farm and has, quite literally lived ‘in the nook of the castle’ for thirty years! Elaine says:

Up until six years ago, Epiacum existed as an earthwork monument on our farm, which we used for grazing. Under a strict management agreement with English Heritage, we are responsible for the preservation and management of the site.

Having worked in Primary education for eighteen years and progressing towards a full teaching qualification, I realised the potential for education on my doorstep and began the long process of preparing the site for use as an “Outdoor Classroom” environment.

I have experience in planning and delivering educational activities and believe that learning should be meaningful, creative and enjoyable. The site of Epiacum, and indeed the farm, provides an excellent base for cross curricular learning. I also recognise the potential for increased tourism and economic regeneration in the local area and am keen to set up strong partnership working relationships with other local tourism providers.

Paul Mercer

Paul is an experienced heritage professional, who has worked on a number of projects at home and overseas, including his current work on the reconstruction of an ocean going Viking longship in Norway. He brings a wealth of experience to Epiacum and his extensive knowledge of the local lead mining landscape is of particular value to us.

Dr. David Wilkinson

David is Chair of the board of trustees. He is Ex Army, Ex Police and is currently a psychologist and lectures at the University of Oxford and is an expert in human and organisational reactions to uncertainty. He is also Editor-in-Chief  of The Oxford Review. David has a keen interest in archeology and history and has attended a number of the masterclasses at Epiacum.

David says “Epiacum is a lot more than just the highest, most unique and well preserved Roman fort in Britain. The entire site has archaeology showing constant habitation and land use going back to the Mesolithic period (the period between the Upper Paleolithic and the Neolithic – between 11,500 years ago and 5,500 years ago. The time period during which hunter gatherers turned into farmers – we found a mesolithic arrowhead last year) through iron age settlements, the Roman period, post roman – early medieval (the Dark Ages), the whole of the Medieval, Tudor, Georgian, Victorian,  20th Century periods right up to today.

I am not aware of any other single site that has so many layers of historical and archaeological context in one small area. Add that to the archaeology of the rest of the valley and you have a unique story of a constantly changing but well preserved landscape to explore.”  

John Haydon

John Haydon is a retired senior bank manager who has worked in London, Edinburgh, Paris and Carlisle with all forms and sizes of incorporated and non-incorporated businesses, trusts and partnerships. He is interested in all eras of history and has a degree in Economic and Social History from St. Andrews University and an MBA from Edinburgh University. He has previously been a governor at two schools and a non-executive director of a housing association and is currently also a trustee of Cumbria Waste Management Environment Trust. He acts as lead trustee for Epiacum Heritage on governance, policy, legal and fundraising.

Judith Hardy

Fran Breen

If you’d like to find out more about becoming a trustee or adviser to the charity, click here.

Many individuals and organisations are involved with the management of Epiacum. We would particularly like to thank the following: Heritage Lottery Fund, North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Partnership, Historic England, and Natural England

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