One might expect the decision to go ahead with the Stonehenge short tunnel would prompt quite a reaction among Britain’s 27,000 metal detectorists – who are, PAS tells us, mainly in it because of their interest in history. But no. So far as we can see there’s not a word about it on metal detecting forums, blogs, and Facebook pages. Except on one blog:

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“This happy news is not only an Agincourt Salute to that employment bureau for ex-commies, UNESCO, but arguably best of all, humiliates the smug, preserve-the-countryside-in-aspic, Heritage Journal… a gormless, vacuous, fringe archaeology outfit. There’ll be a wailing and a gnashing of teeth in Mercia tonight. Guffaw, guffaw, guffaw! Trebles all round.”


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The swipes at the Journal don’t matter, they’re our punishment for wanting metal detecting to be less destructive. But UNESCO as an employment bureau for ex-commies? And the destruction of part of the Stonehenge World Heritage landscape is an occasion for “trebles all round”?

Neither that nor the silence about the issue from most detectorists suggest PAS’s term “citizen archaeologists” and its claim that most detectorists are in it purely for a love of history are valid, Indeed, we’d suggest most metal detectorists do as much for history as trophy hunters do for zoology and the main difference between the two is that in Britain the former are praised and paid!

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A Productive site mate! And if we show the bodies to the Portable Animal Site they’ll praise us. We might even get a massive reward from the British Government. So stuff UNESCO and their conservation claptrap!

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More Heritage Journal views on artefact collecting
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