Tuesday, 21 May 2013

History Buffs Applaud Raid

On a metal detecting forum near you, the "responsible" tekkies ("passionately intersted in history") have reacted to yesterday's news of the seizure of 900 looted artefacts from a Norfolk home with joy. Bazza Thugwit, of Billericay for example writes (21 may 2013):
Well caught! People who handle dodgy artefacts should get what they deserve. Pity these guys got away with it for so long. 
Sam Scabmitts (21 may 2013) agrees:
Lock 'em up, that's what I say! 
The forum's moderator Ivor Eraysor adds:
the British Museum was right to shop these guys the moment they spotted them, apparently this was through one of the 'other' metal detecting forums, if these guys had been writing about what they were doing over here, they'd have been banned immediately and the police informed. We refuse to allow our forum to be used for discussions of anything of that nature. Be warned. 
 The reader need not try following the links, they do not work because there never were any such posts. The whole matter of one of their number in Northern Ireland going out there without a permit and thus metal detecting illegally has been skipped over on most detecting forums this morning. The whole issue of a metal detectorists's family home in Norfolk being raided and an entire collection of items seized is not mentioned. There has been no discussion of the fact that the Northern Irish guy ("only interested in the history?") was reportedly passing on masses of objects to the Norfolk guy. Why would he do that?  Why would the latter accumulate a whole load of stuff which he'd not found himself while "researching local history"? There are no anecdotes about how Thugwit "always suspected that **** was up to summat" and was a strange guy, and that he'd "never give his hand to him at a club dig". There are in fact a number of elements to this story which to my mind any normal group of enthusiasts (and especially self-proclaimed "responsible ones") would be interest themselves in and be discussing with alacrity. So why is there instead a conspiracy of silence about this notable and interesting case?
We know for a fact that metal detectors were used,” said Dr Ned Kelly, keeper of antiquities with the National Museum of Ireland, where the items will be displayed to the media tomorrow.

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