Alice, Veronica and Holly.

Alice, Veronica and Holly.



Alice Toso

York logo


I undertook a BSc (Hon) in Archaeology at the University of Bologna 2007-2011 and I completed an MSc in Paleopathology at Durham University 2012-2013, partially funded by the Departmental Anniversary Bursary 2012. My MSc dissertation focused on the health and overall fitness of two medieval populations from Asti, in the north of Italy, using non-specific stress markers as indicators of social stratification. After my MSc I got awarded a Leonardo Scholarship of three months that I spend at the Department of Anthropology and Life Sciences of the University of Coimbra. The project involved the creation of 3D models in order to test the sexing potential of the distal part of the humerus. After the conclusion of the Leonardo scholarship I worked as Research Assistant on a Forensic Anthropology project in Porto, Portugal. After this experience I applied for the scholarship on the White Rose ‘Faith in Food, Food in Faith’ network. My PhD will consider the relation between Food and Faith in the medieval Iberian Peninsula under the supervision of Dr. Michelle Alexander of University of York and Dr. Iona McCleery of University of Leeds.


During my Undergraduate degree I took part in several excavations (Italy, Spain, India, UK) focusing mainly on Bronze Age and Iron Age. As part of my master dissertation I studied two groups of medieval skeletons coming from Asti,northern Italy. This project included all the steps of the human remains processing (washing, drying, marking, inventory, anthropological and paleopathological recording).

After the graduation I have got awarded a Leonardo scholarship that allowed me to work three months at the Department of Anthropology and Life Sciences at the University of Coimbra, Portugal. During this period I designed and developed a project focusing on the sexing potential of the distal part of the humerus and in particular of the olecranon fossa. A Laser scan was used to create 3D models of 200 humeri in order to take measurements with more accuracy and precision.

When the Leonardo project was concluded, I got offered a Research Assistant position in a Forensic Anthropology project called BoneMedLeg, developed at the Institute of Legal Medicine of Porto in collaboration with the University of Lisbon and the Faculty of Dentistry of the University of Porto. During this one-year contract, I was part of a team focusing on the building of a new identified skeletal collection with human remains coming from the cemeteries of Porto. Washing, drying, marking, inventory and anthropological measurements were undertaken. Several methods were also tested with the aim of advancing the accuracy of the sexing and ageing methodologies.

You can view my Academia profile here


Holly J. Hunt-Watts Leeds logo


I completed my undergraduate degree at the University of Exeter with a first class honours in Archaeology with Forensic Science BSc and continued on to be awarded with a distinction in my following MSc in Bioarchaeology (Human Osteology). During my masters I trained under the guidance of Dr Christopher Knüsel and became passionate about Osteoarchaeology and the knowledge which it provides concerning health and wellbeing in the past. Following this, I applied for the third scholarship on the White Rose ‘Faith in Food, Food in Faith’ network in order to continue my work on human health in archaeological populations. However, this came with a twist- I would now also be looking at modern nutritional health.

Interested in the possibility of producing archaeological research relevant to modern issues, I took the scholarship and am now working with the title “Food and Nutrient Intake in Low-Income Families: A Comparative Study”. I will be examining the phenomenon of food poverty through time, from the 18th century to modern Britain, using historical records, skeletal analysis, and methods from nutritional epidemiology. During my PhD I will be supervised by Prof Janet Cade from the University of Leeds Nutritional Epidemiology Group and Prof Dawn Hadley, head of the University of Sheffield Archaeology Department.


I have around 5 months experience on archaeological excavation working on a variety of sites. I have worked as a supervisor at the Roman site of Ipplepen in Devon, and at the site of Gunwalloe in Cornwall both organised by the University of Exeter. My stratigraphic illustrations for Gunwalloe are featured in ‘Wood I.E.E., 2013: Gunwalloe Through the Ages: Middle Bronze Age to the 12th century AD, Lizard Peninsula, Cornwall. Evaluation Report for works carried out 2011-2012. Rural Development Agency and National Trust.’

I also worked for South West Archaeology commercial unit for two summers, during which I excavated a series of Bronze Age round houses near Falmouth, gained extensive experience performing geophysical surveys on land across Cornwall in advance of wind turbine projects, performed walkover surveys of Exmoor, and conducted desk-based assessments.

As well as fieldwork I have extensive experience in the curation and cataloguing of human skeletal remains, as I both volunteered and took a paid curation internship at the University of Exeter to organise and record their collection from two medieval cemetery sites.

You can view my linkedin profile here:



Veronica Aniceti

Sheffield logo


I undertook a BSc degree in Archaeological Heritage Science at the University of Siena (2007-2010). In July 2013, I obtained an MSc degree in Archaeology and Science of Antiquity from the same University. My dissertation focused on a faunal assemblage from a medieval site in southern Tuscany, where I have long been working under the supervision of Professor Giovanna Bianchi. In 2012 I attended a summer school in Zooarchaology in Feltre (Belluno, Italy) coordinated by Professor Sauro Gelichi (University of Venice).

In 2013 I came to Sheffield for attending an MSc in Osteoarchaeology. My dissertation focused on the analysis of faunal remains from two Roman sites located in southern Tuscany: Scoglietto and Spolverino (Grosseto, Italy). During my PhD I will be supervised by Umberto Albarella (Univeristy of Sheffield) and Martin Carver (University of York). My project seeks to analyse differences and similarities in animal husbandry between the Muslim and Christian periods in Sicily through the analysis of faunal assemblages.


My experience at the University of Siena provided me with a solid knowledge of medieval social and economic dynamics in Italy, as well as in the rest of Europe; in particular, my studies and excavations focused on the period of transition between the Low and the High Middle Ages.

Furthermore, during this period I spent four months per year digging at several medieval archaeological sites. The excavation experience provided me with a solid knowledge of field archaeology and with the appropriate organisational and interactive skills for working in a team and for dealing with different specialists.

During my training at the University of Siena I became interested in the analysis of animal remains. Fascinated by this subject, I started studying it on my own. In February 2012, in order to broaden my knowledge of Zooarchaeology, I spent six months at the University of Sheffield as a visiting student. There, I spent most of my time in the laboratory, working under the supervision of Umberto Albarella and his research team. My experience in this dynamic international environment further intensified my interest in the subject; for this reason, I decided to attend a second MSc degree in Osteoarcheology at the University of Sheffield.

This course expanded even more my analytical skills and I was confronted with the pros and cons of different zooarcheological methods. In the meantime, I also had the chance to work at the Zooarchaeology Research Lab; the job consisted in the re-organisation of the animal and mollusc reference collection and it gave me further confidence in the organisation and use of the material. Furthermore, I am participating as a demonstrator to the basic and advanced short courses in Zooarchaeology organised by the laboratory.

Apart from this, I am taking actively part in the summer and winter schools organised in Italy by the Alberese Archaeological project, which seeks to reconstruct the development of settlements and trade in southern Tuscany between the mid-Republican period and the Late Antiquity. In particular, I am responsible for the organisation and delivery of the Zooarchaeology course.



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