Scott Timpany


  • Archaeology Institute UHI, East Road, Orkney College UHI

    KW15 1LX Kirkwall

    United Kingdom

  • United Kingdom

  • Orkney College UHI East Road, Kirkwall, Orkney KW15 1LX

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

I am interested in supervisng any project related to palaeoecology and in particular in research areas similar to my own.

  • 24 Citations
  • 4 h-Index

Research output per year

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Personal profile

Research expertise

My research interests lie in palaeoeocology and the adoption of these techniques to inform on the interactions of past communities and their environment, together with utilising these methods to investigate the impact of large-scale environmental change on communities in particular focussing on their resilience and adaptation to such changes.

I have a strong interest in submerged landscapes and have investigated intertidal peat and submerged forest sites in the Severn Estuary, Bristol Channel, Sussex, Orkney and the Western Isles. Within these now maritime settings I am interested in the rate and scale of environmental change triggered by rising relative sea-level and the reconstruction of former woodland and physiognomy gained through the study of submerged forest woodland remnants - a direct link back to the past. Paleoecological investigation of these settings also allows for the understaning of how communities utilised these environments in the past and how peoples activities changed as the landscape changed around them.

A further area of recent research has been the palaeoenvironmental investigation of burnt mound sites in order to see what impact the use of hot-stone technology from such sites had on the local environment, whether there is evidence for woodland management and/or deliberate selection of certain tree types for fuel wood and the construction of troughs. I have investigated such sites in Ireland, Northern Ireland and in teh Northern Isles. The use of anthracological (charcoal) analysis in archaeology is widely over-looked and together with using this technique in the study of burnt mounds I am currently applying it to investigate wood fuel selection for cremation pyres in the Bronze Age and the cultural values placed on trees (and woodland) by past communities.

My current research interests includes the investigation of former lochs in the Northern Isles and Scotland in order to provide past evidence for changing water quality (e.g. euotophication) and how this may have impacted upon communities, together with their use as a source for past palaeopollution records (e.g. heavy metals) and landscape change. A recent project on these themes has looked at the impact of later prehistoric and Norse communities on the landscape of the Northern Isles through activities such as metalworking and agriculture from sediments taken from a former loch (now drained).

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Research Output

  • 24 Citations
  • 4 h-Index
  • 10 Article
  • 1 Book
  • 1 Chapter
  • 1 Doctoral Thesis (not awarded by UHI)

Later Prehistoric and Norse Communities in the Northern Isles: Multi-Proxy Environmental Investigations on Orkney

Timpany, S., Mighall, T., Foster, I., Martinaz Cortizas, A., Owen, O., Krus, A. & Kamerling, I., 10 Aug 2020, In : Environmental Archaeology.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
  • 23 Downloads (Pure)

    A Palaeoenvironmental Investigation of Two Prehistoric Burnt Mound Sites in Northern Ireland

    Wheeler, J., Timpany, S., Mighall, T. & Scott, L., 1 Aug 2018, In : Geoarchaeology. 31, 6, p. 506-529 24 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 4 Citations (Scopus)
    40 Downloads (Pure)

    Root and branch: A community archaeology and palaeoecology approach to the investigation of a submerged forest at Pett Level, Sussex, UK

    Timpany, S. & Band, L., 5 Dec 2018, Into the Woods. Overlapping perspectives on the history of ancient forest. Paradis-Grenouillet, S., Aspe, C. & Burri, S. (eds.). Editions QUAE, 23 p.

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

    Searching for the Origins of Bere Barley: a Geometric Morphometric Approach to Cereal Landrace Recognition in Archaeology

    Wallace, M., Bonhomme, V., Russell, J., Stillman, E., George, T. S., Ramsay, L., Wishart, J., Timpany, S., Bull, H., Booth, A. & Martin, P., 16 Nov 2018, In : Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory. 25, p. 1-18 18 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 5 Citations (Scopus)
    318 Downloads (Pure)

    Vegetation Changes and Woodland Management Associated with a Prehistoric to Medieval Burnt Mound Complex at Ballygawley, Northern Ireland

    Mighall, T., Timpany, S., Wheeler, J., Bailey, L. & Bamforth, M., 1 Aug 2018, In : Environmental Archaeology. 23, 3, p. 267-285 19 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 1 Citation (Scopus)
    10 Downloads (Pure)

    ‘Ava’: a Beaker-associated woman from a cist at Achavanich, Highland, and the story of her (re-)discovery and subsequent study

    Hoole, M., Sheridan, A., Boyle, A., Booth, T., Brace, S., Diekmann, Y., Olalde, I., Thomas, M. G., Barnes, I., Evans, J., Chenery, C., Sloane, H., Morrison, H., Fraser, S., Timpany, S. & Hamilton, D., 30 Nov 2018, In : Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland. 147, p. 73-118 45 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • Open Access
  • 2 Citations (Scopus)
    43 Downloads (Pure)


    • 2 Types of Public engagement and outreach - Public lecture/debate/seminar

    Training: Pett Level Submerged Forest

    Scott Timpany (Interviewee)

    23 Sep 201625 Sep 2016

    Activity: OtherTypes of Public engagement and outreach - Public lecture/debate/seminar

    Woodlands under the waves: investigating submerged forests in the Northern and Western Isles, Scotland

    Scott Timpany (Speaker)

    5 Nov 20166 Nov 2016

    Activity: OtherTypes of Public engagement and outreach - Public lecture/debate/seminar