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*Archaeology News*
*Metal Detecting News*
*Treasure Hunting News*

This website is brought to you by a team of very passionate historians and metal detectorists. We are not part of the grab it and run brigade.
History is extremely important to us and recording finds and working alongside archaeologists is of utmost importance.

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Lenient sentence given to metal detecting thief


A METAL dectector enthusiast has been convicted of theft in so-called ‘nighthawking’ trips in the Horncastle area.

Kevin Thomas Lomas, 40, of Scholes, Rotherham, faced nine allegations of theft between January 1 and July 8 2011, one allegation of going equipped for theft on June 5 and two allegations of possession of criminal property at his home on July 8.

He denied all the offences but was convicted of eight offences of theft and of going equipped for theft by District Judge John Stobart at Skegness Magistrates Court last week.

Lomas was ordered to forfeit his metal detecting equipment - worth around £1,300 - and was given a 12 months conditional discharge. He was also ordered to pay £400 in costs.

The judge said he was being lenient due to Lomas losing his equipment.

Prosecution said that between 2010 and 2012, there had been reports of 11 incidents of holes being dug on farmland in Lincolnshire, averaging 25 holes in each incident.

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Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Digging up history at Taylor-Bray Farm in Yarmouth Port



Volunteers led by a professional archaeologist in September will follow up on historic findings from a dig at Taylor-Bray Farm in Yarmouth Port last year. They will investigate four specific areas in hopes of finding the site’s first 1640s farmhouse and prehistoric Native American campsites.

Archaeologist Craig Chartiers, who directed last year’s successful dig that uncovered 2,300 artifacts, said in a phone interview, ”We could see the outline of a home.” That home belonged to Richard Taylor, one of the first settlers who came to Yarmouth from the Plymouth Colony in 1639.

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Saturday, 25 August 2012

Museum in the money with gold coin hoard


Museum in the money with gold coin hoard

A rare Iron Age coin hoard is on its way to St Neots Museum after a last-minute fundraising appeal secured £22,000 in grants and donations.

The museum, in New Street, will make its biggest-ever purchase when 68 gold coins – discovered by a metal detector in Kimbolton in October 2010 – arrive next year.

The British Museum in London had given the museum’s curator Liz Davies a deadline of the end of July to raise the £22,000 purchase price before the coins were sold on the open market.

After launching an appeal at the start of July, the museum landed £11,000 from the V&A Museum Purchase Grant Fund and a string of donations from residents and community groups.

Full Story

Friday, 24 August 2012

Ramboll finds Saxon remains at ISG site


Ramboll is overseeing extensive archaeological work that is uncovering Saxon remains at a 1.3ha Ipswich housing site, which will be developed by ISG.

The project for Genesis Housing Association will create a mixed-use development in the Suffolk town.

An extensive archaeological excavation is under way on the site in preparation for the start of construction work.  The excavation is uncovering evidence of middle and late Saxon Ipswich, as well as the ‘lost’ cemetery, and perhaps church, of St Augustine.

Ipswich was one of the earliest, and most important, towns to develop in England during the 7th century, and the work is designed to reveal more evidence of early settlement beside the ford which once crossed the River Orwell.

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Historic search for King Richard III begins in Leicester


The University of Leicester and Leicester City Council, in association with the Richard III Society, have joined forces to begin a search for the mortal remains of King Richard III.



On Saturday 25 August 2012 – five hundred years after King Richard III was buried in Leicester - the historic archaeological project will begin with the aim of discovering whether Britain’s last Plantagenet King lies buried in Leicester City Centre.

The project represents the first ever search for the lost grave of an anointed King of England.

In 1485 King Richard III was defeated at the battle of Bosworth. His body, stripped and despoiled, was brought to Leicester where he was buried in the church of the Franciscan Friary, known as the Greyfriars. Over time the exact whereabouts of the Greyfriars became lost.

Led by University of Leicester Archaeological Services (ULAS), experts will be seeking to locate the Greyfriars site and discover whether the remains of Richard III may still be found.

Richard Buckley, Co-Director of the Archaeology Service at the University of Leicester, said: “The big question for us is determining the whereabouts of the church on the site and also where in the church the body was buried. Although in many ways finding the remains of the king is a long-shot, it is a challenge we shall undertake enthusiastically. There is certainly potential for the discovery of burials within the area, based on previous discoveries and the postulated position of the church."  

The project's small but dedicated team has undertaken map regression analysis to identify the likely site of the church where Richard was buried - currently in use as a car park for council offices. Ground Penetrating Radar is being employed to help find the best places to cut into the ground.

Councillor Piara Singh Clair, Assistant Mayor for Culture, Leisure and Sports, said: “Richard III is a key figure in the region’s history. This is an exciting opportunity potentially to discover a missing piece of our historical jigsaw.”



Philippa Langley, screenwriter and member of the Richard III Society, is one of the guiding lights behind the project. She said:  "This search for Richard's grave is only one aspect of the on-going research effort to discover the real Richard III.

“After his defeat his reputation suffered enormous disparagement at the hands of his opponents and successors, the Tudors. The challenge lies in uncovering the truth behind the myths.

“Richard III is a charismatic figure who attracts tremendous interest. Partly because he has been so much maligned in past centuries, and partly because he occupies a pivotal place in English history.

“The continuing interest in Richard means that many fables have grown up around his grave. Although local people like Alderman Herrick in 1612 knew precisely where he was buried – and Herrick was able to show visitors a handsome stone pillar marking the king's grave in his garden - nevertheless at the same time unlikely stories were spread of Richard's bones being dug up and thrown into the river Soar. Other fables, equally discredited, claimed that his coffin was used as a horse-trough.

“This archaeological work offers a golden opportunity to learn more about medieval Leicester as well as about Richard III's last resting place – and, if he is found, to re-inter his remains with proper solemnity in Leicester Cathedral. A filmed record will be made of the entire historic project.”

Richard Taylor, Director of Corporate Affairs at the University of Leicester, added:

“If remains are found that are suspected to be those of Richard III, they will be subject to DNA analysis at the University of Leicester where DNA ‘fingerprinting’ was originally discovered.



“As one of Europe's oldest cities, the story of Leicester is a long and complex one, with people from many different cultures having shaped the urban fabric and contributed to arts, industry and politics on a national and international level.  The University of Leicester, working in partnership with Leicester City Council and in association with the Richard III Society, is proud to have a role in telling this story, employing its expertise in archaeology, history and genetics.”

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Operation Totem, 41 year-old man convicted


Operation Totem was launched in February 2011 to combat illegal metal detecting in the Horncastle area. It has since been rolled out countywide.

The operation was commenced to address reports and concerns from members of farming community who were suffering from trespassers carrying out illegal metal detecting, sometimes referred to as Nighthawking. Much of this was going on during the night. Significant damage was being caused to crops and artefacts were being stolen from out of the ground.

We worked in partnership with English Heritage who were able to provide the police with support and advice on aspects of heritage crime.

This case commenced when a search warrant was sworn out at court to search premises in Scholes, near Rotherham. Information was obtained regarding the defendant Kevin Thomas Lomas aged 41 of The Grange, at Scholes. The warrant was executed by a team of officers from Horncastle assisted by South Yorkshire Police and English Heritage

During the execution of the warrant a large quantity of coins and historic artefacts were seized along with a quantity of metal detecting equipment.

Lomas was arrested and taken to Rotherham Police Station. He was subsequently interviewed and released on police bail to attend Skegness Police Station at a later date. Over the next 12 months in depth and lengthy enquires were carried out by the Operation Totem team to identify the property seized and gather evidence. Some items were taken to the British Museum and examined by experts.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) were consulted and worked with the team providing legal and charging advice.

At the conclusion of the investigation Lomas was charged with 12 offences relating to the investigation.

He appeared before the District Judge John Stobbart at Skegness Magistrates Court on Tuesday 21st August 2012. He was found guilty of eight counts of theft and one offence of going equipped to steal.

An order was made forcing him to forfeit his metal detection equipment and associated items. He received a 12 month condition discharge and was ordered to pay £400 towards costs.

Sergeant Alasdair Booth of Horncastle Police, Lincolnshire led the operation, he said,

“Operation Totem was introduced to deal with concerns raised by members of the farming community who were suffering from persons illegally using metal detectors on their property. This was resulting in significant damage to crops and the loss of unique historic artefacts.”

“A great deal of work was carried out by the officers involved in the operation to bring offenders to justice and to send out a clear message that illegal metal detecting and heritage crime will be taken seriously. Many people seem to hold the opinion that metal detecting is a harmless hobby and feel that they have a right to roam and use their equipment at will, where they like, without permission or any likelihood of facing the consequences of their illegal actions. Whilst there are many responsible people who legitimately enjoy metal detecting with the permission of land owners, whilst using the proper channels to register and dispose of items that they may find, there are a small minority who persist in operating outside the law.”

“I would like to thank our partner agencies, English Heritage, The British Museum and the CPS for their help throughout the operation. Mr Lomas has lost his equipment a number of artefacts, paid costs and now has a criminal record as result of his actions. Behaviour such as his removes part of our heritage and will not be tolerated.”

Mark Holmes, Senior Crown Prosecutor, CPS East Midlands said,

"This case was unusual and not straightforward to prosecute. However, thanks to joint working with the police and English Heritage, by the time the case came to court, the evidence against Mr Lomas was compelling.”

“It is important that the nighthawking 'community' sit up and take notice that this is not a harmless activity, but a criminal activity that robs us all of our historical heritage.”

“If it takes a prosecution and one of these individuals to walk away from court with a criminal record for this point to be made, then so be it. Nighthawking is a crime and where it is detected, the CPS will work with our partners to ensure the perpetrators face the consequences of their criminal actions."

Mark Harrison, National Policing and Crime Advisor Heritage Crime Programme & Alliance to Reduce Crime against Heritage (ARCH), English Heritage said,

"Cases of unlawful metal detecting have been prosecuted before, but this is the first time we have taken such a co-ordinated team approach, involving an expert lawyer, dedicated police investigators, finds experts and archaeologists."

"This is the first case to have been investigated in this way since the development of ARCH - the Alliance to Reduce Crime against Heritage."

"ARCH is supported by English Heritage, the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and a growing number of local authorities and community safety partnerships, and is designed to protect England's historic sites and buildings, for this and future generations"

"This case sets a valuable template for the investigation of future cases elsewhere in the country."

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Roman mosaic found during Toft Green sewer work


ENGINEERS repairing a York sewer found more than they bargained for when they uncovered a Roman mosaic floor.
A 120-metre section of damaged Victorian sewer in Toft Green was in the process of being replaced when workers spotted the mosaic tiles.
Work immediately stopped and a team of archaeologists stepped in to carry out a detailed study of the site, confirming that engineers had stumbled upon a Roman mosaic floor, dating back to the 3rd to 4th Centuries AD.
After two weeks of excavations the floor has been painstakingly removed.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Metal Detecting Dig 12th August 2012 Buntingford Area




We have been informed that

3 Counties MDC invite you to an open dig this Sunday 12th August 2012.

We have 300 acres of rape stubble on Buttermilk Hall Farm on the A507 between Baldock & Buntingford.
The majority of the stubble has been knocked back, giving us an ideal chance to get back on this productive site.

This dig is open to all, and the cost will be £10.00 per detectorist (£8.00 for members on production of your membership card)

The post code for the site is SG9 9RH.

If you are aproaching the site from Buntingford you will turn to the left, or from Baldock to the right. This is where you will pay your dig fees.

Once you have paid, you will be directed to the fields across the road to park up ready to detect.

The A507 is a busy road popular with motorcyclists, so please take extreme care when crossing and turning on and off the road.

Please treat our land with respect and fill in your holes.

We hope to see many of you there.

http://www.threecountiesmetaldetectingclub.co.uk/

Disclaimer ... This rally / dig is organised by a third party, www.treasurehunting.tv is in no way whatsoever involved with the organisation or running of this event therefore. We cannot therefore be held responsible for anything whatsoever that may occur at the above mentioned event and as such you should direct all enquiries / complaints to the event organiser.


Rare William I Penny found

A coin found by a Metal Detecting enthusiast on Monday 6th August, has been identified as a William I, Helmet Type Penny, of the Worcester Mint by a moneyer called Wicinc.

The coin itself has now been registered on the Early Medieval Coins datbase (E.M.C)  of the Fitzwilliam Museum.

Curator Dr Allen said 'this is a coin of the Worcester Moneyer Wicinc, who is known in the  reigns of Edward the Confessor and Harold II, and in William I types 1 and 2. Until this coin was found Wicinc was only recorded in type 2 from an unconfirmed source'.





This is just another example of how Metal Detectorists are adding so much to history and also bringing new types of coins and moneyers to light, which would have otherwise been unknown.

Rare silver ring unearthed near site of Hallaton hoard


A rare silver ring dedicated to the bloodthirsty Celtic god Totatis has been unearthed near the site of the Hallaton hoard of Roman and Iron Age coins.

It was discovered in a field in south Leicestershire by metal detectorist Bill Martin.

Full Story

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Reigate metal detector helps barman find lost family heirloom


A BARMAN and gardener at a Reigate pub was devastated after he lost a family heirloom while trimming hedges.

Will Gandey, 20, was clearing weeds and cutting back shrubs at the Skimmington Castle in Bonny's Road, Reigate Heath, when he realised the gold ring he was wearing had fallen off his finger in the grounds of the pub.

Full Story