Although I am interested in various aspects of military history, I specialise in 17th century fortifications and sieges, and am particularly interested in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms (1639-1652), and the works of great French military engineer, Marshall Vauban.
I have written two books, London in the Civil War (Partizan Press, 2008) and The English Civil War Defences of London (The Stuart Press, 2014). I have contributed a chapter about Wenceslaus Hollar's illustrations of fortifications and sieges to Perspectives on Wenceslaus Hollar (due to be published by Brepols this year) . At the end of the summer, my third book, Civil War London: a military history of London under Charles I and Oliver Cromwell, will be published by Helion as part of their Century of the Soldier series (also see London’s role during the ‘English’ Civil War – overlooked? and Introducing www.vauban.co.uk).
Much of my research is undertaken ‘in the field’: understanding the topography of a site is just as important as a knowledge of the events which surround it. I have travelled extensively throughout the British Isles and across Europe, and as far afield as North America and South Africa visiting fortifications and siege-sites. I was honoured with the award of Fellowship of the Royal Geographical Society in 2013 and am part of the Society’s Discovering Britain project.
Regarded as “the one expert on London's civil war defences”, my expertise has been called upon to assist with archaeological investigations within the capital, most recently providing advice to the post-excavation stage of the excavations at the British Museum which uncovered a section of London’s defensive rampart and ditch. If you would like to discuss such projects, please contact me via the contact form.
I have recently been investigating the siege-works of Newark-upon-Trent (published in Military History Monthly # 59; also see Defending Nottinghamshire by Mike Osborne).
I have also contributed articles to Fortified Places, the London Topographical Society, The Pike and Shot Society and London Archaeologist.
I give lectures and talks to a variety of audiences, including archaeological societies and local history groups. If you would like me to talk to your organisation, please contact me via the contact form.