Hampshire Museums Service

Archaeology

Chance finds and metal detecting

Metal detecting is an extremely popular hobby... there is the thrill of finding something that has lain forgotten for hundreds of years.

Essential do's and dont's

You must get the permission of the landowner, as well as informing them of any finds. In some areas you may be breaking the law by searching. If you find something, decide whether it can safely be moved. Ensure that associated evidence is preserved and the object is not damaged in the process. If you are unsure, cover it and mark the place, then contact your local Finds Liaison Officer. Never clean a find without taking expert advice. You will need safe storage, recording, labelling and transport of anything you find.

You should also familiarise yourself with the Treasure Act. If you are metal detecting, please detect responsibly and in line with the metal detector's code of practice. The Finds Liaison Officer would be very keen to record any of your finds over 300 years old. Please get in touch if you have any material of interest or any mystery finds.

Remember that a find may be deemed as treasure and required by law to be reported to the coroner.

 
Metal detectorist at work

Hampshire Finds Liaison Officer

Katie Hinds
Museums and Heritage
Tel 01962 848558
Fax 01962 848299

Portable Antiquities Scheme.