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By Nigel Swift

We have got somewhere. They have not. Bitter, twisted, and deluded.

Blimey! I was surprised by such an attack on those of us who are metal detecting sceptics by an archaeologist on Twitter this week. The claim “got somewhere” is hardly supported by the poor reporting rate to PAS or the fact tens of thousands of UK detecting finds get sold on eBay. Nor by the fact that in 2013 our accuser said he wanted detecting licensed yet 8 years on it still hasn’t been.

But there’s yet more proof that progress isn’t happening. All 27,000 detectorists avidly scan the ground surface while detecting, so they are also Field Walkers and could be expected, if anyone is getting somewhere, to adhere to the BAJR Guide to Field Walking. But here’s what that Guide specifies, followed by a tick or a cross to indicate if metal detectorists comply with them. Hoist. Petard.

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More Heritage Journal views on artefact collecting
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