It’s a fact that the Portable Antiquities Scheme and the Treasure Registrar always publicise the times when detectorists indicate they don’t want a reward (almost invariably a footling amount so why even mention it?) whereas they don’t make it clear that the vast majority of detectorists grab the money however large or small (and even appeal in the hope of getting the “ransom” increased.)

The reason, presumably, is that they want to give people the idea that detectorists are fine fellows. Goodness knows why, when most finds aren’t reported and are lost to science, so they can’t be fine fellows they must be acquisitive and damaging. Or is logic not allowed when discussing the effect of the great majority of the 24,000 British artefact hunters? Now the Treasure Registrar’s mania for whitewashing (at taxpayers’ expense remember) has broken the bounds of factual accuracy (to put it gently). Look at this tweet:

‘Tis the season for giving: thank you to finder for waiving his right to a reward for this Roman silver ring, now in the collection of

The season for giving? What, the season to give Britain what Britain already owns? Waiving his right to a reward? Yet there is no right to a reward. It’s purely discretionary. Why go beyond praising some of Britain’s most acquisitive  people and give the public the impression they have a right to act like they do?