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by Nigel Swift

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Len hoard

There are a couple of deeply, deeply depressing things being said about the above, a FLO participating in a too-hurried (and therefore damaging) dig-out of the Lenborough Hoard and I don’t disagree with them.

1. Daniel Pett of PAS:
“There’s too much idealistic archaeological comment on this. PAS staff are at the sharp end.”
Fair enough Dan. No doubt the FLO wanted the digging to stop and no doubt there was a lot of ignorant pressure on her not to. Maybe she thought if she didn’t, they’d go ahead anyway, in an even more damaging fashion. Understandable. But why, why, why Dan has PAS spent 17 years outreaching yet there are still loads of uninformed selfish people out there constantly wrecking such contexts and you still haven’t told the Government something more than talking is needed?

2. Dr Gabe Moshenska ‏characterises critics thus:
“its basically “Your working class hobby is spoiling our middle class hobby!”
Yes, Gabe, we confess that is indeed our attitude!! Our middle class hobby (and I had only an outside loo up the garden all my childhood – did you?) is conserving knowledge and we’re against knowledge being needlessly destroyed for lack of best practice. How the blue blazes are we wrong? (We’re also against that working class hobby of wild bird egg collecting. What about you? Are you a bit middle class about that but a bit working class about metal detecting?)

So it’s very depressing. So long as Dan and Gabe keep talking like they do, those detectorists who don’t want to co-operate with Best Practice can rest very, very secure that they won’t have to. Tomorrow we’ll offer a simple measure that would end the worst abuses in a trice. Will Dan and Gabe pop over to say “Yay, we’ll support that proposal 100%!” We’ll see.

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More Heritage Journal views on artefact collecting

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