Dr Emma J. Wells

Dr Emma J. Wells


Dr Emma J. Wells is an historian of religious and architectural history, specialising particularly in the medieval and early modern eras. She is a passion advocate of the buildings history approach which seeks to understand people and the past through their surroundings. Her expertise covers everything from parish churches and cathedrals, the saints, pilgrimage and stained glass, to historic buildings in the modern age. Emma is the author of Pilgrim Routes of the British Isles (Hale, 2016) and is the midst of finalising another on the senses in the medieval church for OUP. Her next book, Heaven On Earth: The Lives & Legacies of the World’s Greatest Cathedrals will be published by Head of Zeus (2020/21).

Emma writes often and reviews for newspapers and magazines, including BBC History, History Today, the Times Literary Supplement, History Revealed and BBC Countryfile. A lively broadcaster and frequent acclaimed public speaker at literary festivals, academic conferences and corporate lectures, Emma’s experience also stretches beyond the world of religion and architecture, having lectured in archaeology, history, and art. She wrote and presented a three-part documentary for Viral History on St Cuthbert’s Way and appears often as a talking head as well as podcast contributor, with appearances on History Hit’s Art Detective, History Extra, and as a ‘Don’ on BBC Radio 4’s The 3rd Degree.

Emma gained her PhD from Durham University, for which she was awarded the 2011-12 British Archaeological Association Ochs Scholarship and Society for Church Archaeology Research Grant. She is now a lecturer and Programme Director of English Building History and Parish Church Studies at the University of York, and a Research Associate within the Department of Archaeology.

She gained her racing licence aged 18 and previously raced with Formula Woman.

Dr Emma J. Wells @Emma_J_Wells

Well done, @StAlbansCath 👏🏼👏🏼

Sorry all - we are working on a timing issue with Blackboard. New starting time 9.45, apologies

I’m a little bit overexcited. Six years in the delivery, 20 years in the dreaming, 2,000 years in the making… @Sarahmchaden @RevGaryGrady @Emma_J_Wells @beckyclark83 @BishopWorcester @BishGloucester @bptewkesbury @giles_fraser @News4Cheltenham @sayone4me @RevdJosieG #cheltenham https://twitter.com/pipandjims/status/1390628527528189955

Welcome to Day 2 of #PaSymp21! After Keith Snell's inspiring reflections on post-Covid parish studies & lively discussions on the politics of poor relief, we are looking forward to 5 Saturday panels @WarwickHistory @HRCWarwick @ElhFriends @ParishResources @BALHNews @VCH_London

Been playing with #medieval art. Really enjoying putting a modern twist on these designs! And they look even better on apparel and accessories 😏

All being Covid-well, this majestic delight will be visited by my MA in English Building History students in August during their residential. If that’s not a reason to apply for one of the final places on the Masters, I don’t know what is! See: https://www.york.ac.uk/building

#TodaysLoveliness: St Martha (on the Hill), Chilworth. C12 remains, rebuilt 1848-50 by Henry Woodyer. On Pilgrims’ Way and featured in 1944 film, A Canterbury Tale. Thus, may been built as beacon to assist travellers or pilgrims to Canterbury or Winchester cathedrals.
📸 Tim Gage

All @engcathedrals are to get one, by order of me. https://twitter.com/RevThomasSander/status/1390319845443620867

#TodaysLoveliness: St Mary, Orchardleigh. On moated island at Orchardleigh Park Estate. Largely C13 with buttressed early C19 north chapel, south porch; fabric rebuilt by Sir George Gilbert Scott, for Rev. W. A. Duckworth, supervised by J. O. Scott, 1878.
📸 Nabokov

The 2021 @CVACinDURHAM Architecture Lecture - 'Revising Pevsner The Buildings of England: County Durham: 2021' with Martin Roberts takes place via Zoom on 18th May 4pm 🏦🏰🏚️🏡
Book your spot here: https://tinyurl.com/3kvutd8p
#architecture #lovedurham #Pevsner

We may have been looking at the World Heritage Site at a distance recently, but the @durhamcathedral towers that we see haven't always looked as they do now! What changes have taken place? For some #Wednesdaywisdom click here: https://tinyurl.com/462amj8b #lovedurham #architecture

We're finding it a struggle to get out for a midweek long walk, especially with the drop in temperature.

We're off to grab a cuppa and share 100 miles (in 20 mins) of the St Cuthbert Way with @Emma_J_Wells and @DrJaninaRamirez 💛

Why don't you join us?


Just realised @CuriosityStream’s ‘Ancient Engineering: Secrets of Notre-Dame’, produced by @offthefence, is now available to watch. Such faces are pulled throughout. And I think I spy @DrSamWillis, too!

#TodaysLoveliness: St Andrew’s, Frenze. Largely deserted village with current church C14 nave with modern bellcote. Known for brasses of men and women in medieval dress + poppy-heads including two monkeys. Closed in 1976 + now in hands of @TheCCT.
📸 Haydn Brown/Evelyn Simak

I'm taking some time away from #twitter this week to focus on some VERY EXCITING projects I've got in the pipeline with @Emma_J_Wells including #medieval merch, courses, lectures & our new @Brepols publication series...watch this space...#medievalist

Unfortunate circumstances but @DrRuthNugent will be as fantastic, I assure you!

Please do feel free to RT and share! #twitterstorians #medievaltwitter

A bumper month @is_medieval seminar series! Dr Meriem Pages on 19th on Sibylla and Daenerys in History, Popular Medievalism + Beyond (https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/151067124837) & @writingmedieval on 26th w/ accuracy, modern media + historical imagination: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/151934228367

#TodaysLoveliness: St James, Woodhead. c800 feet up at head of the Longdendale Valley, 1487 given as foundation date but current building mid C18 plus south porch added in 1924. Navvies who died during construction of the Woodhead railway tunnel buried here.
📸 Jonathan Clitheroe

#TodaysLoveliness: St James and St Paul, Marton. c1370. Restored by J M Derick in 1850 and by William Butterfield in 1871. Referred to by Nikolaus Pevsner as 'one of the architectural gems of Cheshire'.
📸 Poliphilo