The Creative Team

The Imagining History Programme is devised by a team of people who are passionate about and experienced in developing the creative minds of young writers. We draw inspiration from a wide range fields of expertise.


Me1rezaCreative & Executive Director/Arts-Educator

Alan Caig Wilson MA MFA Adv Dip Drama –

Alan has an MA in Psychology from St Andrews University, an Advanced Diploma in Drama from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and in 2003 graduated in MFA with Distinction in Theatre Direction from Birkbeck University of London. 

As a performer, director, creative producer and teacher, he has worked in theatre of all kinds, TV, film, Music Theatre and Live Art Performance. This has taken him all over mainland Europe, the UK and to India, the US and Japan. His performance and directorial work at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival has won him and his collaborators two Fringe Firsts and a Capital Award. At Theatre Workshop in Edinburgh, he created work as part of a ground-breaking European Union funded project – Positive Voices –  exploring the hidden voices of a range of communities across the City of Edinburgh – including people living with HIV/AIDS and young LGBTQ people.

A veteran of Arts Council England’s Creative Partnerships programme, he has worked in collaboration with a range of schools in Essex and Suffolk as an arts-curriculum consultant. He adapted two early works of Sir Walter Scott (The Lay of the Last Minstrel and Waverley, or ’tis sixty years since) for performance at the Borders Book Festival. Since 2014 he has been Director of The Young Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction. In 2015, he established The Imagining History Programme as the practical wing of YWSP – as a way of introducing young creative minds to the riches of their historical worlds.

Liz F HeadshotDevelopment Associate/Writer-Educator

Elizabeth Ferretti MA –

Liz is a professional writer of fiction and non-fiction, who wishes she had started writing earlier in life. Since 2015 Liz has co-developed and co-delivered immersive writing experiences in extraordinary locations for The Young Walter Scott Prize/Imagining History Programme. 

“The historic houses and landscapes of Britain are full of stories,” Liz says, “it’s wonderful to see young writers so inspired by them. The best part of the day? Watching the young writers immersed in their creative spaces, completely focussed on the imaginary worlds they are creating.”

Art Historical Adviser/Arts-Educator

Roxanne Matthews

Historical Adviser

Dr Dina Gusejnova, University of Sheffield

Dina Gusejnova is a lecturer in Modern History at the University of SheffieldShe is the author of European Elites and Ideas of Empire, 1917-57 (2016) which traces how the collapse of empires in continental Europe affected ideas of Europe. She is also the editor of Cosmpolitanism in Conflict, Imperial Encounters from the Seven Years War to the Cold War (2018). Dina’s current research concentrates on ideas of citizenship and the experience of statelessness during the Second World War.

She is always keen to think about the past through different media and in collaboration with artists and writers. She has authored a programme for BBC Radio 4, Tarpaulin – A Biography, about the many lives of a common fabric. She has also given a TedEx talk at both Tate Modern in London and the Musee D’Orsay in Paris. She blogs for BBC World Histories and for the Journal of the History of Ideas. Her current preoccupation is with the medium of documentary film, a genre which holds much promise for the historian.

By engaging with history, we open our eyes to the multifaceted nature of our world: the paths not taken, things that might have been, the factors which led to things as they are now, a universe of peculiar but forgotten characters, of past dreams and expectations.


Stephanie Haxton 2017/18 (Cornwall)Steph NCBF

Steph Haxton is an historian, a specialist in the Tudor and Stuart eras, with a particular interest in the Civil War in Cornwall. With a background in historical re-enactment, you could say that she has lived the history as well as researched it. Steph is also a playwright, author and loves word-smithing in all its forms. She has worked as an educational manager for English Heritage at Pendennis Castle in Falmouth.

She is the author of a trilogy of historical novels set in Cornwall, Exposed to All Villanies, A Cord of Three Strand and To Untie A Sealed Knot. All three novels were nominated in the prestigious Cornish Gorsedh Holyer an Gof awards, To Untie a Sealed Knot becoming a prizewinning novel in 2018.

Steph says, History is about real people, ordinary folk as well as the famous ones.There are so many stories that start from forgotten facts and every one of them deserves to be told

  • Elspeth Murray 2015/16 (Scotland)
  • Lauren Pope 2016/17 (Scotland)
  • Carly Brown 2016/17 (Scotland)

Associate experts

  • Professor David Munro MBE – Geographer-in-Residence, Drumlanrig Castle
  • Captain Stewart Lee – Master of Trinity House, Edinburgh


Alan Caig Wilson is also Director of The Young Walter Scott Prize. Read more about this  unique creative writing prize for teenagers here.

The Imagining History Programme is funded by the Buccleuch Living Heritage Trust.

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