8:10am Thursday 15th March 2012
COINS, a bullet and a silver bracelet were just some of the treasures that got metal detectors beeping.
More than 300 metal detectorists scoured a farm near Lydiard Park in a charity event at the weekend, which was organised by the Rotary Club of Royal Wootton Bassett and District with special permission from the farmer.
A possible Saxon coin, Roman coins and an Elizabeth I silver soldino were among the finds, as well as an earring lost by the farmer’s wife years earlier.
John Loran, vice president of the Rotary Club of Royal Wootton Bassett and District, said: “A particularly nice find was a modern day solid silver bracelet and even better, the farmer’s wife was reunited with a treasured earring lost one day out in the fields.
“Fortunately, she had optimistically retained the other one.
“A lot of hard work goes into making a day like this successful.
“We like to ensure that everyone who comes has an enjoyable time, regardless of what they find.”
A variety of Edwardian pennies were found, as well as a bronze-age socketed axe, Roman nummi coin from the House of Constantine, a sovereign penny of Henry VII and a Henry VIII groat.
There were also some Elizabeth I coins, including a solid silver soldino.
“We had a team of people beavering away in the barn to provide cooked food and hot drinks for everyone and obviously setting up and clearing up the site takes a lot of effort, not to mention traffic management during the day,” said John.
The day is thought to have raised more than £5,000 for charity through ticket sales. One of the beneficiaries will be the Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool.
“It is very worthwhile as the participants thoroughly enjoy it and we hope to have raised over £5,000 for charity.
“Some of this will go towards the Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool project, some will go towards the Air Ambulance and some may be kept back for other good causes during the year ahead.
“The club will now start thinking about next year’s rally, the first job being to find a good site, namely one that’s not been studied before and preferably one that’s had human activity on it of archaeological interest.”
Terry Russell, from New Milton in Hampshire, who found the silver Soldino, said: “It was worth coming just for this.
“I’ve been collecting since 1974 and this is the first soldino I’ve ever had.”
Recent donations by the Rotary Club of Royal Wootton Bassett and District include £1,000 to Carers Support Wiltshire, £2,000 to the Life Education Centre, £2,000 to the Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool, £300 to Calabash Trust, £200 to Mind and £250 to Methodist Youth Workers.
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