Wickham Market: Exhibition stirs up metal detector’s memories of Viking find

Andy Humphrey, of Wickham Market, found a rare silver Viking pendant with his metal detector that is going on display at the British Museum. Andy Humphrey, of Wickham Market, found a rare silver Viking pendant with his metal detector that is going on display at the British Museum.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014
10:10 AM

A Suffolk treasure hunter has recalled unearthing the “discovery of a lifetime”, after learning that his amazing find was going on display at the British Museum.

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The rare early Viking pendant found in Wickham MarketThe rare early Viking pendant found in Wickham Market

Seeing news of the silver Viking pendant being exhibited in London brought back exciting memories for Andy Humphrey, who uncovered the item more than a decade ago in Wickham Market.

The 47-year-old, who runs a small cleaning business and has been metal detecting for about 20 years, remembers the moment in 2002 vividly. He said: “I’d been given permission by a local farmer to search a small field. I had already found pottery and assumed there must have been some kind of settlement there in the past.

“I’d been out for three or four hours one Sunday when this came up. It the third item I came across that day and I thought it was medieval at first, but I always get stuff identified to make sure.

“After going through the proper channels I was offered a reward, which I halved with the farmer.”

The Colchester and Ipswich Museum Service has loaned the pendant to the British Museum for its Vikings: Life and Legend exhibition, which continues until June 22.

Mr Humphrey said: “It’s really nice for people to be able to see it. I think it’s great.

“I still go out with the detector most weekends. I’ve found the odd Roman coin but never anything as significant as this. It’s a once in a lifetime find.”

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