Thursday, 4 October 2018

Debating Metal Detecting in Europe

This page was set up following the lively discussion at a session during EAA 2015 in Glasgow, and aims to support and coordinate this emerging, as yet fragmented and intermittent debate. It is conceived as a community effort, hoping to provide resources and contacts by and for professional and amateur archaeologists, heritage managers, museum officials, policy makers and others. In addition, it may serve as a platform for further initiatives and projects that help to drive this debate forward. (Pieterjan Deckers, Andres Dobat, Michael Lewis, Portable Antiquities Scheme (site editor), Suzie Thomas (site editor)).
Five posts went up on 8th and 15th October 2015: Denmark, England and Wales, MEDEA, PAS, Reference bibliography. There were two more on 23rd Dec 2015: Call: Open Archaeology topical issue ‘Aspects of non-professional metal detecting in Europe’ as well as  Call: Roundtable session ‘Debating the value of archaeological material found by the public’, EAA Vilnius. Then in October 2016 there was a post: 'New publications: the Viking Great Army and the Battle of Lützen (1632)'. Since then, this great European debate seems to have stalled.


Skeggydetector said...

Hello Paul,

I am a WW2 Historian and metal detecting enthusiast and I would like to know about the regulations for metal detecting in Poland as we live half the year in Kedzierzyn-Kozle and I was looking at doing some detecting can you please advise me.

Many thanks

Ian Elliott

Paul Barford said...

Contact (of course) the Wojewódzki Urząd Ochrony Zabytków w Opolu (ul. Piastowska 14
45-082 Opole) and specifically Grzegorz Molenda (or Marta Kopec) for advice

Since here Polish 'poszukiwacze' researching WW2 sites tend to treat the research aspect far more seriously than mere artefact hunters in the UK intent on filling their pockets with curios and trophies, probably it would help to meet them and take along some copies of your previously published books and articles on WW2 history to show your qualifications and ability to document your discoveries and explain what you have in mind.

I personally would encourage you to leave the metal detector behind and research the history of the region through the copious documents and non-invasive survey. There is still a lot to do in those areas. Uncovering artefacts of that period is problematic in legal and curatorial terms. What could you do with them?

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