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Dear Fellow Farmers and Landowners,


Hot isn’t it? Now concentrate, this matters…..


Detectorists say they’ve £10 million insurance cover via NCMD. Not if they’re non-UK residents they don’t! Nor if they are acting unlawfully (like taking stuff home without permission). So you’re at major financial risk. What to do? Hope they’ll pay for any damage themselves? (Good luck with that!) Or sign an agreement allowing them to take “some” items home? (Trouble is, if they take bits home that they shouldn’t they render their insurance invalid!)  So bizarrely, the safest thing is to tell them to take everything, then they can’t steal from you! (But even then, if they fail  to declare a Treasure find their insurance may be invalidated!)

If giving them all you own doesn’t appeal you could ask EH or the NUF for guidance. They urge us to sign a Finds Agreement so they’ll presumably know exactly how we can do it without putting ourselves at risk! While you’re at it, ask them to comment on this from the UK Metal Detecting Forum’s moderator: “Should there be unknown dangers on the land, such as concealed shafts, hazardous soil, badly driven tractors, savage dogs etc and you are unlucky to suffer injury, the contract can be a very useful document.” He seems to be saying “get a finds agreement lads so you can sue the pants off the landowner!” Don’t let them wriggle. Make them ask their legal departments if their advice to us to get a finds agreement could cost us dear in court, yes or no?

Your friend, (more so than the NUF),

Silas Brown


The Heritage Journal have sent me this Comment about my letter from a detectorist called Mark and have asked if I want to respond. It seems he just can’t get it through his head that they won’t publish comments from those who won’t support the legal regulation of metal detecting to ensure best practice and maximum public benefit. Quite right that they shouldn’t. I have to ask, friends, what sort of person wouldn’t support such a thing – and why? Would YOU want such a character on your fields? I wouldn’t!

Anyhow, what he said was:

Can you clarify how many fires have been started by metal detectorists? Or the reason you used the picture of a fire? And you go on about relevance…….. “

to which I’d respond: I don’t know how many crop fires have been started by detectorists discarding cigarettes but I resent the attempt to kid me it’s a small or non-existent risk. They are my crops not his yet he’s seeking to get me to take a risk with them. What a self-seeking clown.Colleagues, you might care to also ask EH and NUF if they think we should have the likes of him on our land as well as those who are willing to sue us.


17 August 2013: Oh, and I’ve just seen a detectorist claim about the upcoming Anton Rotary Club Rally scheduled for September 1st 2013: “Because it’s a Rotary club organised rally Insurance is not required as they’ve got their own public liability insurance which covers any Rotary Club Organised event.” Have they? They’ve got an insurance company that unlike the NCMD’s one will pay up for damage caused by a non-UK detectorist or a detectorist that’s acting unlawfully?!  That’s some insurance company! Rotary should check their policy wording.


[For more from Farmer Brown put Silas in the search box]


More Heritage Action views on metal detecting and artefact collecting



July 2013

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