Metal Detecting Discussions => Metal Detecting Stories => Topic started by: Neil on December 22, 2014, 03:31:10 PM

Title: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Neil on December 22, 2014, 03:31:10 PM
Year Six in the life of Detecting wales

That’s year six over and done with at Detecting Wales, so as has become an annual event I thought I’d quickly recap the year with some of the more memorable moments.

As I am getting older, I seem to forget more than I remember, so please accept my profound apologies for anyone I have omitted from this review.  It is not intentional and feel free to add any stand out moments or finds yourself at the end of the thread.

For a change I think we will start with the stats. Unbelievably we have now achieved a mind boggling total page views of 24 million! That’s the population of Romania! We have over 2800 members, many of whom are more active than we realise. It’s not uncommon for a lot of members to hide in the shadows and purely use DW as a reference site or for an interesting read. That’s fine, but if you would like to get more involved then feel free to post away. We are a friendly bunch, and I can assure you the more you put in the more you’ll get out. As I type this there are 55 online.

We currently have over 10,600 page views per day, with an average of 83 new posts each day, totalling just shy of 200,000 posts!

Loads of new members arrived at our door during 2014 and those that have taken the bull by the horns include: JCB Jones, Jonnietaz1995, Chantal Poole, Metal Monster, Nemesis, Kent , Doug, Jimi Nugget, David995, John Winter and Resurgam. Welcome on board chaps, I hope its been an informative year for you at DW.

Unfortunately the detecting community has lost several members during the year and our thoughts go out to the friends and family of the following:

Adrian Wall (DW)
John Bowen (SCAN)
Colin Hanson (FID)

On a happier note, this year DW has actively supported the North Wales Dirt Diggers via hosting their forum since March 2014. They appear to have gone from strength to strength, and they regularly hold rallies and meetings. Long may this continue.

We have uncovered some outstanding historically important finds this year. On the way ticking off all areas of this treasured isles history. There have been some remarkable individual finds by members, and in no particular order of importance these include:

Wet Feet Again – Edward Quarter Noble
Welsh John – Medieval silver ring relating to ~Black Sulphur / Satanic Cross
Ace (Paul) - an 1866 Half Sovereign
Dom R – Purse loss of four Charles 1st shillings in May
Hammered - Bronze Age Spear Head
Shungav – Medieval Sword Chape
Deadlock – Saxon Coin dating 710-760AD
Kent – Saxon coin of Harold 1st Penny 1036-1038
LegioIIAugustus – Jubilee head half sovereign
Celtic Spikey - a silver Durotrigian unit from a badger set
Chef Geoff - a Saxon continental porcupine sceat 695-750

The moderators have been fantastic and certainly helped out on numerous occasion, whether it be moderating the odd post or occasional spammer or ramblings of a drunken member  ;) or importantly liaising with farmers and helping on rally days. A great big warm handshake and thanks aplenty go to Deadlock, Nobby, Handyman, Da Monkey and Hotmill.

Rally days wouldn’t be the same without the knowledgeable overviews from Chef, and although I have to badger and cajole him into doing it on each occasion, deep down he enjoys it!

We are blessed at DW in having a wealth of knowledge amongst our members that is the envy of numerous other detecting web sites, and for that matter some museums! The ‘Any Idea What It Is?’ award and a huge debt of thanks goes to Chef, Dale, Celtic Spikey, Probono, Handyman and of course The Doc.

An equally huge nod of the head and festive handshake must also be given to Proconsol and TaffLaff, both of whom work tirelessly away at our head office to keep the website running and the rallies flowing.

Behaviour at our rallies has been impeccable with no reports of anyone “hawking” the land after a rally, and to date no complaints from any of the farmers regarding the condition the land has been left in. This is highlighted by the fact that they want us to go back to their farms and long may it continue. We have a portfolio now of over 60 farms that are happy to entertain us, land and weather permitting.

This year we have held 16 rallies, which is above our normal average of 14 a year. Taff Laff has taken us far and wide from The Vale to Hereford to Wiltshire. What follows is a very brief overview of some of the discoveries. The full reports can be read here: (

Rally 69 – Mud, Mist, Cold and Gold
The first rally of the year took us on a freezing and foggy Sunday into deepest, darkest Sodbury. The finds turned up a plenty though with Alan finding a Charles 1st Half Crown and medieval seal matrix. Dom starting the gold finds for the year with a 1914 half sovereign and Antique Boy going one better with a gold coin of James 1st. A great start to the year.

Rally 70 – A wizard time in Hawksbridge
TaffLaff broke with tradition at this rally by finding both a 1816 bullhead sixpence and a Lizzy hammered sixpence. Find of the day though fell deservedly to Mrs Wizard and her 22ct Tudor posy ring inscribed “Gods Providence is our Inheritance”.

Rally 71 – The Baby Jobe Rally
With most of the UK under water and rallies cancelled all over the place, Taff managed to pull some dry land out of his hat. The farmer and his family joined us for a days detecting with numerous finds surfacing from Roman fibula brooches to medieval hammered coinage. Along we also raised £484 for a charity close to the farmer’s heart.

Rally 72 – Fossils, Vessicas and Streakers
A bewildering time cross section at this farm, with a Roman hotspot literally yards from the farm house. We were also treated to numerous cretaceous period fossils that were lying all over the place waiting to be picked up. JCB had his first ever find in the shape of a silver thimble. John Talbot had a brace of Roman fibulas. Mr Mayo uncovered a denarius of Septum’s Severus and Sandy from Plymouth had the find of the day in a circa 1300’s Bronze Vesical Seal. Oh, and in case we forgot Rambo could be seen detecting half naked . . . not a pleasant sight for anyone!

Rally 73 – All Hail Emperor Dawson
In March we returned to Shepton Mallet and were rewarded with hail from the Gods on at least five times throughout the day. DB4 unearthed a cracker of a silver Victorian buckle ring, but the find of the day belonged to Dawson with a pin intact 2nd Century Roman fibula.

Rally 74 – Matrix 3
Like a scene from the Whacky Races, numerous rally goers got lost at the start of the day. It happens occasionally but eventually everyone got to the fields. The rewards for the day included Nobby with a seal matrix (one of three found), Landyman with a silver groat of Queen Mary and Antiqueboy with a heraldic pendent.

Rally 75 – When in Rome
A Roman day for Dances With Badgers finding 5 Roman coins, Da Monkey with a enamelled Roman Umbonate disc brooch, Wayno with a denari and Deeper Sweeper with a rare Roman Tutulus brooch. He also pulled out a bronze medieval shield baring the image of three rampant lions.

Rally 76 – Heat & Hard Going
A scorcher on Templar land in Garway with a silver shilling of Charles 1st being found by Maggot. Another find of note was a Republican Denarii of Mark Anthony minted for the sixth legion during the Roman civil war – well done Cable on discovering it.

Rally 77 – Its Raining Finds!
Our fifth return to Gileston where the day started wet but ended in blazing sunshine. Stand out finds included a counter stamped George IV half-crown for Mrs Wizard and a Vicky half sovereign for Jon Talbot. He also added a beautiful flint arrow head to his finds for the day.

Rally 78 – The Fake and the Real Silver
Back to the glorious VoG and we started off helping a nearby farmer find his lost block. Finds reigned in all day including an unusual Henry VIII groat discovered by Kernel Custer that cruelly turned out to be a WRL reproduction. Melonhead found a decent short cross penny and Willowtree a US Air Force officers silver badge. A lovely day out in the sun.

Rally 79 – Carry on Rallying.
Started off with a sign falling over and sending arrivals to the wrong end of the farm. The one field was known as ‘Bomber Field’ and we could see why with the numerous bits of Mills grenade parts found in it left over from training in World War I. Milled silver was also the theme of the day, as was sunburn for those who forgot their sun cream!

Rally 80 – Day One - For Your Eyes Only
The first day witnessed camping, breakfasts, detecting, boozing, cabaret and token hunting until the early hours. This enormous farm was barely touched by us and needs a return visit or ten! Chef used his eyes and found a flint arrow head. I did the same a few feet away and spotted a heavily polished early bead (waiting confirmation but likely to be Iron Age or earlier). Mike unearthed another Vicky half crown and most people had heavy pockets.

Rally 81 – Day Two - The Man with the Bronze Age Axe
Day two we had more land and that totalled 3.12 square miles – unbelievable! Parki John uncovered part of a potentially Bronze Age spear head, Dylan had a forged Charles II half crown, and we all sported hang overs! Another raffle was held with the start prize of a Minelab probe being won by young Nobby. Over the weekend we managed to raise £1,178 for the farmers chosen charity.

Rally 82 – I’m not Bulling it was a search for Dry Land
With views of the Quantocks this breath taking location led to Dryland finding a medieval lead vessica seal and a 22ct gold ring. Kikin had the majority of a silver gilt iconographic ring. The find of the day and arguably the year fell to Mike with DW’s first ever Papal Bulla of Alexander II 1061-1073. The rest of it is in that field somewhere!

Rally 83 – The Slip Sliding Away Rally
A muddy location that took a while to get the cars and detectorists out at the end of the day. Finds of note included Taff Laff with a James 1st penny, Tezza with a Tudor hair pin and a mysterious face that transpired to be a chaffing dish handle. Find of the day though fell at Melonheads feet in the form of a Anglo Saxon lozengiform brooch 700-900AD

Rally 84 – The Santas Awaken!
The final rally of the year and the institution that is the Santa Hats rally led to us detecting in the idyllic setting of a field next to a church. It produced a stunning ring with gilded eagle for Radnor Bandit, a William III shilling and a pilgrim’s ampulla.

Our ongoing success wouldn’t be possible without the continued loyal support and input from you the members. You make Detecting Wales the success story that it has become and it speaks volumes that you continue to log in daily. We pride ourselves on only ever holding rallies in locations we want to detect and having the sort of website that we as detectorists want to visit.

Wales’ premier metal detecting forum is ready to move into year seven, with plans already underway for the two dayer and numerous rallies lined up for the coming year.

May you all have a great Christmas, and a healthy new year full of the finds you have always dreamed of.

Keep the Faith


Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Neil on December 22, 2014, 03:36:42 PM
More images

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: GJH on December 22, 2014, 04:11:34 PM
Thanks for the write up of the last year Neil  and thanks to all for organising the rallies, and I would like to say Merry Christmas and a Happy New year to one and all. roll on next year.

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Mike on December 22, 2014, 04:28:12 PM
great review mate , enjoyed every rally I attended this year and was lucky enough to make a few good finds along the way along with many other members .

thanks to all the organisers for putting the rallies on for us and of course the landowners without who we would never detect .

good luck everyone for next year

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: gijan on December 22, 2014, 05:05:28 PM
pleasure 2b a part  of dw over the years ...many fab garrett finds 4me....lots of laughs x chats along the way.   we made great friends .... ::)..may all your finds be plenty peeps..happy digging 2 one and all...looking 4ward 2 the nxt dig.... :-* :-*jan x

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: bowman on December 22, 2014, 05:08:52 PM
Many thanks DW team  for a great  year  & all the well organised rallies provided . Merry Xmas and a happy New Year  :)

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Val Beechey on December 22, 2014, 05:23:04 PM
Gosh Neil that must have taken you ages to write.  Some happy people and memories there (including John with a smile on his face) ::)

Many thanks to you (what would we do without you)  and all the other organisers for so much effort over the year/s.

Our very best wishes to you all  ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D

Val and John.

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: DEADLOCK on December 22, 2014, 05:56:37 PM
What a  fantastic  write up Neil. I'm sure every one appreciates your fantastic rally write ups and all all that you do for Detecting Wales.  To pinch a phrase of
 keep the faith


Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: 150aceboy on December 22, 2014, 06:17:08 PM
Great write up Neil  ;)

Thanks to yourself and all moderators and members, for your help, knowlege, and friendliness, in such a great and rewarding hobby.

Makes one proud to be part of Detecting Wales.

I'd like to wish everyone a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year with plenty of nice finds   ;)

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Dale on December 22, 2014, 06:28:17 PM
A great review Neil well done mate ;)

All the best everyone for 2015...... ;)

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: handyman [Alan} on December 22, 2014, 06:35:24 PM
I did enjoy that read. Well done Neil and well done everyone on making DW such a fantastic forum. A huge thanks must go to  Proconsul, Neil, Taff, Cheffy for all their work behind the scenes. Similarly thanks to all the rally helpers, car park pushers and moderators. Special mention to the Doc, Probono and Dale and anyone else who helped ID the roman and hammered coinage

A particular mention must go to  Dryland for being such a good sport despite his many name changes in 2014!

Next year i promise to attend more DW rallies, and to visit sunny Swansea a lot more often! plus of course a visit to wayno's eatery being on the cards!

May 2015 bring much success to all DW members ........ [but not for the other 11 months of the year lol!!!]

Seasons greetings to you all

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: hotmill on December 22, 2014, 06:41:30 PM
Another great write up! Great site, good people, Happy Christmas one and all

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Resurgam on December 22, 2014, 07:01:20 PM
Many thanks for a superb site.  :)

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Doug on December 22, 2014, 07:08:16 PM
Thank you Neil for the end of term report...... :)

Being a relativity newcomer to DW I also would like to say thank you to all the behind the scenes staff and and all the members of DW that make us what we are.

...and a wish for 2015 that all Rip-van-Drylanders finds be Roman..........or is that just wishful thinking?


Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: whosyouruncle on December 22, 2014, 07:32:22 PM
Superb write up Neil,
And  thanks to all at D.W.for myself and Beanz start to organised digs.
we wish one and all a Merry Christmas and  A very Happy and prosperous 2015.
low and slow,dig dig dig . :) :) :)

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: TEZZA on December 22, 2014, 09:43:53 PM
Thanks to all who have organized the rallies i`ve enjoyed every one Also all the the members that ive met A very merry Christmas to you all and a successful new year HAPPY DETECTING AND GOOD LUCK

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: jcb (THE THIMBLE) jones on December 22, 2014, 10:21:10 PM
superb write up neil ,i have had an amazing first year with DW meet a lot of people on the way who have  made me feel more than welcome ,made some great friends over the year and hope to make a lot more in 2015 ,i would say my finds identification needs to improve lol ,
here's hoping 2015 will be a good year for us all ,BIG THANK YOU  to all DW staff for putting on such great rallys ,
would also like to thank handyman alan for taking me under his wing in the first couple of rallys really helped me a lot
taff , neil , and my old mucca nobby for sharing the transport and enjoying a laugh to and from rallys
and last but certainly not least my grumpy old mate from over the waters bah humbug, chef geoff has put up with me asking all sort of questions about all things detecting ,helped me out all year ,invited me down to somerset several times ,thanks cheffy i really appreciate it mate ,hope you will still look after me in 2015

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Jeff The Wizard on December 22, 2014, 10:28:50 PM
Neil, I think you deserve a well earned holiday after compiling and presenting that comprehensive year in the life of Detecting Wales  :D
Mrs Wizard and I would like to thank all you guys within D W Management for organising and hosting Rallies on such interesting and productive sites .
Lets hope 2015 is going to be the big one  :o

Merry Xmas to  you all,
Jeff and Des   ;)    

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: celticspikey on December 22, 2014, 11:04:50 PM
Super write up Neil as usual, thanks to all the guys who keep D/W up and running and for all the work they put on securing rally permissions, and of course Geoff for researching and getting our taste buds going on the day of the rallies. If there's one thing I would change it would be that I am more successfull on rallies  ;D ;D ;D but I wouldn't change the warm welcome,banter, and knowledge you get from the guys and girls on these D/W rallies. Merry Christmas to you all and a prosperous and healthy New Year........Oh and some nice finds ;) ;) ;)

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Old Pete on December 22, 2014, 11:43:37 PM
I have only been a member for about 3 months but I would like to say a BIG thank you to all those who run the DW forum and organise the rallies. Also to those who have helped me so much by answering my beginners questions. It's great to find people who are so helpful, friendly and welcoming both on here and at the rallies.
Wishing A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year full of great finds to you all.

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Dryland on December 23, 2014, 01:09:17 AM
Many thanks Neil for a great write up and for bringing back so many happy memories from this year. As has already been said, a big
thank you has to go to everybody who run  this forum and work so tirelessly to organise the rallies.
                                               Detecting Wales has to be one of the best forums on the internet, with friendships being made online
even before people actually meet in the flesh. As I have said before the camaraderie at the rallies between everybody is what makes the day, with people being so helpful and encouraging [ I can honestly say that I have never heared a word spoken in anger, people must have been whispering behind my back ;D ;D ] and the finds being a bonus. Personally I've had a few of my better finds this year with the gold ring turning out to be early medieval.
                                                      This year thanks to Taff I've been suffering with M N D [multiple name disorder ] so goodness knows who I'll be in 2015. But whoever I am I'd like to wish you and yours a Very Happy Christmas and a brilliant New Year,

                                                                             Dryland  [ Dylan ]

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: jamiepearce on December 23, 2014, 08:43:02 AM
Many many thanks to great bunch!
All the best to you all!
Long may all the fun continue
 :) ;) :D ;D :o 8) ::) :-X :-*

Title: Re: Year six in the life of - 2014
Post by: Neil on December 27, 2014, 05:57:21 PM
Thanks chaps for all the comments - Glad you have enjoyed the past year.

As the recent hoard has shown, it's all still out there waiting to be discovered, hopefully we shall do it together.

Happy Christmas and a Treasured filled New Year to one and all!


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