Friday, 14 March 2014

Artefact Hunting, the Spelthorne Deal

Chris Caulfield ('Metal detecting treasure hunters destroying ancient moorland' Get Surrey 23 Jan 2014) reports that Spelthorne Borough Council are fighting to keep metal detectorists from artefact hunting on a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) at Staines Moor but as he reports:
It is not all doom and gloom for would-be treasure hunters, though, as the council plans to organise metal detection parties. The idea is to have experts from Spelthorne Museum on hand to help identify, and tell the story behind, any of the finds. Mr Hicks explained: “As a council, we want to provide for everyone and are hopeful we can get something up and running – if we can, it will be very good. “There are a lot of historic finds – old coins, belt buckles, things dating back to Roman times when the town was first settled. “It’s about making sure we do it in a controlled manner so we don’t expose holes and don’t do it on SSSI land. 
So they are going to trash one part of the local archaeological record to preserve another? What kind of conservation is that? Surely both historical and natural environment should be being preserved, not one sacrificed for the sake of the other. 

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