Graham Ritchie was an archaeologist from the heart of Pictland in Angus, who visited many Pictish stones as a schoolboy in Arbroath. An archaeological training at the University of Edinburgh under Professor Stuart Piggott fostered an interest in early antiquarians. This was followed by a brief period of post-graduate study, before apprenticeship with the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland in 1965.
He worked for many years on the archaeological aspects of the Inventory of Argyll, including the excavation of a number of sites ranging from neolithic to early historic in date. He helped to set up the Afforestable Land Survey within the Royal Commission in 1989. He became Depute Curator of the National Monuments Record of Scotland from 1991 to 1995. He was then appointed Head of Archaeology within the Commission.
With his wife, Anna, he wrote the general survey Scotland: archaeology and early history (1981 revised 1991) and The Oxford Archaeological Guide to Scotland (1998).