Portable Antiquities and Metal Detecting in the News
This section represents a selection of articles about Portable Antiquities and Metal Detecting.
- Draft document Code of Ethics for Collectors of Ancient Artefacts by the Yahoo Ancient Artifacts Group.
- Treasure hunters boost gold finds. An increase in the popularity of metal detectors helped boost the number of treasure finds last year. A total of 749 objects were reported found in 2007, according to the Treasure Annual Report (BBC 19 November 2008).
- Archaeological find scheme starts. Oxfordshire and Berkshire residents are being encouraged to report any archaeological finds to museums (BBC, 23 October 2008).
- Portable Antiquities Scheme: too good to become history. Mike Heyworth, CBA Director, says it straight: the Scheme must go on (British Archaeology, No. 101, July/August 2008).
- Can International Support Save Antiquities Scheme? British Archaeology News (British Archaeology, No.99, Mar/Apr, 2008).
- Popular Scheme Threatened: Culture Change Needed. British Archaeology News (British Archaeology, No.98, Jan/Feb, 2008).
- Detecting the Past 1: The Landscape Rally or some archaeologists an army of 2,000 people with metal detectors sweeping down a hill must be the ultimate nightmare. But it happened, and as Paula Levick and Kate Sutton explain, the results seem to vindicate a new type of field research with unimagined possibilities (British Archaeology, No.98, Jan/Feb, 2008).
- Lost or Found? The Portable Antiquities Scheme gives us greater access to our heritage, but it has been put under threat by this year’s comprehensive spending review, comment by Lord Andrew Colin Renfrew (Guardian, Dec 17, 2007).
- Rare Find Highlights Antiquities Fears Rare Roman finds highlight the value of the Portable Antiquities Scheme, writes Maev Kennedy (Guardian, Dec 17, 2007).
- Metal Detectives are a National Treasure. An intricate figurine of a Roman horse and rider and an Iron Age comb are among an extraordinary 58,290 archaeological objects unearthed by members of the public in the past year, reports Dalya Alberge (Times, Nov 23, 2007).
- Scheme to Log Treasures Faces Cuts by Maev Kennedy (Guardian, Nov 22, 2007).
- Night Metal Detectors ‘Looting Britain’ by Jasper Copping (Sunday Telegraph, Jul 7, 2007).
- Beeping with the Enemy? Archaeology and metal detecting through the years, by Suzie Thomas. (CBA Newsletter, No.2, Apr 2007).
- Metal Gurus For Years, metal detector fans have been accused of pillaging Britain’s past. Now the culture minister says they are ‘unsung heroes’. But who’d want to spend all day in a muddy field with a machine that won’t stop beeping? Asks Patrick Barkham (The Times, Mar 24, 2007).
- ‘Unsung Heroes of Heritage’ Extolled for Unearthing Hoard of Treasure. Gold and silver jewellery among surge in finds by metal detector sleuths. Maev Kennedy. (Guardian, January 18, 2007) and Treasure Hunters – the New Heroes of National Heritage, by Dalya Alberge (The Times, Jan 18, 2007). See also the CBA’s response to David Lammy’s comments, in the CBA Newsletter (April 2007).
- Netted: Agreement to Control Sale of Antiquities on eBay by Maev Kennedy. (Guardian, Oct 3, 2006). See also,
- Illicit Artefacts Sold as eBay Turns Blind Eye by Dalya Alberge (The Times, Dec 18, 2006);
- Don’t Sell our Lost Treasure on eBay, Begs Museum by Dalya Alberge (The Times, Oct 27, 2004);
- What am I Bid for this Rare Antiquity? It’s Worth £400. I’ll Take £40 on EBay by Fiona Govan (Daily Telegraph, Sept 11, 2004); and
- Bronze-Age Axe Heads Sold on eBay Belong to Crown by Stewart Payne. (Daily Telegraph, Dec 23, 2005).
- Archaeologists and Amateurs Agree Pact by Maev Kennedy. (Guardian, May 2, 2006).
- Metal-Detectors’ Code Published (The Times, May 1, 2006).
- Treasure, But No Trove. Maev Kennedy on why Britain’s most valuable coin almost slipped through a hole in an obscure pocket of heritage law (Guardian, Feb 10, 2006).
- Counting the Treasure. Two annual artefact reports were published in November, by the Portable Antiquities Scheme (to March 2005) and the DCMS (to December 2003) (British Archaeology, No.86, Jan/Feb, 2006)
- Topsoil: Key Battlefield Layer. Tim Sutherland reports from the field of Marston Moor and encourages more co-operation between Archaeologists and Metal Detectorists in the study of battlefield Sites. (British Archaeology, No.79, Nov, 2004). However, see also:
- New Battle of Marston Moor by Maev Kennedy. (Guardian Sept 20, 2003); and
- The Fight to Save Battlegrounds from Invasion of Metal Detectors by David Keys (Independent, Sept 22, 2003).
- Fortunes Waiting to be Unearthed. Britain is littered with valuable artefacts, and if you find one, you are now entitled to its full value, says Jenny Knight. (Daily Telegraph, Apr 24, 2004), but see also:
- Beware: Finders Don’t Always End Up Keepers. If you find buried treasure on a beach or in the back garden, proceed carefully or you could end up in prison, warns Stephen Ellis. (Daily Telegraph, Feb 6, 2004).
- Opinion: Declaring War On Metal Detectorists . Sue Beasley finds that gold and silver are not the only way to engage with the past . (British Archaeology, No.75, Mar, 2004). See the response to this article in Letters in issue 76.
- Celebrating Treasure. The British Museum tackles an old archaeological debate head-on in its exhibition Treasure: Finding Our Past, which relies on objects unearthed by private collectors. Curator JD Hill explains why this is a good thing. (British Archaeology, No.74, Jan, 2004).
- See details of the Buried Treasure exhibition on the British Museum’s online tours.
- News: Hoards and Cemeteries. With its fifth annual report published the Portable Antiquities Scheme can be seen maturing into more than just an identification and recording service. (British Archaeology, No.74, Jan, 2004).
- Bill to Close Legal Loophole on Buried Treasures by Maev Kennedy. (Guardian, Dec 18, 2002).
- Thieves Pillage Iron Age Fort. Nighthawks have ransacked the slopes of one of Northumberland’s most important Iron Age hilltop forts, Yeavering Bell, writes Maev Kennedy. (Guardian, Oct 21, 2002).
- Treasure Trove Law puts Museums Under Pressure. The stunning success of the new treasure law, and the tenfold increase it has produced in the reporting of precious ancient finds, is emptying the acquisition funds of the British Museum, writes Maev Kennedy. (Guardian, Aug 15, 2002).
- Treasure Reporting Scheme at Risk. Future of voluntary archaeological programme hangs in the balance as organisers await news of lottery funding, writes Maev Kennedy. (Guardian, Apr 22, 2002). See also:
- the follow up article, Lottery Grant comes to Rescue of Archaeological Research by Maev Kennedy (Guardian, May 10, 2002).
- News: Detectorists Report Thousands of New Finds to Archaeologists. The third year of Government’s voluntary recording scheme brings to light numerous intriguing rarities. (British Archaeology, No.62, Dec, 2001). See also Dr Helen Geake’s comment on this article in Finds and Fields in the letters section of issue 64.
- Issues: From Treasure to Public Good. Our legal concept of ‘treasure’ works against the public interest, says George Lambrick. (British Archaeology, No.58, Nov, 2001).
- Metal Detectors Stir up Hostility as they Dig up the Past, writes Maev Kennedy. (Guardian, Mar, 2001).
- News: From a Stolen Seal to a Buried Brahma: members of the public reported 24,000 new discoveries last year. (British Archaeology, No.55, Nov, 2000).
- Proving their Mettle. Detector fans turn up trumps, writes Maev Kennedy. (Guardian, Mar 29, 2000).
- History from Fields and Back Gardens. Finds made by members of the public are now answering major historical questions, writes Simon Denison. (British Archaeology, No.46, Jul, 1999).
- Stemming the Flood of Looted Antiquities. The Government may soon agree to change British policy, writes Colin Renfrew. (British Archaeology, No.22, Mar 1997).
- As Looted Antiquities Keep Pouring in let us halt this dreadful trade, writes Peter Addyman. (British Archaeology, No.22, Mar 1997).
- Comment: Time Now for Reform of Treasure Trove. And this time let the Bill succeed, writes Richard Morris. (British Archaeology, No.11, Nov, 1996). See also:
- the response to this article by Dr Roger Bland in the Letters section of issue 12.
- Finds-Reporting Scheme is ‘an Advantage’. Government proposals for a code of practice on portable antiquities, aimed at encouraging finders to report their finds and findspots in England and Wales, have been welcomed by archaeologists as an important advance in tackling the problem of non-reporting. (British Archaeology, No.12, Mar 1996).
- Defeating the archaeological looters. Ireland now has the laws to protect its past, writes Eamonn Kelly (British Archaeology, No.4, May 1995).
- Help Us, and We’ll Help You. Mick Cuddeford offers a metal detectorist’s view of metal detecting and archaeology (British Archaeology, No.2, Mar 1995).
- Finders, Keeprs and Losers. Detectorists make a huge number of finds but report few of them, and illicit detecting is rife. But liaison will bring progress, writes Simon Denison (British Archaeology, No.1, Feb 1995). See also:
- the response to this article in Letters in issue 2.
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