Archive 2010.

Solent Metal Detecting Club News. Archive of meetings and activities during 2010

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December Meeting.   The December meeting was held on the 8th of December. Our Finds Liaison Officer Robert Webley was present to record members finds. The raffle was held as usual, but with special Christmas prizes.
 November Meeting.  Fourteen members attended the November meeting. There was a discussion concerning amending the club rules. The new rules have yet to be ratified, but the main points of the new rules would be:- Membership must be taken out in January or February. The cost of membership will be £10.00 per year. To remain a member, it is mandatory that at least three of the monthly club meetings must be attended. The club membership limit would be increased to 50. There would be a 'probationary' period of 3 months for prospective members, which would not include access to club dig sites. For insurance reasons, no guests will be permitted on club digs. However, to allow children/grandchildren etc to be introduced to the hobby, there would, be a free Junior membership and provided the child was a FID member, they would be allowed on club digs if accompanied by an adult member. The complete list of new rules will be compiled by the committee and given to members before the AGM. If any member wishes to see an advanced copy of the new rules, they can obtain this by emailing the club.

  The raffle was held as usual. Members are reminded that the raffle is an important source of club funds. The price of tickets is to remain at £1.00.

   It is hoped that the club will be able to attend some fetes and fairs and other public events during 2011 and provide the public with an introduction to metal detecting and give demonstrations as well as letting members of the public try it for themselves. More volunteers are required for this important aspect of the hobby. Please get in touch if you are able to help.

          Those members who do not attend a meeting are reminded that the list of club site digs for the month can be found at the bottom of the Notice Board page of this web site. 

        The next monthly meeting will be held on Wednesday the 18th of December at 8.00pm. Our Finds Liaison Officer will be at this meeting, so bring along your finds for identification and recording.

   Members are reminded that the Rosemary Foundation Christmas Market will take place at the Warnford village hall on Saturday the 20th November from 11.00 am to 2.00 pm. Please support this charity by coming along to this event.


October meeting.   The October club meeting took place on Wednesday the 13th of October. There were 18 members and one guest present. Our Finds Liaison Officer Robert Webley was present to record members finds. Also at the meeting was Katherine Robbins, from Southampton University. Katherine reminded us of her PhD project on the distribution of finds based on the PAS database, and requested members to fill in her on line questionnaire. ( A link to this can be found on the Notice Board page of this site ). A paper copy will be available at the next club meeting for those members who do not have access to the Internet.

  The Christmas meal was discussed and the Coach and Horses, Hilsea decided upon as the venue. This will take place in early December. For details, email this site, or come along to the next meeting and reserve you place at this Christmas activity.

The club raffle was held as usual. Members were requested to support this raffle as the proceeds were an important contribution to the club funds.

The treasurer reported that club funds were sufficient for all planned future club activities and that the Charity Account was building up now that we were entering the new detecting season.

Please support your club by coming along to the next meeting !  ( To be held on 10th November 8.00pm, usual venue )


September meeting.  We held our September monthly meeting on the 8th. There were 15 members and one visitor present. The treasurer gave his report and the raffle was held as usual. There was a discussion about this year's Christmas meal. A Carvery seems to be the popular choice, but suggestions from members would be welcome. It was noted that many of the farm fields were available and could be detected until seeded. Once again, many members had finds to show and discuss.


August meeting.   The August meeting was held on the 11th August.  Sixteen members attended this meeting. Rob Webley our FLO and Katie Robbins also attended and were able to help members with information and identification of their finds. The raffle took place as normal to provide funds for the running of the club. There were the usual discussions about finds and metal detecting in general.     


July meeting.   The meeting for this month was held on Wednesday the 14th. The meeting was attended by 17 members and one guest.  The raffle was held as usual. If anyone has any suitable items to donate as prizes for the raffle, please bring them along to the next meeting. All those detecting magazines that you have finished with would make useful raffle prizes. Members discussed finds that had been made since the last meeting. The chairman was hopeful that, as the farm year progresses, there would soon be more than just the pasture land to detect on. A donation of £50 was made to the Royal Naval Association Club.  Please note that the Finds Liaison Officer, Rob Webley,  will be in attendance at the August  meeting ( Wednesday August 11th ), so bring along your recent finds for recording on the Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS) database.


June meeting.  The June club meeting was held on Wednesday the 9th of June. The meeting was attended by 17 members. Rob Webley, the Hampshire Finds Liaison Officer was there to record members' finds on the Finds Data Base. He reported that the web site ( see the External Links page )  had been greatly improved. One change that had been made is that members could now register with the site and log on using their username and password. They would then have direct access to the records of their own finds. The raffle was held as usual. The Chairman/Secretary (TW)  sent apologies for not being able to attend the meeting. Rob hopes to be in attendance again  at the August meeting to record finds. The treasurer gave a brief report mentioning the successes and failures of the 'searching for lost items' activities by club members since the last meeting. The financial position of the club was satisfactory, but the charity fund was low due to a large cheque having been recently given the the Rosemary Foundation. While the number of members detecting on farms at this time of the year is low due to being limited to pasture while crops are growing, members were reminded that the income from farm searches is our main source of funds for charity donations and should be paid on the day, or at the next club meeting.


Club assistance at Holy Cross Church, Durley.  On the 13th of May 2010, the club received a request for help at Holy Cross Church at Dursley. They had a badly leaking tap and needed urgently to repair it.  The email received explains the situation :-

To Solent Metal Detecting Club.:-

Hi,  I am emailing you on behalf of Holy Cross Church, Durley. We need to find the external stopcock for our water supply. I am assuming it should have a metal top to the chamber. I have tried already with a toy metal detector, with no success. Neither the plumber who most recently did work on the church nor the water board seem to know where it is. Is there anyone in your club who lives near Durley and might be willing to donate a little time to try to find it?

             This request for assistance was posted on this web site, as a result of which a member of the club very kindly offered to help and immediately went to the Church.  He found one stopcock, which appeared to belong to a neighbouring property, but was able to give much more direct help by fitting a new tap without turning off the water!  This sort of response helps to improve the image of metal detectorists with the public. Our thanks to the member who gave up his time to provide help in this way.


May meeting.   The May meeting was attended by 17 club members and another new member was welcomed into the club. This now brings our membership to the maximum allowable and further applicants for membership will be put on a waiting list.  It was announced that the club now has a new treasurer. The members were informed that there had been two successful searches for lost rings since the last meeting  -( See details below ). As a result of one of these ring recoveries a contact with a land owner had been made giving rise to the  possibility of the club obtaining new land to search. There was the usual raffle and, of course,  members fortunate enough to have made good finds during the past month showed them and discussed them with other members. Please note:- the next club meeting will be on the 9th of June 2010.


Another successful lost ring recovery.  On the 10th of May the club received an email from a couple in Waterlooville who explained that both a wedding ring and an engagement ring had been lost in their garden. The following day a club member went to the address and, after about an hour or more of searching, found both rings. As a result of this the lady who had lost the rings very kindly sent a donation to the Rosemary Foundation charity.


Successful recovery of a gold ring.  On the 18th of April the club received an email from a gentleman in Bishops Waltham saying that he had lost  his gold wedding ring in his garden,  - and could we possibly help him to find it. So, on the following Wednesday three members of the club went to Bishops Waltham armed with metal detectors. The ring was found within a few minutes of commencing the search. Mike Schofield, the gentleman who had lost the ring was, of course, delighted and has sent the following email:-   
Terrific Trio ! !

My heartfelt thanks to Solent MDC members (TS, AS and TW ) who found my wedding ring after I lost it in our garden.
It's wasn't the value of the ring that mattered so much - it was the loss, after 42 years of marriage, and the upset it caused my wife and me.
My wife and I had spent a week searching; raking, and scrabbling around without finding it, and had considered buying a replacement, but agreed that, apart from the cost, a new ring just wouldn't be the same.
So, before giving up the search entirely, I thought about renting a metal detector and, while hunting around on the web for suitable equipment, I found the Solent MDC site, and the page about the help they offer to find lost items. I contacted the club by email and asked if any of the club members would be willing to help. The answer came back - "Yes" - and a couple of days later [ three club members ] came along with all their gear. And - wonderful news - [TW] found the ring within five minutes of the search starting. Never before have I ever hugged a woman I met only 15 minutes earlier! And - try as I might, over a celebratory cuppa - these nice, friendly people would not let me give them even a penny - or even allow me to cover the cost of their petrol to come over to Bishop's Waltham from Waterlooville. Instead they asked that I make a donation to any charity of my choosing. My cheque - along with a copy of this - has gone to Solent MDC's chosen charity - The Rosemary Foundation in Petersfield.

Solent MDC - Wonderful people and a great service.

Mike Schofield
Bishop's Waltham
April 2010


Our thanks to Mike for his generous donation to the Rosemary Foundation.  When the club manages to find a lost item there is never any expectation of any payment of any kind for this service, but Mike has shown his gratitude by giving a donation to a charity the club supports. Many thanks Mike.


April meeting.     The April meeting was well attended, with one new member being welcomed to the club. Our local Finds Liaison Officer, Rob Webley* was at the meeting and available to record members' finds. The main interest of the meeting was a talk, - illustrated by numerous slides of distribution maps and example coins - , given by Sam Moorhead on the subject of  'Iron age and Roman coins recorded with the Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS)'. Emphasis was given to Hampshire and comparisons made with neighbouring counties and the Isle of Wight. Sam started by giving a brief outline of the old 'Treasure Trove Act' and the current 'Treasure Act 1996'. The 21 periods of Roman coinage were covered in the presentation. Numerous examples of the distribution of coins found were given, comparing the distribution before the inclusion of the PAS data and after. In some cases the inclusion of the data provided by the PAS resulted in a clearer and more accurate view of the history of the period. The general conclusion was that the PAS data has been a significant contribution to historical knowledge of the period. Detectorists have filled in many of the gaps in the distribution of coins and artefacts. Much of the work of Richard Reece was quoted along with the data on which he based his findings. It was then shown how, in many cases, when the data from the PAS was added, a different picture and different conclusions emerged. ( For Richard Reece's view, - see 'The Coinage of Roman Britain' by Richard Reece, Tempus Publishing - currently available from for about £10 ) In addition to emphasizing the benefits of the metal detectorists' input to PAS it was pointed out that archaeologists would like to see all coins recorded, including those 'grots' that appear, to the detectorist, to have no value and are often confined to the junk box or even discarded. 'Grots' are important and should be reported to the PAS.
The talk was informative and appreciated by the club members. One conclusion to come from the presentation, one that was implied during the talk and expressed by club members afterwards, was that, rather than discouraging landowners from allowing detectorists on their land, archaeologists would benefit from having as much land as possible covered by detectorists so that blank areas of the map can be filled in.

Next meeting will be on Wednesday the 12th of May.

*  Robert Webley
Role: Finds Liaison Officer
Database records prefix: HAMP

Address: Winchester City Council, City Offices
Colebrook Street Winchester Hampshire SO23 9LJ

Rob comes to the role of Hampshire Finds Liaison Officer from Northamptonshire where he was a Finds Assistant during 2005. He has a Masterís degree in Archaeological Heritage Management from York University; his first degree was in History with French (Durham). Rob has had a lifelong passion for coins, and a particular interest in the later medieval and Tudor periods.


March meeting. The March club meeting was held on the 14th of March. The were 15 members present. Members were reminded of the talk on Roman Coins to be given by Sam Moorhead at the April meeting and of the Rosemary Foundation Easter Bazaar at East Meon village hall on the 20th March where the club will be presenting a cheque to the charity. It is hoped that as many members as possible will be able to attend these events. Next meeting:-  Wednesday 14th April 2010.

    Note: Sam Moorhead is the National Finds Adviser for Iron Age and Roman Coins, Department of Antiquities and Treasure, British Museum. If you read the magazine 'Treasure Hunting' you will be aware of his current series of articles on the History of Roman Coins being published in this magazine.


February meeting.   The February club meeting was held on the 10th of February 2010. The Finds Liaison Officer attended and was able to examine some of the members recent finds. Our Find of the Month competition has be resumed and a certificate was presented to the winner. The FLO stated that he had arranged for Sam Moorhead to give us a talk on Roman Coinage. Sam is the National Finds Advisor for Iron Age and Roman Coins, Department of Portable Antiquities and Treasure for the British Museum. This will take place at our April meeting.


                              Club members, and others interested in metal detecting, might be interested to know of  radio programme broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on Sunday the 7th of February at 1.30pm entitled 'In Pursuit of Treasure' which deals with the subject of 'nighthawkers'.    If it is repeated I will let you know on this NEWS page.


Club AGM

January meeting.   The club's Annual General Meeting was held on Wednesday the 13th of January. The meeting was attended by 15 members. The recent heavy snow has meant that many members were unable to attend. Because of this it was decided to defer some decisions and postpone the election of the committee members until the February meeting, which is due to take place on Wednesday the 10th of February at the usual venue.

     The treasurer reported that the club's finances were in good order and that we were due to present a cheque to the Rosemary Foundation in the near future.

     Note that it is time for all memberships to be renewed and the fee for this is £5.00. Any member who could not attend the January meeting will be able to renew membership at the February one.

     Due to a recent incident, it was necessary to point out to members that farms may only be detected on the dates shown in the list provided to members and that membership cards must be carried at all times and shown on request.