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Bronze Age hoard stays in county as Persimmon Homes donates its share

27 May 2020

A Bronze Age hoard discovered on a new Portchester housing development will stay in the county thanks to a regional Persimmon Homes and a Hampshire charity.

The hoard was discovered by a metal detectorist on land north of Cranleigh Road where Persimmon Homes South Coast has built 120 new homes at its Harbourside View development.

The find, which was declared treasure under the stipulations of the Treasure Act 1996 (Designation Order 2002), was assessed by the British Museum and is a Middle Bronze Age ornament hoard.

It consists of two Liss arm rings, an unlooped palstave axe, a quoit-headed pin, a knife/razor fragment and a fragment of a spear tip.

Persimmon Homes South Coast has waived its ex-gratia award, enabling charity Hampshire Cultural Trust to acquire the artefacts.

Matt Paine, managing director of Persimmon Homes South Coast, said: “We were delighted to be able to support Hampshire Cultural Trust in this way to help ensure that these important artefacts remain in the county.”

The trust was established as an independent charity in 2014 to promote Hampshire as a county that offers outstanding cultural experiences. It funds and manages 23 attractions, from museums to galleries to art centres, and cares for 2.5 million objects relating to Hampshire’s rich and internationally important cultural heritage.

“This find gives a rare insight into prehistoric adornment and technology. We are delighted that we have been able to obtain it and are grateful to Persimmon Homes South Coast for waiving its ex-gratia reward,” commented Ross Turle, curatorial liaison manager at the trust.”

“The find is fascinating and we were particularly interested in the quoit pin. The bend in the end of the pin is believed to be damage from repeated use, possibly from being pushed through the fabric of a cloak. It seems to be an object particular to the southern part of England and may be an artefact purely of native origin.”

“There have not been that many found, perhaps 60 to 80, and the acquisition is important because the Hampshire collection does not have any, while the Winchester collection only has one fragment.”

“The axe, which we aim to display in the future, is of Norman type and complements the trust’s existing Bronze Age collection.”

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