I am a Hull historian with a dedicated interest in the fishing families of my home-port's Hessle Road Fishing Community and its related, dangerous Deepsea Arctic Trawling Industry. My focus is primarily upon the people and their unique culture.
In 1974 I began conducting a social photo-documentary study of the community; had 20 solo photo exhibitions in the UK and USA; I then moved on to become an author (1985) and have produced six books about the Hessle Roaders (the one about 'Superstitions' being my most popular internationally); in 1989 I became Chair of the STAND campaign to save Hull's Fishing Heritage and helped launch the annual Lost Trawlermen's Day service [I am now only an ordinary member of this group]; in 1995 I began working with Dovedale Studio to produce six VHS videos about Hull's fishing heritage - 'Arctic Trawlermen', 'Three-day Millionaires', and 'Hull Fish Dock' etc - these are now for sale on Amazon as DVDs - please visit http://www.amazon.co.uk/shops/alecgill; and, now that I have retired from the University of Hull (since 1st Oct 2012), I plan to produce and build upon this series of DVDs and continue with my on-going research and writing.
In 2009 I was awarded an MBE at Buckingham Palace by H.R.H. Prince Charles for my above work and the following year I was privileged to receive an Honorary Doctor at the University Hull.