Race is on to raise funds to keep treasure found in Winfarthing in the county
Nationally significant treasure more than 1,300 years old is now at the centre of a fundraising appeal to keep the find in the county.
Historians are seeking to buy Anglo-Saxon grave assemblage unearthed in Winfarthing – valued by the government’s independent Treasure Valuation Committee at £145,050.
It was discovered by UEA student Tom Lucking, while he was using a metal detector in December 2014. It was excavated a few weeks later, with support from members of Norfolk County Council’s Find Identification and Recording Service.
The fundraisers aim to have the treasure on display at Norwich Castle.
The castle now has three months to raise the money to keep the finds, which include the significant large gold and garnet pendant, in the county. The money will be split equally between the finder and the landowner.
The fundraising push is being led by the Friends of Norwich Museums.
We hope the public feel as strongly as we do that this treasure should remain in Norfolk and help by making a financial donation so that this can happen
Chair of the Friends, Francesca Makins, said: “We are delighted to assist Norwich Castle in the fundraising appeal for this wonderful and precious treasure.
“Found in Norfolk, this delicate jewel is a reminder of the wealth and sophistication of the East Anglian kingdom and deserves to stay in the county of its discovery. We encourage anyone able to assist us in saving this spectacular artefact for Norwich Castle.”
The grave proved to be the burial of a high-status lady buried between about AD 650-675. First discovered through the detection of a bronze bowl buried at the lady’s feet, other grave-goods included a broke pottery jar, a knife, a belt hanger of bronze rings, and a necklace, and a large pendant worn lower down on the woman’s chest.
Councillor John Ward, chairman of Norfolk’s joint museums committee, said: “This is a significant find. We hope the public feel as strongly as we do that this treasure should remain in Norfolk and help by making a financial donation so that this can happen.
“In time, it would be great that this jewellery would be displayed in the county so Norwich Castle visitors can enjoy seeing it and finding out more. ”
To donate to the fundraising appeal, go to www.friendsofthenorwichmuseums.co.uk or write to FNM Treasurer Janet Duncan, Shirehall, Market Avenue, Norwich, NR1 3JQ.