Tag Archives: museum

Book on the Frome Hoard to be Released on October 11

The British Museum is releasing a book on the Frome Hoard!

Found in April 2010 by metal detectorist Dave Crisp, the Frome Hoard consisted of a very large roman pot filled to the brim with 52,503 Roman coins. The coins in the pot weighed around 160 kilograms (that’s 352.7lbs in old money), one of the largest coin hoards ever discovered! The coins are mostly third century radiates, some of them in a remarkable state of preservation. The book, titled simply ‘The Frome Hoard’, will be released on the 11th October 2010.

Denarius from the Frome HoardAbove: A Denarius of Carausius from the Frome Hoard. Photo courtesy of the Portable Antiquities Scheme’s Flickr photostream.

Another interesting point to note is that the British Museum still needs around £30,000 for conservation work on the coins, and 50p from every sale of the Frome Hoard book goes towards the cost of conserving the coins and the acquisition campaign apparently being run by Somerset County Heritage Service so that the hoard can stay in Somerset and be displayed in Taunton Museum.

I’ll provide some more information on the book and probably a review when I receive my copy.

The Frome Hoard by Sam Moorhead, Anna Booth and Roger Bland on Amazon.co.uk

Lecture on the Crosby Garrett Roman Helmet at Kendal Museum

The Westmorland Gazzette reports that there will be a lecture on the Crosby Garrett Roman Helmet held at Kendal Museum on October 1st at 19:30. To book a seat call the Kendal Museum on 01539 815597 or email info@kendal.ac.uk.

You can donate online to the Crosby Garrett Helmet Appeal here: http://www.justgiving.com/Tullie-House-Crosby-Garrett-Roman-Helmet-Appeal

The Westmorland Gazette Reports on Crosby Garrett Roman Helmet Appeal

The Westmorland Gazette has posted a story on the fundraising effort to keep the Crosby Garrett Roman Helmet in Cumbria. The Westmorland Gazette reports that, so far, the public have donated £25,000 towards the appeal fund and that staff at the Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery expect a large boost to the campaign fund “from high-profile arts and archaeology funds later this week.”

In the wake of the massive public interest in major metal detecting finds like the Staffordshire Hoard and the Frome Hoard, I had expected a greater level of interest in the Crosby Garrett Roman Helmet from the general public. The £25,000 raised so far was a big surprised to me, I had hoped for a whole lot more after all the publicity and news coverage the helmet received.

No doubt the massive cuts to public spending and the threat of mass job losses have had an impact on peoples willingness to donate to any cause, but even in the current financial climate, I had hoped we could do better.

So it seems, for now at least, that the fate of the Crosby Garrett Helmet lays with those “high-profile arts and archaeology funds”. I hope that those who decide how the money in those funds gets spent will support Tullie House and provide them with the money they need to acquire the Crosby Garrett Helmet, not just for the people of Cumbria, but for everyone in the whole of Britain.

The Crosby Garrett Helmet – Best Detecting Find Ever (Maybe)

Take a look at the latest Christie’s catalogue, the Roman Cavalryman’s helmet pictured on the cover was found by a metal detectorist in Crosby Garrett, Cumbria in May 2010 and was recorded by the Finds Liaison Officer at Tullie House Museum.

The helmet dates from the late first to second centuries AD, is made from tinned bronze and is 16 inches high. Christies have placed an estimate of £200,000-£300,000 on the helmet, which seems, to me at least, to be a very conservative estimate on such a large and significant piece of Roman military equipment. I would be very surprised if the auctioneer’s hammer came down at anything less than half a million pounds.

My major concern about this incredible metal detecting find is who will buy it? Does the Tullie House Museum have the cash to buy this incredible piece of Roman military history? Is the British Museum waiting in the wings for auction day to rush in and save it for the nation? After all of the post credit crunch cut backs, does the British Museum even have the money in reserve to buy it? The sale takes place on Thursday 7 October 2010, so time is short, if there isn’t a rescue plan in place is there time to organise one?

My biggest fear is that the Crosby Garrett Helmet is destined to leave our shores forever. Could the helmet go to the US, Japan or who knows where else? Surely any attempt to export the helmet would be blocked?

I would love to see the Crosby Garrett Helmet go to the Tullie House Museum, but if not to Tullie House, then the British Museum would be the next best thing. I just hope the helmet stays in this country and that the helmet ends up somewhere the general public can go and see it.

Is the Crosby Garrett Helmet the best metal detecting find ever? It may well be. I have certainly added stunning Roman Cavalryman’s helmet to my “must find” list!

There are more pictures and information about the helmet in the online edition of the Christies catalogue on pages 118-123 (pages 116-121 of the print version)