Home About Me Events Blog Page Gallery Contact Me

Biography

Thanks so much for visiting my website and blog!  As you might gather my name is Simon Elliott and I'm an historian and archaeologist based in Kent. I am just completing a PhD at the University of Kent in Archaeology where I'm studying the military presence in Britain during the Roman occupation (with a particular focus on the Classis Britannica regional fleet).  I have a Masters Degree in War Studies from KCL and a Masters Degree in Archaeology from UCL, both completed part time in the past decade, and an original BSc in History and Politics. For a day job I run a Public Relations company looking after the communications interests of a variety of corporate clients.  The skill set I use both as an historian/ archaeologist and being a PR practitioner is derived from my former career as an aerospace and defence writer, for example having been a journalist at both Jane’s Defence Weekly and Flight International, and having similarly worked on national newspapers.


I have had a number of articles published regarding my research on military history and archaeology in publications such as History Today, RUSI Journal and British Archaeology (links attached), and my first 'full fat' history book was published through The History Press in August last year. Entitled 'Sea Eagles of Empire: The Classis Britannica and the Battles for Britain', it tells the story of the Roman Navy in Britain.  In that regard, the Roman war machine comprised both land and naval forces and although the former has been studied extensively, less has been written and understood about the latter (and in particular the regional navies which actively participated in most military operations and policed the seas and rivers of the Empire).  Until the mid-3rd century, in a British context, this navy was the Classis Britannica – a strong fighting force in its own right.  Its composition, ship types, roles, tactics and technology have never been studied at length until the publication of my book.  Meanwhile my next book, through Oxbow Books, is published on the 14th of August this year and is entitled 'Empire State: How the Roman Military Built an Empire'.  This tells the story of the Roman military in all of its activities except fighting, so for example administration, engineering and construction and running industry.  Finally I have just completed writing my third book, which tells the story of the Scottish campaigns of Septimius Severus.  Called 'Septimius Severus in Scotland: The Northern Campaigns of the First Hammer of the Scots', this will be published by Greenhill Books in January 2018.


I speak and lecture regularly and widely on my research to history societies and archaeological groups, and most recently presented my 'Ragstone to Riches' presentation in the Guildhall in the City of London where I explained how the Roman city was built using ragstone quarried in the upper Medway Valley where I live.  I am also the co-Director of a Roman villa excavation and regularly carry out other archaeological field work.  


Outside of history and archaeology I am active wargamer and modeller (which will regularly feature on this blog), am a passionate rugby fan, equally love the louder end of rock music, and enjoy taking my golden doodle Hector for a walk!