Roman coins found in Hampshire field declared 'treasure'

Started by gash, March 11, 2019, 12:03:39 am

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TWO Roman coins found in a Hampshire field have been declared as treasure by a coroner.

The gold coins, dating from the mid-fourth century, were discovered near Meonstoke in the Meon Valley by John Whittaker and Mike Gaines on separate occasions in October and November 2017, an inquest heard.

Dr Nick Stoodley, of the Meon Valley Archaeology and Heritage Group, in a statement to the hearing in Winchester, said the find satisfied the criteria to be classed as treasure: it was over 300 years old, made of precious metal and of two or more in number.

The exact location of the find is undisclosed to reduce the risk of 'nighthawks, illegal detectorists who trespass on land, usually at night, to seek historic finds.

Most detectorists now hunt for hidden items with the permission of the landowner. The vast majority of historic finds are now being declared to the authorities, enabling them to keep on top of most discoveries.

The nighthawks' finds make their way on to the black market, bypassing the official channels.

Samantha Marsh, assistant central Hampshire coroner, made the ruling at the hearing in Winchester.

The coins date from towards the end of the Roman occupation of Britain in 410AD.

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