3,000-year-old Bronze Age tools found in Shropshire are declared treasure

Bronze age tools dating back 3,000 years, discovered in Shropshire, have been declared treasure.

Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery
Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery

An axe head and other items, believed to have been deliberately buried in land near Baschurch about 900BC, were discovered by two men taking part in an organised metal detecting day.

After the treasure trove inquest held at the Shirehall, Shrewsbury, on Thursday the landowner said they were not something he would ever have imagined to be under his land.

The four artefacts were found in March last year, before the coronavirus lockdown.

Senior coroner for Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin, Mr John Ellery, said that because of their significance, the exact site of the find was not being made public.

He said two men, one from Chester and the other from Welshpool, found them while metal detecting on the land.

A report from the British Museum said that the hoard was relatively typical of small, late Bronze Age, mixed tool assemblage found in Shropshire and Marches.

They would have been buried, deliberately, by their Bronze Age owners and over the years would have been broken up by centuries of farming the land.

While one axe was comparable with others found in the region, the other - an axe or chisel - was unusual, longer and slender, the report said. Each was between 10 - 20 centimetres long.

The other tools, gouges, are more usually found in the south east although some were found in The Brogyntyn Hoard near Oswestry and the Guilsfield Hoard over the Welsh border.

Mr Ellery was told that one of the axe heads and a gouge were found within a few metres of each other while the other items were discovered about 150 metres away.

"They were in the same cultivation line, indicative of being moved by agricultural machinery during ploughing," the report said.

The coroner said that Shropshire Museum Service was interested in acquiring the items so that they could be retained in the county.

"There is no doubt that these four objects all date from the same archaeological phase and were deliberately placed together in the ground around 3,000 years ago," he said.

Speaking after the items were declared treasure, the landowner, who did not want to be named for fear of identifying the site, said it had been very exciting when the items had been discovered.

"You never think that something like this is going to be discovered on your doorstep. I have not seen them in person yet, I am looking forward to doing that in future."

Top Stories

More from the Shropshire Star

UK & International News