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Dear Fellow Landowners,

Last week a chap asked if he and 500 chums could hold a detecting rally on my farm “for charity and Britain”. I support both so I said yes, if you’re insured. He laughed and said “Definitely. Through the National Council for Metal Detecting. For £10,000,000“. But last night, down at the Black Sheep and Wellies, my neighbour told me 3 things:

  1. he’d heard from a National Council for Metal Detecting official that the insurance cover is for each individual detectorist NOT the event, so if anything goes wrong and the organisers can’t identify the individual, they can’t claim.
  2. He’d also heard that cover usually doesn’t extend to non-UK residents
  3. Nor ever to detectorists who act unlawfully (which they might well if they cause you damage).

That worries me, especially as I know detectorists are fond of protection – for themselves: A forum moderator said they should all get a finds agreement because “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.”) So I think I need more clarification, maybe in the form of a Comment below from a rally organiser or The National Council or The Portable Antiquities Scheme, or all three, repeated in the farming press. It’s a bit important so you might feel the same dear friends.

Best wishes

Silas Brown,
Grunter’s Hollow,


More Heritage Journal views on artefact collecting


January 2019

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