Friday, 3 August 2007

Treasure hunters – the new heroes of national heritage

Members of the public unearthed 57,566 ancient objects last year, according to the British Museum — an increase of 45 per cent on 2005. The items included a spectacular Viking hoard of 20 silver bracelets.

Two reports published yesterday show how finds by people walking, gardening, farming or actively searching for treasure provide a wealth of information about our past.

David Lammy, the Culture Minister, described metal detector users as “the unsung heroes of the UK’s heritage”.

The Treasure Act 1996 requires the reporting of all gold and silver objects more than 300 years old, and groups of coins that are more than 300 years old and found on the same site.

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