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Terminological vaseline” Paul Barford calls it, but he’s always been far too polite about what’s going on. It’s actually a series of bloody lies intended to convince taxpayers, stakeholders, landowners and legislators that metal detectorists (and ergo the official organs that accept wages for dealing with them) comprise fine, beneficial  fellows, on balance.

Take this official mantra: “the vast majority of people are keen that their hobby has a positive impact.” That’s a bloody lie (even though it is “quote of the week” in the Antiques Trade Gazette). The vast majority don’t report most of what they find so the real truth is that  “the vast majority of people are keen that their hobby IS SEEN TO HAVE a positive impact”. If they actually gave a damn they would report all their finds, yes?

See also this tweet from PAS on Thursday…. “For the first time in #Ashes17 @ECB_cricket have scored more runs over @CricketAus than finds recorded on @findsorguk in a day!” Light hearted and amusing, eh? England scored 305 runs, which is more than the number of finds PAS has ever recorded in a day. But what they don’t tell you is that metal detectorists fail to tell them about nearly 2,000 recordable finds every single day for 20 years.

See if you can get your head round that scale of needless cultural loss. And then consider whether the endless official praise for their “hobby” is deserved or a national disgrace.

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It’s Hilary McGrady ….

She doesn’t look like a dinosaur so there’s hope that the influences which have brought the Trust’s reputation so low may soon be a thing of the past. Her very first words suggest that could happen: “This is a charity I love because it looks after the things that matter to me personally, the outdoors, the arts, heritage, nature and beauty…… these are things that I believe matter to the nation…..”

Perhaps then she will be receptive to two requests.

On the subject of heritage, will she consider ditching the irrational stance which has done so much to damage the Trust’s reputation: its support for a short tunnel at Stonehenge in defiance of UNESCO, ?

… And on the subject of nature, will she consider banishing trail hunting and its potential for “accidental” cruelty from all National Trust land? Or, if that is too difficult initially (given the fact the Trust has been massively infiltrated by Countryside Alliance supporters), could she at least issue a ruling that any foxhounds on Trust land must be muzzled? We suspect all the hunts will resist, strongly, which should tell her all she needs to know.

 

Update:

Let’s hope Ms McGrady will also reflect on the fact she is heading an organisation that is tolerant of the fact cruel “mistakes” happen on its land at the same time as the Government is introducing a bill increasing the maximum prison sentence for animal abuse from six months to five years! Public attitudes are changing and the real world is impacting upon the fossilised attitudes of the National Trust as never before. Something must surely give? We hope she won’t stand by the fossils!

by Alan S.

For our second video tour of some of the sites of West Cornwall we revisit the Boscawen Un stone circle, near St Buryan.

If there’s a specific site you’d like to see covered in this series, please leave a comment and I’ll see what I can do.

Last week we pointed out how the Treasure Registrar was whitewashing detectorists. In the 7 days since then (to correspond with the Treasure report perchance?), they (and a FLO) have laid it on even thicker….. 

  1. “Thanks to finder Paul Williams for generously waiving his reward”
  2. “Thank you to the publicly spirited finder for waiving his reward”
  3. Well-done to the finders…. who’ve waived their entitlement to a reward”
  4. “Thank you to those publicly-minded individuals!”
  5. very kindly donated….”
  6. “the finders donated this, too
  7. “”the finders donated to the British Museum – thank you ever so much!!!
  8. “have graciously waived their reward”

Obsequious or what! “Public spirited”, “kind”, “generous”, “gracious” – for not taking money from the public for handing over the public’s property as required by law! There’s nothing public spirited or gracious about that. Plus, there’s never a word about the fact the great majority of detectorists don’t waive their reward and often appeal to get more.

If anyone can show how this isn’t clear evidence of the Establishment spreading fake news and misleading the taxpaying public about the true nature of metal detecting in Britain ….  we’ll publish it!

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Banbury-based environmental sculptor David Gosling and his son Adam have just completed a new temporary sculpture at the Rollright Stones of Three Fairies Dancing, reflecting one of the many folklore legends associated with the Stones. The sculpture is inspired by William Blake’s painting Oberon, Titania and Puck with Fairies Dancing from A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Shakespeare may well have known the Stones as they are close to the old road from Stratford to London. Some of the numerous folklore legends date back to his day or earlier. It is said that the Fairies come out to dance round the Stones at night. They would emerge from a hole in the rock at the bottom of a former quarry by the King Stone.

(A few years ago witches were also spotted there)

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YOU decide. Throwing Bears Ears open for commercial exploitation and lobbying for a massive new road across the Stonehenge landscape are both deliberate shrinking of the extent of the protected areas. But it’s not hard to see which is worse:

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Dear Fellow Landowners,

What would YOU call these well known detectorists on a public forum:

Allectus: “Has the farmer got a machine with a ditching bucket (they usually have) he/you can use? …..If he has, that’s the way to go mate.”

“Cheers A, I’m meeting the farmer on a Saturday, he says he might put the plough through it next week for me. Didn’t think about asking him to given a deeper dig, I’ll see what he says.”

“Allectus is right mate, as a first port of call try and get the farmer to scrape 6″ off at a time, depends how interested he is if he will do it or not, and how much you can tell him it might be worth his while”.

Nectardetector: “Well found mate it’s sum buzz isn’t it ingnore all the bad comments you did it pal and nobody can take that away congrats”.

bleepybloopy (British by Birth – English by the Grace Of God)
Not to labour the point here, but nobody here is advocating any deeper digging with without the presence /advice/agreement of the FLO are they? ”

“Yep, I am!”.

OK, these are greedy selfish ignorami who are never going to be educated about not vandalising archaeological layers. But why on earth has PAS not educated every farmer?

Regards,

Silas Brown,
Grunters Hollow,
Worfield,
Salop

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The European Council for Metal Detecting (a British inspired organisation formed to persuade Europe to adopt Britain’s metaldetecting regime) has just taken on a new member, ”Pro Detectie” from Romania. It’s bizarre, to say the least, given that Romania’s law says:

> All finds older than 100 years are to be surrendered to the relevant authorities within 72 hours.
> Selling a find is a crime and it is punished by prison time.

We can very safely assume that no British detectorists would countenance the adoption of such a responsible, heritage friendly policy.

So the question arises, how will the European Council for Metal Detecting integrate their new Romanian members? Will it lobby for Romania to abandon its protection regime (which will be impossible) or for Britain to adopt the Romanian system (which will also be impossible)?

The suspicion must arise that the European Council for Metal Detecting is a blowhard organisation that can’t achieve it’s aims.

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Also, please support Rescue’s plea regarding post Brexit archaeology  which relates to another part of the same British tragedy.

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