Sussex police granted extra funding to combat Heritage Crime.

Following on from our story last year on the issue of day hawkers in Dorset, it appears that the problem is spreading eastwards across the country being made apparent by reports that Sussex police have been granted an “absolutely absurd amount” of tax payers money to help combat against a recent spree of heritage crime incidents which have been  happening in broad daylight at protected sites across the southern county.

Early this morning Constable John Piggott from Sussex police released images of two men they would like to speak with in connection to digging without a spade at a protected world war two bomber crash site on Butts hill Near Eastbourne last week. We sent a reporter team down to Brighton police station but they refused to comment when Reporter Phil Maholin suggested the possibly of a connection between the Butts hill incident, and another similar occurrence which happened just down the road a few weeks previously at a protected iron-age hill fort near Worthing. Phil also suggested the whole thing could be a conspiracy and pointed out that the two men in the photographs were dressed very similarly to many leading archeologists and that they could be trying to impersonate, and incriminate metal detectorists to further their agenda of getting strict restrictions placed on the hobby and maybe even a ban.

Regardless of the public inquiries made into whether the two incidents have any real footing or evidence, Sussex police have been granted the cash and will be spending it on state of the art equipment and a range of vehicles designed specifically for catching heritage criminals. We sent Reporter Paul McCoil to speak with a member of the engineering science team behind the radical new vehicles, Dr. Ed Steiner.

PM: So what’s this contraption here,  it looks a bit like a tractor ?

ES: Well Paul, what you are looking at is a Hawk Hunter MKI which is basically a John Deere tractor with increased engine power, and several gizmos and gadgets fitted as standard to aid the appointed heritage officer in disrupting, identifying, and catching illegal metal detectorists, and other less prolific heritage criminals such as “Mud hawks” or rogue field walkers known as “Rimmers”or “Flint nappers”

PM: could you possibly run us through some of the features of the modified vehicle, what’s that gun thing on the back?

ES: That’s the “Green waste Cannon” this little baby is actually just a remolded muck sprayer, but instead of spreading muck , the device is loaded to the teeth with an anti- detectorist formula crafted in police forensic laboratories on advise obtained by working closely with well known archeologist Paul Barfood. She fires a lethal concoction of Ring pulls, shredded coke can, copper nails,  rolled up tinfoil, hot rocks, used syringes and worn Georgian coins, and can contaminate roughly an acre a minute. Paul assures us this will deter metal detectorists.

She also has a ground penetrating radar which can detect frequencies made by disturbing soil thus alerting the heritage officer of any potential digging that may be happening in a 5 mile radius, we are informed that the wave patterns made by detectorists digging are very distinguishable and unlike those made by animals. It is also fitted with an electromagnetic scrambler that can disrupt any devices running between 1- 50 Khz, it also has aquatic capabilities, it is fully submersible with a wide range of features for catching heritage thieves in any rivers or muddy wetland environments. It’s not all about the technology though, the officer is also equipped with some much more basic equipment,  such as a simple net for snaring criminals from the safety of the tractor whilst calling for back up, and a megaphone for shouting at trespassing field walkers, who are definitely at the lower end of heritage crime Spectrum but a menace on the rise none the less.

Several reports have been made recently from popular Sunday walking areas at countryside locations all over the south reporting potential rogue field walkers at work dressed in jeans and  thick woolen jumpers often accompanied by small dogs as a convenient alibi for straying off public rights of way.If you see anyone walking around arable fields with a canine companion and a very distinct arched neck posture with hands folded behind the back , staring at the ground retrieving objects from the soil, please call your local police station immediately.

Ring of power declared Treasure by British Museum.

The one ring of power manufactured by the Dark Lord Sauron (otherwise known as ‘Isildur’s Bane’) found by a Lincolnshire metal detectorist in 2015 has been declared Treasure, a spokesman for the British Museum has confirmed.

Miss Holly Sheet of Grimsby, who discovered the ring last year at an undisclosed location somewhere in the vicinity of Ancaster, said that she initially suspected the ring to be a fake. However, she was quickly convinced of its authenticity after watching Lord of the Rings, subsequently casting the ring into her fire-grate to reveal the glowing black speech lettering around the edge of the object, a feature that only reveals itself on application of extreme heat. Immediately realising the significance of her find, she contacted not only the Coroner and her local FLO, but also the department of fictional, occultist and magical artefacts at the British Museum, whereupon head curator Arthur Weasley was able to advise her on the correct procedure. We contacted Mr Weasley for comment, who gave us the following statement;

‘As the ring is of more than 10% precious metal and thousands of years old, in addition to fulfilling the hidden sub-clauses of the Treasure Act as pertaining to magical artefacts, I am proud to be able to declare it as Treasure. Naturally the discovery of the ring of power is incredibly significant, though this also comes with some dangers. Luckily I was able to step in before any harm was done. Had Miss Sheet put on the ring, she might well have drawn the attention of both the Dark Lord and his Nazgul. Such an act would have undoubtedly resulted in her swift abduction to Mordor by servants of the enemy. The ring will, therefore, be kept here in the vaults of the British Museum, to protect both itself from harm and others from it’s corrupting influence. Never to be used, except in our direst need. It may at times be shown to the public, and we are currently planning a six month exhibition next year which will feature the best of the magical or fictional artefacts within our collections. This may include such objects as the meteoric iron sword of Attila the Hun, Excalibur, the Holy Grail, a magic carpet, and Daenerys Targaryen’s Valyrian steel chastity belt.’

The ring, valued by the Treasure Valuation Committee at £25,000, has caused a certain amount of controversy. Many members of the detecting community have spoken out against the apparently low valuation of the piece, claiming that all the British Museum wants to do is use the ring to destroy the British government and claim ultimate power for itself, while others theorise that the current Director of the British Museum, Hartwig Fischer, has already fallen under its corrupting influence and now answers only to the bidding of Sauron. The Tolkien foundation have already released a lengthy letter from their solicitors asking that as their ancestral intellectual property (and thus, the original owners) the ring should be returned to them, while a certain Mr S Saruman of 3, the Crescent, Isengard, has also written in to stake his claim to the piece, acting under the auspices of ‘the great eye’. Strange events have also followed the discovery of the ring- it was recently revealed in a leaked memo that a number of northern museums had attempted to fundraise together in order to buy the ring and ‘throw off the shackles of the southern invaders, seizing ultimate power’ though this was quickly hushed up by a number of representatives who claimed the memo in fact consisted part of an internal curatorial staff dungeons and dragons game, having no connection to the discovery of the ring whatsoever. A recent attempted break-in at the British Museum involving two men, a wizard, an elf, a dwarf, and four hobbits, is not thought to be connected with the declaration of the ring as treasure.

Feelings are clearly running high on all fronts in reaction to the discovery of this object, but we here at Daily Detectorist feel happy that an artefact of such arcane potential is being safely held at the British Museum. The final hearing on the matter involving all those parties currently laying claim to the object will be held in the British Museum’s large underground basement on the 20th of October, though a spokesman clarified that they are currently in negotiations with the eye of Sauron in lieu of finding a more convenient location to hold the hearing, pending the unavailability of adequate toilet facilities.

Female detectorist sues Garret over tragic pet death.

At 78, Ethel Reed is on the older side of those who engage in our glorious hobby. Such mature detectorists, with their years of experience and long-standing engagement with both newcomers and peers alike, are surely the cornerstone of the coil-swinging world. However, the pensioner is suing Garret over an incident which occurred last year where her pet rabbit, Flopsy IX, died in tragic circumstances. We sent DD reporter Justin Fields to find out more from Miss Reed about the circumstances of the case.

‘So Ethel, tell us what happened.’

‘Well Justin, it was like this. I’d just settled down to watch that nice man Gary Lineaker on the telly with a bottle of wine and some Lancashire Hotpot, when old Flopsy came sidling up to me wanting his din dins. I keeps a nice box of carrots by the side of me comfy armchair so’s I can throw him one now and then while I’m sitting down. Anyway, I reaches into the box and gives him the carrot, which he takes into the kitchin as usual. Anyway, a few minutes later, I hears this funny zapping noise and thumping, followed by quite a delicious meaty or gamey sort of smell. I gets up to see what’s going on and there’s Flopsy, singed and dead on the floor with the carrot next to him! Gave me quite the turn. Of course I called the police, fire-brigade and ambulance, but there was nowt they could do and the sergeant gave me quite a telling off for ‘wasting police time’ or something. Vet come out to see him, and as he was looking at him he picks up the carrot Flopsy were eating and hands it to me, asking ‘what’s this?’. Says I, ‘well, it’s a carrot in’t it?’, to which he responds ‘no it isn’t’. I takes it off him and has a look, and blow me down if I hadn’t thrown Flopsy my own Garret carrot from my detecting gear, which he’d then chewed and electrocuted himself with! I’ve never been so upset in me life, Flopsy was 20th generation pedigree and them bastards have killed him by making their bloody pinpointers the same colour as bloody vegetables! Other rabbits will die soon if they don’t fix this, them’s nothing but a bunch of no good murderers!’

Our interview with Miss Reed was abruptly terminated when our correspondent questioned her about whether her lack of good eyesight and refusal to wear glasses during everyday life may have contributed to the frying of her beloved Flopsy, causing Miss Reed to violently lunge across her living room table. However, the issue has stood and a number of older detectorists have come forward to accuse Garret of causing a hazardous issue by creating tools which both resemble and are nicknamed as the popular orange vegetables. A spokesman for Garret gave the following statement;

‘We sympathise with Miss Reed for her recent bereavement. However, we must stress to all those who furnish us with their patronage that the orange Garret ‘carrot’ pinpointer is NOT suitable for consumption by humans or animals alike. As a measure to prevent this from ever happening again, we have decided to make all our pinpointers purple from now on, and call them the ‘Garret Rabbit’ in commemoration of Flopsy. We also offer Miss Reed a voucher for £500 in order to compensate for her loss.’

Though the Flopsy saga may have been avenged, controversy surrounding pinpointers continues this week. Shaun Badcock of Daventry is attempting to sue Nokta for emotional distress after his wife became addicted to self-pleasuring herself with his probe before running off with an accountant, claiming it gave her better orgasms and contributed to her sexual awakening. We promise to bring you more on this story as we get it.

‘Man in the hat’ theme tune reaches number 1 in Uzbekistan pop music charts.

The self proclaimed ‘man in the hat’ has enjoyed a controversial existence in the world of online Metal Detecting. Some sing his praises from the rooftops, while others decry everything he does and lampoon him for his often exuberant and occasionally ostentatious You tube videos. However, his most recent bit of publicity has come from an unexpected source- the Republic of Uzbekistan. DD Uzbek cultural correspondent Vlad Furqat comes to us direct from the capital city of Tashkent.

‘It’s incredible out here. Everywhere I go people are chanting the words of the man in the hat theme song- set to almost every genre! I can hear house remixes blaring from the clubs, an accordionist playing it on the street, some young Uzbeks rocking it out to a heavy metal version, and down the road in the fancy westernised restaurant there is a piano quartet tinkling out an instrumental version. The song has gone viral overnight and has even penetrated into the Uzbek drugs subculture when a young Uzbek DJ ripped the ‘WOAH, WOAH’ vocals and laid them over a heavy dubstep bassline which reportedly had 1000’s of ravers at a warehouse party skanking out of control.

The reasons behind the popularity of Steve’s theme-song couldn’t be clearer; president Shavkat Mrziyoyev is himself a metal detectorist of some repute in the ‘stans, having personally discovered 651 kurgans (burial mounds) and entire temples stuffed with ritually deposited gold and silver artefacts that hark back to the glory days of silk road cities and camel caravans stretching for miles into the desert. However, he himself has become obsessed with the man in the hat. In a statement Mr Mrziyoyev said the following;

‘I love Steve’s passion and drive with my whole heart, and by extension the heart of all glorious Uzbekistan. I call those who name him ‘twat in the hat’ as COWARDS, and invite them to Uzbek gulags for tea and borscht. How could a man who uses lyrics such as ‘metal detecting and finding lots of gold, searching for anything that’s old’ be labelled as anything other than a musical genius? I invite Steve too come to Uzbekistan, to experience our glorious nation and see for himself how welcoming we are.’

President Mrziyoyev abruptly terminated the interview and had his bodyguards viciously beat our cameraman when one of our production team questioned him as to his human rights policies and reasons for banning certain Uzbek musical acts. However, this did little to marr the atmosphere as we were quickly rushed to the studio where Uzbekistan’s version of ‘Top of the Pops’ was being presented and heartily congratulated us on behalf of our country for producing their current hit single. Though somewhat bemused , we asked what exactly about the song made it so popular. Apparently, the use of folky guitar and upbeat nature makes it absolutely riveting to Uzbeks, starved of virtually any outside musical and cultural influences during the years of communist rule. Government censorship policies (mandated by President Mrziyoyev) have prevented all but metal detecting videos from being available on Uzbek internet, thus the man in the hat’s short yet sweet theme tune has been immediately been seized upon as something currently described by music critics as ‘brave and new’.

River Thames plagued by ‘Mudhawks’

The River Thames, long acknowledged as Britain’s longest archaeological site, is under attack by a new wave of heritage crime, DD maritime correspondent Riva Banks reports.

So-called ‘mudhawks’ often operating under the cover of darkness and at high tide, have been slipping into the dark waters unnoticed, using underwater metal detectors and dredging equipment alongside scuba gear to clandestinely recover artefacts from the river foreshore and bed illegally. This state of affairs has apparently been going on for some months, but was only recently uncovered fully last week when a dead mudhawk was pulled from the sea off Dover, still clad in his scuba gear with London trade tokens and pilgrim’s badges carefully packed away in his finds pouch. Since then, DD has managed to secure an exclusive interview with the so named King of the mudhawks, ‘Big Pete’, who only agreed to talk to our correspondent via withheld phone number.

‘So Pete, why mudhawking?’

‘Well if I’m honest Riva, it’s the thrill of it. Mudlarking is alright and all that, but mudhawking requires a different sort of person with a different level of enjoyment. Any twat can mince down to the river and pull out a couple of objects by eye, but I’ll warrant that going underwater at midnight, swimming against the high tide and battling the river eels is far more exciting. Plus, it pulls in some major wonga. Propa, innit.’

‘I see. But isn’t it frightfully dangerous?’

‘Oh terribly so. I mean, the eels for one, but also the rival gangs of mudhawkers. They’ll clobber you over the head and nick all your gear, leaving you naked and for dead on Tower Bridge. Luckily, that’s easy to explain away to the pigs as being too inebriated the previous night, though it does make for some awkward conversations with the wife and neighbours. The tides are pretty strong as well, usually I anchor myself in with a big steel stake and just hang off it with a rope, but that’s got its own perils too. One bloke’s rope snapped and he ended up off the coast of France, where the border force arrested him as an illegal immigrant attempting to reach Britain. Unfortunately they refused to believe his story and deported him to Albania, though none of us have heard of him since. Scrawny Jim (all mudlarks have their own imaginative nicknames- Ed.), a mate of mine, he was the victim of a sex attack by a horny dolphin in the estuary and had to undergo months of therapy to get rid of the flashbacks.’

‘Is it really worth it then?’

‘Probably not, considering that Jim’s arsehole is still four times its natural size. But you know, I’ve a wife and kids to feed, 2 GCSEs and a particularly nasty STD so I’m not exactly employment material.’

‘Thanks for your time, Pete.’

As the above interview indicates, mudhawking has evidently attracted the very dregs of society. But it has also attracted some bigger players. Last month, a twenty strong team was arrested on the foreshore, who were systematically digging out lumps of river mud to sell on Ebay at £20 a pound, while only a few days ago a JCB and driver sank into the foreshore at Bankside when Korean entrepreneur Sni Ki Pu attempted to remove an entire section of in-situ Medieval wooden jetty to preserve and exhibit in his Seoul home, claiming that it ‘brought eastern and western aesthetics together’ to museum curators who raged at him for his foolhardy actions.

The actions of mudhawks and those who would loot the river of its heritage have been strongly called out by a number of bodies, and police forces based on the river as well as the surrounding boroughs have undergone specialist training in order to adequately deal with the new threat. Several particularly vulnerable areas of river foreshore have already been systematically excavated and concreted over, in addition to a programme of drag-netting by fishing trawlers in areas often targeted by the adventurous heritage thieves, with the aim to snare them and their illegal hauls. Plans for stronger measures, such as the releasing of noxious substances into the river in order to kill or deter mudhawks, have sadly been condemned and scrapped by a number of conservation bodies, as has the suggestion made by the world famous yet fabulously overzealous ‘Londinium Mudmoocher’ Facebook page that those caught should be exhibited in a special tank within the London Aquarium. A number of mudlarks themselves are rumoured to have set up a special task force in order to patrol the riverside paths with spotlights, though attempts to ascertain this fact have thus far been unsuccessful.

The future seems uncertain for how exactly this new brand of heritage crime will affect the Thames foreshore, though for the moment it seems to have been brought under control by the vigilance of both its legal searchers and the police. Daily Detectorist will in the future be focusing far more on our sacred river, and looks forward to a new age of co-operation with a different side of the searching community.

Boris Johnson to rebuild Hadrian’s wall if Scotland gain UK independence.

In the wake of the impending possibility of a Scottish separation from the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson has suggested that repairing Hadrian’s wall and raising it by several hundred feet could be a permanent and cost effective way of keeping those pesky Pict’s in the mountains where they belong. We Sent DD’s patriotic yet impartial and well-spoken resident Scotsman Paul McCoil to a conference in Westminster to take a statement from the future prime minister.

‘I’ve had it up to my fringe with that wasp chewing Scottish bulldog Nicola Sturgeon, if she believes Scotland can cope alone without subsistence from England’s royal treasury she clearly has delusions of grandeur. For starters everybody knows the Scots are considered moderately unenthusiastic when pertaining to being parted from hard earned money and from an economical perspective that’s a critically flawed foundation to build an empire on, and lest we forget England has been the dominant country in the United Kingdom love story since a time long before the stone age. Obviously the Aberdeen angus beef market which makes up around 50% of Scotland’s exports is likely to have a knock on effect on the economy, but I say let’s eat English beef, yes it’s riddled with BSE and bovine TB, and even occasionally mixed with horse meat at the hands of corporate owned supermarket giants, but we must start looking closer to home at our farmers for help, and support our economy by shopping locally. Stop drinking Scotch whiskey and reach for a bottle of traditional English cider made from home-grown apples, Ditch the overly-intensively farmed Scottish salmon and swap for native river dwelling fish such as rainbow trout, and speaking of which, I believe Nicola Sturgeon (who I like to secretly call Shaveheart because of her moustache) has said things so unforgivable that our countries relationship is now beyond repair. I suggest that a complete overhaul of the UK is in order and we will be renaming the confederation to ” The United States of England”. If elected as the new conservative leader I promise that as your leader, the first thing i will do for the country is repair, rebuild, and reshape various sections of the old Roman structure Hadrian’s wall, and force the Scots back up the high road. I also plan to raise the wall by a further 200 Feet, improving the design and modifying the original foundations. With full financial and emotional support from America I am certain that together we can divide England from Scotland and live separately as we once did in Roman times.

Unconvinced by Boris’s claims We Sent DD’s Anne Tickwitty over to speak with Donald Trump

DT: Hiya toots, fancy coming back to the hotel for a drink after the interview?

Stage manager: MR TRUMP THE MICROPHONE IS ON!

DT: God Dammit what is it with you British reporters, what do you want I’m incredibly busy?

AT: Is it true you’re financially and emotionally backing the reformation of the British confederation and renaming it to the United States of England?

DT: Sure why not, we buy our beef from Brazil and apart from my golf course which I plan to make an independent state within Scotland, I feel the country has nothing more to offer America, I mean c’mon the dudes wear the skirts and the chicks wear the trousers.

AT: Are you supporting the massive refurbishment operation involved in reconstructing Hadrian’s wall?

DT: Yes, yes I am. The idea came to us when Boris joined me for dinner one evening at my London apartment in Islington, he stayed for few a few hours and talked about politics and life, we then watched an episode of Game of thrones when around half way through the show he jokingly suggested building a wall as large as the one at castle black across England separating it from Scotland, and then said” but we couldn’t afford something like that if we left the EU, could we?”

DT: To which I  replied, ” I have very deep pockets Mr. Johnson and if  you follow our plan to form the United States of England I feel that anything is possible.”

We now go home to Reporter Izzy Diggins who is currently observing a rant online from detectorist and Pseudo-Facebook politician Callum Loves.

‘Fuck it build the wall, I’m retreating north with a brigade of Bremain supporting left wing associates and we’re off to start a new Pict colony in Scotland and  I’m going to renounce my English citizenship. I’ve really had it with those closet racist, self- serving right wing fuck nuts, they’ve really done it this time voting for Brexit,Democracy just isn’t fair.  I’ve seen this coming for years and have been making preparations for the day that my dream of a new age Pict colony in the Grampian mountains on the edge of the highlands becomes a reality, and my ambition, no, My destiny is to rescue the British Isles from the English and put woad body art back on the cultural map. I also propose that Cornwall, Wales, and Ireland should follow suit in reforming the true Celtic nations and help fightback against the age old problem of English tyranny.’

For further information or to find employment paid a standard minimum wage on the Hadrian’s wall restoration project please contact Boris Johnson directly on twitter @BorisJohnson.

Syrian metal detectorists loot ancient sites across the EU “England is next”

With a growing number of Syrian migrants planning to enter the UK before the Brexit referendum, the notion that a large group of Syrian detectorists are slowly detecting their way across Europe in an effort to loot sites, sell the booty, and pay their way into the UK, is probably not an alarming one. But as we discovered on Facebook this morning the group have no intention of participating in responsible, EU regulated metal detecting and even boasted of their plans to loot ancient barrows and tumuli in the UK.

The group lead by a man named Aasif Fayada Haamid have been on the move for over 2 months after fleeing the war torn town of Al-Rastan in Syria which is strategically placed along the road linking Damascus and Aleppo and was once a Roman province. They have been looting burials and ancient sites armed with metal detectors and have regularly documented their activities on social media:

“We have just detectored site of ancient graves in Turkey and Abu believes they date to the Hittite era. Today was great success with lots of bronze artefacts and bundles of old pottery making an appearance, we should be able to sell this things and provide enough euros for us to continue our journey westwards through Bulgaria, maybe here we can find the illusive Bulgarian gold and then buy ourselves direct passage to Gatwick airport. Once we arrive there finally we can dig up the Tumuli and burials which we have discovered on old English treasure map which we think was written by a king called Ordnance Survey”

We Sent Paul McCoil to speak with Ceo of Ordnance Survey ltd Nigel Clifford who has dismissed claims that his maps could be offering direct means for refugees and other would be heritage criminals to locate and plunder ancient sites of importance.

“Look Paul, What people do with our maps is not mine nor the companies responsibility, and quite frankly I’m getting fed up with people blaming us for enabling Nighthawkers to go about their rotten business. We provide vital information to people of leisure from hikers to birdwatchers all over the country and promote a healthy outdoor lifestyle packed with adventure, obviously a few less reputable folks are going to take advantage of the fact we publish historical attractions in broad detail for them to visit, but unfortunately we cannot discriminate on who we sell our maps to. Now I’m very busy and don’t really have time for these low grade news stations, so that’s all your getting.

sharing fears of hundreds of female detectorists in the UK, DD’s own Anne Tickwitty gives her own thoughts on the matter.

” It’s utterly disgusting how these animals treat and view women, can we expect them to have any more respect for our heritage or detecting laws? I bloody well doubt it. If we don’t vote out I fear the Syrian migrants will penetrate the British detecting scene and women will no longer feel safe at rallies, and who can blame them? it’s bad enough we still have a few Brits stuck in the 1950’s and haven’t grasped the concept of equal rights, only last week I was out in a field just outside Codford in Wiltshire when a guy came up to me and…..

OK thanks Anne that’s enough on that one. The Daily Detectorist fully supports opening our boarders to Syrian detectorists,  but only if they swap their traditional clothing for camouflage and adopt our culture.

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