More Staffordshire Hoard treasure may still be buried

Artefacts found at the Staffordshire Hoard site could lead to further discoveries of Anglo Saxon treasure in the area, according to experts.

A total of 91 new items were discovered at the site near Lichfield last November – 81 of which have been deemed treasure and part of the same world famous hoard by Coroner Andrew Haigh.

During a treasure inquest, county archaeologist Stephen Dean and national adviser on medieval metal for the British Museum, Dr Kevin Leahy, gave evidence.

Dr Leahy, who is also finder and part-owner of the hoard, said that some of the items that were not deemed to be part of the original hoard were still from the Anglo Saxon period, two of them being made from copper.

He said: “The findings are beginning to suggest there was a sequence of events.

“The copper alloy items are quality items, although they’re only made from base materials.

“They can’t be associated with the same hoard, however, as they are different in nature and made from copper, not gold or silver.

“These are very important findings, as they suggest there was more than one event on this site. Anglo Saxons clearly visited the site more than once to bury items.”

The treasure was discovered in Hammerwich, near the Burntwood and Brownhills border. Archaeologist Mr Dean said the possibility of further Anglo Saxon activity was now to be investigated in greater detail.

“I think with regards to these copper objects, we need to do more work,” he said. “Whether they’re part of another site or not, I don’t know. It’s difficult to determine the nature of this other activity.”

Mr Dean believes both sets of items could have been buried because of fears over them being taken or damaged during some sort of conflict or threat.

County council leader Philip Atkins said the findings were great news for the whole of the West Midlands.

The artefacts are now at the British Museum and are due to be valued by the end of March.