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For 20 years we’ve called for legislative control of metal detecting on the grounds that freedom to report finds voluntarily has been widely taken as freedom to not report them. (“It’s legal, innit?“) In 2009 we opined that if ever laws were enacted to correct the situation they should reflect 3 simple truths:.

  1. Knowledge of  Society’s history belongs to Society
  2. Individuals should therefore not be free to claim, conceal or destroy it
  3. And the deliberate unearthing of buried archaeology should only be with Society’s agreement and in a way approved by Society.

Since those basic principles have long been widely accepted as common sense abroad it is to be hoped that any proposals here will fully reflect them – and that this time they won’t be watered down through fear of the exploitation lobby.

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[Note the Erosion Counter today: Since PAS started, 6,436,986 recordable items found (if each an inch wide they’d stretch 101 miles) mostly not reported.  Such is the true reality of laissez faire.]

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More Heritage Journal views on artefact collecting
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