Viewed edge-on a typical artefact such as an ancient coin is about a sixteenth of an inch wide. On that basis the Counter says if you lined up edgeways all the artefacts dug up and mostly not reported since 1975 they’d stretch 11.75 miles!



That’s “wrong” say all ten thousand artefact hunters and no archaeologists. But so far no-one has offered a reply to the fundamental question posed in the Papers of the Institute of Archaeology (Vol 20) by Prof David Gill:

How far out would this estimate [the Heritage Action Erosion Counter] need to be before it became a matter of marginal concern?

Opinions anyone? What if it was only ten miles? Would that be a concern to Britain? Or eight? Or six? Or four?


More Heritage Action views on metal detecting and artefact collecting