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Old 07-10-17, 14:23   #1
 
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Oh Crap! GOLD! Amateur Treasure Hunters Discover Britain’s Oldest Iron Age Bling

We Struck Gold! Two Amateur Treasure Hunter Friends Discover Britain’s 'Oldest' Iron Age Bling in a Cow Field in Staffordshire

Iron Age Gold Jewellery Found Buried in Field Likely to be `Worth a Bob or two´

  • Collection named the Leekfrith Iron Age Torcs and found in December 2016
  • Two treasure hunters found four torcs - three necklaces and one bracelet, one is estimated to be worth £220,000
  • They were made in the third or fourth century BC, making them 2,500 years old
  • They may have been buried for safekeeping or as an offering to the gods
  • Lifelong friends who made the find had given up hunting treasure 20 years ago..
  • An older Bronze Age torc, found in Northern Ireland, was valued at £150,000
  • 2009’s Anglo-Saxon Staffordshire Hoard find, was worth £3.285 million.

Daily Mail UK, 7 Oct 2017





Buried Iron Age gold jewellery thought to be the oldest ever found in Britain, has been formally declared treasure, with a coroner saying the haul was likely to be “worth a bob or two”.


Two amateur treasure hunters uncovered the four near-solid-gold, 18-carat torcs – three necklaces and a bracelet – in the middle of cow field on a hillside in Staffordshire last year.

At a formal treasure inquest on Tuesday, senior coroner Ian Smith said it would be “highly desirable” for the unique find to remain in the county.

A formal valuation will now take place but a fund-raising campaign is expected to be launched within weeks, aimed at securing the jewellery for permanent public display.

Life-long friends and metal detectorists Mark Hambleton and Joe Kania said they could not believe their eyes when they struck gold in December 2016.




Metal detectorists Joe Kania, right, and Mark Hambleton discovered the collection of gold torcs (Joe Giddens/PA)



After 60-year-old Mr Kania uncovered one of the bands, they then found three others concealed six inches below ground and a metre apart. The jewellery is thought to be up to 2,500 years old.


One of the torcs was broken, probably by ploughing, and its other half was only discovered when the pair returned to the spot of the first dig last Sunday.




The gold was found buried in a muddy field in Leekfrith in Staffordshire (Joe Giddens/PA)


Staffordshire is gaining a reputation as a hiding place for some of the country’s greatest historical treasures, with the latest discovery following 2009’s Anglo-Saxon Staffordshire Hoard find, worth £3.285 million.


This new find near Leek is about 45 miles north of Hammerwich, near Lichfield – the site of the vast 3,900-piece Saxon Hoard, which is perhaps the most famous discovery made by a metal detectorist.

The decoration on the sole bracelet has excited experts because it is thought to be some of the earliest Celtic British art.

Mr Hambleton had searched the same field once before, about 20 years ago, but without success.

After scouring the cold ground on the morning of December 11 last year, both men were ready to call it a day when suddenly Mr Kania got a signal.




A coroner says the haul is likely to be "worth a bob or two" (Joe Giddens/PA)


Pulling out the first torc on his hands and knees, Mr Kania said his initial thought was “bloody hell, I’ve seen this in a treasure-hunting magazine”.



Mr Hambleton, 59, said: “I’d had enough, I’d taken my detector off and packed up. He (Joe) shouted to me ‘I think I’ve found something quite significant’. He pulled this big torc out of his pocket, and dangled it in front of me.

“When I’d got some air back into my lungs, my head had cleared and my legs had stopped wobbling, I said ‘do you realise what you’ve found there?'”


After digging up the rest of the gold, Mr Hambleton admitted he had had a sleepless night with the haul next to his bed.

He handed the gold over to experts at Birmingham Museums the next day, with archaeologists from Staffordshire County Council and Stoke-on-Trent City Council brought in to investigate the finds site.

The men are now planning to split the find 50/50 with landowner Stuart Heath.

An inquest heard the torcs’ gold content was at least 80%, with each piece weighing between 230g (8oz) and 31g (1oz).

The pieces will be displayed at the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery in Stoke for the next three weeks.
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Old 09-10-17, 03:35   #2
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Default Re: GOLD! Amateur Treasure Hunters Discover Britain’s Oldest Iron Age Bling

Shucks,,, all I ever find is worn out pennies and bottle caps.
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