Wednesday, 17 January 2018

NCMD Feet-draggers Left Behind by New Code

Heritage Action note: 'There’s a new Metal Detecting Code! First, the excellent news…', the good news is that in drawing up the Revised Code last year, 'only those who have the welfare of archaeology in mind have drafted it'. Although, as they point out - given the nature of the 'partnership' called 'responsible metal detecting' - this was a pretty obvious arrangement,
it’s not something that was recognised as sensible in Britain until now. So could this herald a fundamental change in stewardship of the buried archaeological resource? Might the next step be something that’s been equally overdue: a letter from archaeologists to farmers explaining the realities of [collection-driven exploitation of the archaeological record] without it being submitted for detectorists to edit, as previously demanded by their National Council? Could it be that the elephant has finally been thrown out of the room and off the backs of heritage professionals?
As the National Council of Metal Detectorists continues to drag its feet and take a back seat in the heritage debate, perhaps it is time for it to abandon its own 'close the gates' Code of Conduct for one which is far more in tune with the public interest. STOP taking our past. The past is not for pocketing.

Vignette: Stamping out best practice

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As you know Paul, the "just close the gates" code recommended by the NCMD is simply a way for detectorists to avoid offering a farmers the better code. It follows that successive "improvements" to the official one merely widen the gap in behaviour rather than improves behaviour.

So you may well have to wait till Hell freezes over before detectorists give up their defence against behaving better. If only, if only, archaeologists TOLD landowners the difference the defence would be rendered ineffectual.

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