Metal Detecting couple Brian and Val Read are to have their Metal Detecting finds displayed at Salisbury museum. The couple have found the items over a 20 year period in the Deverill Valley near Warminster, and the finds include a Roman Bust, a medieval tag and a gilded medieval brooch.
A spokesman for the Salisbury Museum said “Mr and Mrs Read have been working closely with the Portable Antiquities Scheme for the past 11 years, and have contributed greatly”.
The director of the museum Adrian Green expressed ” I’m delighted to have the opportunity to show just how important the work of some talented local metal detectorist’s have become.
Since Brian and Val began, their salisbury metal detecting finds and work have been invaluable to the understanding of the history of Wessex.
Unfortunately the exhibition is temporary and if you would like to view it then it will only be displayed in the museum’s new Wessex Gallery of Archaeology until the end of February 2015.
The Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum is a a charitable, non-profit organisation and relies solely on entry fees, grants and donations to support the members to continue the vital work. You can now make a small donation online to
A selection of objects found by a husband and wife metal detecting team over a 20-year period have gone on display at Salisbury Museum.
Objects found by Brian and Val Rees in the Deverill valley near Warminster, include a Roman bust, a medieval tag and gilded medieval brooch.
Other items found locally by members of the public are also on show, including a medieval seal and a Bronze Age sword.
A fragment of a Bronze Age spear and a Roman bowl are also on display.
A museum spokesman said Mr and Mrs Rees had been working closely with the Portable Antiquities Scheme for the past 11 years.
The scheme was set up in 1997 to encourage the voluntary recording of archaeological objects found by members of the public.
Museum director Adrian Green said: “I’m delighted to have the opportunity to show just how important the work of some talented local detectorists has become.
“Since they’ve been co-operating with the scheme, their work has contributed enormously to our understanding of the history of Wessex.”
The temporary exhibition will be on show in the museum’s new Wessex Gallery of Archaeology until the end of February.
One of the largest discoveries of Roman Coins in Britain was made by a metal detector enthusiast in Devon. A campaign by the local museum was quickly launched to purchase the incredible coins for the nation.
The British Museum announced the find on Friday the 26th of September 2014 and is calling it the Seaton Down Hoard. The hoard of coins was made up of approximately 22,000 coins of which dated back over 1700 years, and is officially the fifth largest discovery in Britain.
The detectorist’s name was Laurence Egerton who is 51 years old and a semi retired builder who resides in East Devon. He first discovered 2 two tiny ancient coins, about the size of a thumbnail near the surface of a field last year in November.
After he continued to dig deeper, his shovel returned FULL of the copper coins he quoted “They just spilled out all over the field it was an exciting moment. I had found a few Roman coins before but never so many together”
Laurence called in experts and watched in amazement as archaeologists unearthed thousands more, which were buried about a foot deep. Laurence Egerton was that concerned about his discovery and where it was found that he protected the site by sleeping in his care for three nights until the dig was over.
He told sources “It’s by far the biggest find I’ve ever had. It does not get any better. It is very important to record finds like these properly because it is so easy to lose important insights into our history” He found the coins near the Honeyditches site where a Roman villa had already been previously excavated.
The local county archaeologist Bill Horner, at the County Council of Devon said “We realized the significance and got a team together as quick as we could.” He also said “The coins were in fantastic condition, coming out of the ground you could see the portraits on the coins, a family tree of House Constantine.”
The coins have been lightly cleaned over the previous ten months, cataloged, researched and identified at the museum, there is still lots more work to do. The coins vary in age from 260 AD to around 350 AD. The coins feature a range of portraits, and described it as a “family tree of the House of Constantine”.
The Museum described the size of the find as “remarkable”, and continued to state that it was “one of the largest hoards eve found within the whole Roman Empire”. It is officially the fifth largest find in Britain, the Cunetio Hoard being the largest consisting of 55,000 coins. The Cunetio hoard was unearthed near Mildenhall, Wiltshire in 1978.
It has been said that the coins that have been found in the Seaton Down hoard would not have been very valuable at the time, the experts also estimated that they would have equaled four gold coins, which is equivalent to a workers average pay for two years of work.
The Royal Albert Art Gallery, and Memorial Museum located in Exeter are hoping to raise the money to purchase the collection and have made an appeal to the public for donations.
The hoard discovery has yet to be valued, but sources say that the Seaton Down Hoard would be valued at less than £100,000. This will be split between Laurence Egerton and Clinton Devon Estates, the landowners.
One of the coins is said to be particularly special, as it marks the millionth find of the PAS (Portable Antiquities Scheme, which was set up in 1997 to provide records of discoveries made by the general public.
The PAS is managed by the British Museum and is funded by the Department for Media, Culture and Sport’s grant-in-aid to the institution.
They had been sat waiting for the millionth find to come along and Neil MacGregor said “then 22,000 come all at once”
The millionth find coin called a nummus, was struck by Constantine the Great and celebrated the inauguration of the new city of Constantinople, now known as Istanbul.
Since 1997 a total of 500 Roman coin hoards have been discovered in Britain, and the scheme has been set up to keep record of all the finds made by metal detectors and enthusiasts. It provides a resource for scholars to study.
The British Museum said “recording the finds has revolutionized the knowledge of battlefields, including Naseby in 1645 and the Battle of Bosworth in 1485 where King Richard the III was to meet his death. They discovered the silver-gilt boar badge which in turn helped pinpoint this site as the place he died.
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