Iron Age / Roman Strap Fitting
I am a member of Ambers Digs, a group of detectorists that venture out most Sundays in the North East of England. Recently the group had its annual rally which consisted of a weekend camp on farm land with a large area of arable land on which to detect. Unfortunately due to work commitments I was unable to attend the rally for the full weekend but managed to make it for the final day.
I turned up at the camp field to be told of some fantastic finds that had been unearthed the previous two days and was quite worried that there would be nothing left for me to discover. After around four hours my fears seemed quite well founded as all I had found was a Jeton which was in poor condition and a medieval pot leg. However I persevered but without much success. It was now getting quite late in the day and the majority of the group had packed up and gone home leaving just myself and three other members still detecting. We decided to concentrate on a fairly small field and began turning up a few small artefacts.[split]
I found an 1818 George III silver sixpence which was pretty well worn but I was happy to have found a coin. This was quickly followed by a nicely decorated conical silver button. The sun was beginning to set so we all decided to call it a day and walked back to our cars detecting all the way but with nothing else of interest coming up. I switched off my detector whilst the others were packing away their camping gear and chatted for a while. Then I decided to have one last try and switched my Safari back on and began heading towards my car. There was a portable toilet between me and my car so I changed direction to go around it. I was about 10 yards away from the toilet and get a decent signal. I dug down only about two inches and I find what is believed to be a Copper alloy strap fitting of the late iron age to early Roman period and as such is more than 1500 years old. Apart from a bit of corrosion mostly on the back of the artefact the condition is very good with traces of coloured enamel is still visible in the recesses that radiate out from the off centre circles.
This is by far the oldest artefact found with my Safari and to have found it with the very last signal of a very long day and indeed the very last signal of the rally taught me a valuable lesson on perseverance. You just never know when that signal in your headphones is going to be the possibly the find of your life.