Metal detector man discovers Iron Age treasures
A treasure hunter has uncovered priceless jewellery dating back to the Iron age at a South Wales farm.
Brian Gibbison, 43, found the prehistoric bronze collar and bracelet with his metal detector at a farm in the Vale of Glamorgan - just a year after starting his metal- seeking hobby.
He has now handed his precious find over to the National Museum of Wales after a Cardiff inquest heard it had proved officially to be treasure.
The French polisher, from Barry, said: 'This is my best find ever. It was really exciting.
'This is why I spend so much of my time looking for these sorts of things at weekends.'
An inquest has to be held when objects are found that are valuable and when any owners cannot be traced.
Under the coroner's rules, an item which is proved to be more than 300 years old and containing a substantial amount of precious metal is declared to be national treasure and handed to the Crown.
Once designated treasure, the item is usually given to a museum for safe keeping and the finder will receive a reward. Mr Gibbison said: 'It is impossible to put a price on it because it is so old. That is up to the museum now.'
The collar, decorated with an enamel design, is a neck ornament normally found in western Britain and dating to around 50AD, shortly before the Roman conquest of South Wales.
The matching bracelets found with the collar are from the same era.
National Museum of Wales curator Adam Gwilt said: 'This is a set of high prestige ornaments, and is a significant discovery for the Iron Age of Wales.
'It helps us understand the styles and identity of the tribes who lived through this time of cultural conflict with the Romans.'
Other hauls in the inquest, held yesterday, included 19 bronze artefacts dating from 950BC, which included sword fragments, socketed axes, a winged axe, a 16th- Century silver gilt pinhead and a silver Medieval brooch from the 13th Century, which were all found at farms across the Vale of Glamorgan using metal detectors.
A National Museum spokeswoman confirmed they would take ownership of all of the items and keep them at Cathays Park, Cardiff.