Metal Detecting Discussions => Metal Detecting Stories => Topic started by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:16:31 AM

Title: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:16:31 AM
Year three in the life of

Who would have thought that 3 years and 45 rallies could fly past so quickly? Its  that time of year again for the annual review including some of the highlights of the past 12 months.

The year started with the awful news that DW regular FarmerPhil had sadly passed away. He was a close friend to Casa Dos, Melonhead, OzzyHead Jo and Paul having all spent many days detecting together. In memory of Phil, his mate Kev has introduced the “Farmer Phil Memorial Shield” which is a points system for finds on DW rallies. Kev does a great job running this and its kind of apt that the runaway leader is he of the melon shaped head!

We have once again witnessed numerous new members join the growing family that is Detectingwales having swelled our ranks to nearly 1500 members. Many of these “newbies” have become regular message board contributors and rally goers and a big welcome on board goes to Deadlock, Heather, Mike the Fob, Doddy10, IFINDNOTHING, Jassy, Mungo, Zeus, Bulbus, Jon 1987, Ben Watergent, Relichunting, Herbie, Wayne, MarkyMark, Ysbyty Mike and anyone else I have forgotten.

There have been well over 2 million page turns alone on DW in the past year, with 114,000 posts within a total of 12,000 topics. Tap “detecting” and “Wales” into any search engine in the world now and we turn up as the number one result. That’s down to you lot - the members who ensure that the topics are on the whole interesting, relevant and informative. I couldn’t sleep a few nights ago and logged in at 1am to find there were 17 people on Detectingwales in the middle of the night – absolutely astonishing!

There have been numerous firsts for members this year including Napoleon, Nobby, IFINDNOTHING and Scrappy finding their first hammered coins, John1987 with a gold ring, Colin with a socketed axe head, and even Roman Ray discovered a Roman coin!

The private members club for gold coin finders had at least four new recruits this year with Proconsul, Handyman, Rambo and Beachboy all finding gold coins. It’s a club we all aspire to join.

Those with sand between their toes, also known as “The Beachies” have done really well, with Dances with Badgers leading the way, closely followed in hot pursuit by Jassy, Faymous and Joel. Its amazing to see how much gold these guys are finding on our local beaches and long may their good fortune continue.

Behaviour has once again been impeccable with not a single site ban this year – although many of you have asked me to get rid of RJM (aka Spartacus – the Destroyer of Romans)! Likewise on the rallies apart from the occasional badly filled hole or bit of rubbish left, as a rule the fields are left in excellent condition. This is highlighted by the fact that we have 40 or so farms in our portfolio, all of which are happy to have us back. Well done to the Rally Stewards who are now a permanent fixture and a great assistance on the day.

A huge debt of thanks goes to all the established moderators and the three new ones (Nobby, Napoleon and Casa Dos) who help run this site – we couldn’t do it without you guys. Equally the site wouldn’t be the same without The Doc, WBM, Handyman and Chef’s knowledge and ability to identify the vast majority of our finds. Thanks for your help. Sorry if I have missed out any other regular contributors but it’s a Hell of a lot to remember.

Our rallies have taken us far and wide with a record breaking 20 events to date this year. We have seen increased attendance by our North and West Walian brothers, along with members from Scotland, all over England and even as far as a guest from Canada.

Onto the Rally Highlights:

Farmer Phil Rally. There was a great turn out for the first rally of the year held in honour of Farmer Phil. The day started with an apt round of applause and was followed by some lovely finds. The stand out finds suitably fell to OzzyHead Jo and Melonhead who whilst strangely following a “Congratulations” balloon happened upon a scarce milled Lizzy sixpence and a stunning Charles 1st Half Crown. Somebody was certainly looking after them!

Rally of the Rings. This was the rally where it poured down all day and we took over a container in desperate need of shelter. Some of the standout finds included a gold posy ring to Melonhead, Willowtree’s Victorian maundy penny and an Edward hammered coin for Richard16.5DD. The wettest DW rally we have ever held!

Plucked Cherries Rally. For this rally we headed over the bridge to an area of Roman and Medieval pedigree and we were not to be disappointed. Finds included numerous first hammered coins for members and some larger denominations for Villan and even myself! A smattering of Roman including denari and fibulas turned up, but I think the highlight of the day was watching 2 bulls chase a collection of DW members across a pasture! In fairness the bulls had escaped an electric fence, so no one was to blame – but it did look funny!

The Rambo Rally. A cold day near Bristol saw 40+ members brave the weather along with three Finds Liason Officers. The day started with a several hammered coins including a Lizzy Shilling dated 1660 for myself and the first ever hammered for Napoleon – the happy Frenchman, who promptly found a second straight after. I think the day truly belonged to Rambo though who surfaced a gold quarter guinea dating to 1762 - a stunning find.

5 Willies Rally. Saw us head to the home of the cowboy hat for a well attended rally. Bizzarely it was a rally dominated by William III silver love tokens, with IFINDNOTHING finding the first of six for the day. Plenty of other milled silver turned up including a silver matchbox.

Mad Magpies Rally. We are into April now and for this rally lots of new faces turned up on a scorching day. In total 16 hammered coins surfaced, along with a Bronze Roman fishy item, a cracking spindle whorl for Casa Dos and numerous other finds. This was the rally with the magpie in the box acting as a lure to catch other magpies. It may have seemed barbaric, but the reason was that the magpies had been killing the lambs by pecking out their eyes. Someone released it but we have all learnt that from now on we don’t tamper in farm practices.

Lord of the Flies Rally. Back to the same farm, but TaffLaff’s car blew up en-route! We were greeted to piles of fresh manure and swarms of flies on this day – lovely. On the finds front the stand outs were a Lizzy Shilling for Mrs Parki John and a gold and ruby ring for Seasider.

Shadow of the Tor Rally. We headed in numbers to Glastonbury for Rally 32 and it was a cracker. Bobkoi started the day with a Charles 1st shilling. He was quickly joined by Scrappy finding his first hammered coin ever in the shape of an Edward penny. Hipster turned up a Bronze Age gouge and Nobby joined the first hammered club with a Lizzy sixpence. Laura – the local FLO recorded 29 finds of historical interest in total.

Mad Cows & Happy Wives Rally.  Ademinelab got this rally off to a great start by promptly finding a gold earring the farmer’s wife has lost – which left her over the moon. Other finds included a Roman denari for Welshbreed and a gothic florin for Mrs Stampy.

Hammeredfest – The Sequel. We had waited 2 years to revisit this site and within minutes of the rally starting Tom Tom had found a cracking Scottish hammered coin. This was soon followed by numerous hammered coinage for the 25 members. IFINDNOTHING had his first hammered in 30 years on and off detecting. John Talbot had a brace of hammered coins. Even Chef got in on the action with a cut half. Avalon’s gold test pit providing an interesting draw for members to test their machine on. The total for the day was 14 hammered coins for 25 members. A great ratio.

Wacky Races Rally. This was the rally that led to us all driving like loons desperately trying to find the fields after the farmer changed the location at the last minute. It resulted in plenty of milled silver and a few hammered coins, with the find of the day being Alan’s silver buckle ring.

Two Dayer. The 3rd annual Detectingwales Two Day event was held in the VOG and saw over 30 members camping over night. BigHoni provided us with a marquee which was the centre for entertainment in the night. Finds on the first day included Melonhead’s half crown of Charles II dated 1679 and a further 10 hammered coins for various members. John turned up a denari and also won the main raffle prize of a GPS machine kindly donated by Nomad. Steven King managed a trumpet brooch, but the find of the day fell to young Joe (grandson of Bob) who discovered a silver bodkin that is now winding its way through the Treasure Act. Mike the Fobs scrap bucket for charity made its first appearance and was heavily used by members and has since become a regular on our rallies.
The most memorable part of the day must have been the hours spent by around 10 DW members trying to break into a locked car that ultimately led to the now renowned member that is Deadlock! The master lock pick of DW turned out to be Treorchy’s finest – TaffLaff!

Day 2 saw new fields and more Roman denari, short crosses, Tudor coinage and the outstanding find that was a Norman hammered coin that was duly reported. A scare find for Welsh soil.

Record Breaking Rally.  Held in a setting full of Roman and Medieval promise. Within the first 10 minutes Proconsul unearthed a gold third guinea. This rally was attended by a relative of Handyman called Jeff who had come all the way from Canada. He managed to find a battered hammered coin and was promptly given a Roman and another hammered coin by Tom Tom and JJ. Numerous hammered coins popped up all day particularly from a small area in the furthest field. The stand out find was a bronze Roman key handle in the shape of a boars head with two further faces on it discovered by Jaydogg. Its with the Museum of Wales awaiting a full report.

Bucket of Buckles Rally. This event happened in early September and included finds of a silver Turkish coin for MiketheFob, a sword belt hanger for Nomad and as the title suggests numerous buckles.

Raining Hammered Coins. Back to the VOG for this one with BeachBoy have a cracking day resulting in 4 hammered coins and a gold Vicky half sovereign. Others amongst the hammered coins included Roman Ray, DuggyPuggy, Nobby and Heather. Ancient Pat joined in with a silver clog clasp and the find of the day was once again Melonhead with a medieval silver ring that is currently going through the Treasure Act.

Paulywow Rally. In late September Paulywow helped DW find land, and we headed over the bridge en-mass. Dave Ha did particularly well with 3 medieval coins, Da Monkey had a Lizzy penny, MarkyMarks lady had a Lizzy sixpence, and Steven King pulled out a shilling of James 1st which had the profile deliberately removed.

The Force was not Strong Rally. Thanks to Yoda, CoinDemon and Relichunting we travelled again over the bridge, and Chef managed to find an answer to what those ubiquitous bronze rings we find actually are, by finding some intact on a horse bridle. Other unusual finds included a gurkha knife, a Roman sestertious and The Doc found a 18ct gold ring with sapphires and diamonds.

T-Shirts in November Rally. We returned for a third visit to Cardiff East and the weather was so fine it was a day for t-shirts. Very odd considering this time last year snow was the order of the day. Staterchaser found a middle Bronze Age palstave axe head minus its blade. Another lovely find by Casa Dos was a groat in stunning condition apart from the fact it had been ripped in half by the plough. It looked like it had recently happened and underlines how important metal detecting truly is in the recovery of coins and artefacts before they are lost or damaged forever.

Romans & Rolexs. Late November and just over the bridge the clans gathered. A smattering of Roman finds including coins, fibulas, lock part and a ring turned up, along with an early Bronze Age flat axe for Mungo. It wasn’t all about the history though, as Hammerd found a ladies Rolex watch. The verdict is still out on whether it is real or not, but an unusual find all the same.

Santa Hats & Rebellion! The final rally of the year saw 70+ members don their santa hats and dodge the mud for a wonderful days detecting. There were finds a plenty with Rambo finding a silver stater, Passingclod his first Roman and numerous other medieval and Roman finds turning up. A quality rally to end what has been a stellar year on the rally front.

With the end of the year in sight, we are heading into our fourth year and already have a handful of rallies lined up. Some of them are returns to productive previous farms, and others are in completely new territories for us. As usual we will be having the annual two day event in the summer and if you have any location ideas, feel free to get in touch via a private message. I think Cardiff Castle is out this year!  

We still feature prominently in the leading Detecting magazine in the World with Detectingwales having been represented in 30 articles to date. If anyone ever has an interesting find that they want featured, just get in touch and that can be easily arranged.

Plans are still in progress for potentially a Wales V Scotland detecting event with the blossoming It would probably take place somewhere equal distance between us and would take the form of a 2 dayer. More news to follow on that when we have it.

All of this would not have been possible without the tireless work of TaffLaff and Proconsul. They really are the two most important people on DW as without one the rallys wouldn’t happen and without the other the site wouldn’t even exist! A huge thanks to both of you.

May 2012 be a year full of unexpected discoveries, good health for all and many laughs.  

Keep the Faith.

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:17:47 AM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:19:10 AM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:20:19 AM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:21:51 AM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:23:18 AM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:24:43 AM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:26:17 AM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:27:33 AM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:28:59 AM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 20, 2011, 10:32:31 AM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Napoleon on December 20, 2011, 11:16:06 AM
Hi Neil , that is the best read i seen for a very long time ;D i am going to call you  the Welsh Jean de la Fontaine , well i will never forgot the Rambo Rally thats for sure , in the morning i was telling Dance with Badgers if i do find a hammered that day i will do a silver dance and i did Beach Viv and Zorro was near me when i find the first one,  i still remember exactly where i find them, the exact spot, I remember Handy man Alan saying to go to the top field and i should find one , so we went with DWB after 10 minutes in this field had a very strange signal not the big bang signal but a nice clear tone well i dig and i seen the coin just there looking at me first i was thinking was a button soon i start to see some details i just went crazy  ;D oh good i even phone my dad back home lol and the whole familly , well 20 minutes later went to the opposite field i was there on my own i mean was no one detectorist there strange after 20 minutes again a same signals and who turned up just here near me while i was digging  it was Monsieur Geoff (Proconsul) i think is said  its a hammered well something like that  and you know what it was, i said to Geoff you are my witness you have seen it live ,oh god i was happy suddently the field was busy with few detectorists lol , monsieur john maximus  stayed there till dark lol . that was a very special day to me on a rally my best rally to remember for a very long time . i still got this two coins in a frame and they will not move from here .Voila et merci beaucoup . Wish you all loads of luck for 2012 . Nordine.

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Tafflaff (Rob) on December 20, 2011, 01:19:47 PM
If I may use a well known Neil saying  "Back of the net fella" !

Really enjoyed that round up. I still remember my first rally (DW's 1st as well)  and what struck me was how helpful and friendly everyone were. Bring on the New year - Land is getting trickier to acquire but as long as we look after the farmers, and treat them with the respect they deserve we'll always have DW and always have Rallies.

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: beachboy (viv) on December 20, 2011, 01:40:10 PM
what a brilliant write up Neil it shows why this is the best detecting forum around and that's thanks to you, rob, Geoff, chef,doc for his amazing knowledge ,ray,casa all the stewards and a great bunch of members thank you all for a smashing 2011 and looking forward to seeing you all in 2012 again thanks.Viv

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: handyman [Alan} on December 20, 2011, 02:56:03 PM
A first class summary Neil.

It brough back many memories along the way. I recall telling Napoleon which area to work and to go very slowly. Mrs H and i then went off for lunch, and on our return found a beaming frenchman with a smile as wide as the bristol channel! Well done Napoleon

I'd like to say a huge thank you to Taff, Proconsul, Neil for making DW what it is today, the number 1 detecting forum. A huge thank you also to the others who contribute either as stewards on rallies, moderators and advisors in the field and on the forum.

A particular thank you must also go to all the hardworking FLO's who turn up to the rallies and record the finds. Thank you very much indeed.

Finally, a huge thank you to all who gave my Canadian cousin a very warm welsh welcome and a memorable days detecting. He is now very proud of his Welsh heritage, and appreciates the finer points of Wales history.

We wish you all a very successful 2012 and may you all have many interesting finds along the way.


Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Mike on December 20, 2011, 04:01:03 PM
superb as always neil , well done

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: ysbytymike on December 20, 2011, 04:07:42 PM
Excellent round-up Neil. Although I've only been detecting around five months I've really enjoyed the experience and met some fantastic people
during my time with DW.
Really looking forward to 2012 and another year of adventure and learning.


Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: bymatt666 (byron) on December 20, 2011, 04:15:35 PM
a great round up of the years activities neil...well done......many thanks to all who contributed  to the continued success of DW......i've been a member since day one and am very proud to be a member of this great site.....long may we prosper !......byron

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Kev on December 20, 2011, 04:17:49 PM
Neil has that all happened in three years ,cant believe it ,the thing is as well as others i have made some many friends since i joined D.W. ,if it wasn't for D.W. i would have not meet my good mate Melonhead and he would have not meet Farmer Phil who  you have started off this post about him passing , It was me that got Farmer Phil to come along on the D.W. rallies, i will be putting up a post about Farmer Phil on Xmas eve as a little tribute to him as he passed away early hours of Xmas eve a year then.So its D.W. that as got everyone together and as not just a detecting website but also got people to have lots of not just detectorists but friendships made as well.And a great write up as well Neil a really nice read about D.W. and as  brought a lot of great memories back as well .D.W. site as gone from strength to strength and nice to see all new and old members bonding so well.keep up the good work   Proconsul & Taff & Neil, and all the rest of as . Hope all members have a great 2012 detecting year ahead. ;)

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: ysbytymike on December 20, 2011, 05:02:46 PM
You'll have to excuse me here, never having met Farmer Phil but his memory is with everybody who did know him.
Just a thought but why not make the first rally of every year the 'Farmer Phil Memorial Rally' or something along those lines. These rallies are given names anyway so make it mean something?
As I said, just a thought.

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: DEADLOCK on December 20, 2011, 05:07:23 PM
I would just liked to thank DW for warm support and fantastic rallies and have learned so much from this site. Would like to wish a merry christmas and happy new year.!

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: gijan on December 20, 2011, 05:43:59 PM

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: herbie on December 20, 2011, 06:29:47 PM
Brilliant write up Neil, I've thoroughly enjoyed the DW rallies I've attended, what a great group of people, hopefully will get to many more next year. ;D

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Villan (Neil) on December 20, 2011, 06:33:19 PM
A great review there Neil,nice one ;)
Thank you and everyone else involved in Detecting Wales,it is so much more than a forum and I'm very pleased I am able to be a part of it.
Good luck to all for the coming year and merry Christmas to you all ;)

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Mungo on December 20, 2011, 08:08:50 PM
Well done all involved in DW............ 8) 8) 8)

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: The Doc on December 20, 2011, 08:24:16 PM
Thanks for a great write-up Neil - brings back some great memories.

Thanks to all the team for making it such a great year and let's hope 2012 is equally successful for DW  :)

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Chef Geoff on December 20, 2011, 08:52:03 PM
A great summary Neil of another great year, as DW goes from strength to strength.  A personal thanks to Rob (Taff) for being great company over so many days out and also to Pipster, Deadlock, Ray,John, Mark, and all those others that have allowed me the pleasure of detecting with them over the year.
And a big thanks also to Peter (Doc) for making me shift myself and learn how to id coins a bit better ;)
Here's hoping you all have a fantastic years detecting in 2012 and find some more fabulous items to adorn the annals of DW.
I won't be around on here quite as much next year but if I can be of any help I'll only be a PM or email/phone call away so feel free.
Have a great Christmas one and all ;)

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: colin on December 20, 2011, 09:10:49 PM
great write up neil, you, geoff, taff and the others that organise and find these farms for us to have rallies on deserve a great deal of credit,thanks.

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: dances with badgers on December 21, 2011, 06:19:47 AM
excellent right up neil as usual and lets all see if we can make next year a better one .merry xmas everyone .mike :)

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: waltonbasinman on December 21, 2011, 10:51:12 AM
Quality summary from a great year that has gone from strength to strength. Well done Geoff, Neil, Rob and all who contribute to the number one web based Detecting site.

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: jaydogg on December 21, 2011, 05:15:23 PM
Oh bravo Neil bravo, you must have quite a memory on you to remember all the finer points of this years detecting. Getting burnt to a crisp on the Mad Magpies Rally was memorable (for the wrong reasons) for me. Can’t believe its been three years already though.  :o

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: jaydogg on December 21, 2011, 05:18:21 PM
First DW rally photo which I'm sure those who attended will remember that it was in the Vale. Mostly members of the Cardiff Scan Club, Swansea club et al back then. Shows how much DW has evolved.

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Dyson on December 21, 2011, 05:54:32 PM
Nice write up Neil this club has got to be one of the friendlyest club around the rallies are a pleasure to go on. a MERRY CHRISTMAS to you  all

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: proconsul on December 21, 2011, 08:58:01 PM
An excellent write up as usual, Neil. I think I ought to just point out the excellent job that Neil does as Admin of the site and all the hard work he puts into DW, not to mention the hours of work that go into the rally reports for DW and the DW articles he does for Treasure Hunting magazine.

It would be very hard for us to organise rallies without the land finding and negotiating skills of Rob (Tafflaff). He really has found us some fabulous farms over the last year.

Thanks also to all the moderators who keep the site running smoothly and the rally stewards.

Let's try to make 2012 and even better year for DW than 2011 was.


Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Neil on December 21, 2011, 09:49:14 PM
Cheers all, much appreciated - I'm begining to blush a tad! ;)

Lovely photo Jaydogg - I make it 18 of that photo who are still active DW members today. It was the first time I got to meet my buddy TaffLaff as well - a great rally from Altinkum to get the ball rolling.

Heres the latest group shot.

May there be many more in 2012!


Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Roman (Ray) on December 21, 2011, 10:55:12 PM
exellant write up neil as useual mate.thanks for all the effort and time you put into these great storys neil.also a big thank you to proconsul for making the best detecting website on the planet. and all the hard work you puts into these great ralleys..and also a big thank you to tafflaff for all the land found for these great ralleys should be crowned fella king of the land it up rob great stuff.
thanks also to all the moderators for keeping the forum running smooth throught the year.and also thanks to the stewards..thanks to pete the doc and chef (geoff) for time I.Ding the artefact and coins throught the year cheers lads.
and i wish all members a very merry christmas and a happy new year..
love. ;D

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: rjm on December 22, 2011, 07:51:24 AM

Merry Christmas to all and let's hope 2012 is as good as well.

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: JRD on December 22, 2011, 09:49:58 AM
Great write up Neil - enjoyed that and thanks to You, Rob and Geoff and all the admin staff for a great site and club to be part of.

Here is hoping 2012 will be even better.

Title: Re: Year three in the life of 2011
Post by: Findmetoo on May 08, 2012, 09:41:50 PM
Great read, I have sent it to my family in Australia, showing them what a great bunch of mates I have and what I might find if I'm lucky.

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