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Viewing area planned at Staffordshire Hoard discovery site

Staffordshire | News | Published:

A viewing area overlooking the site where the Staffordshire Hoard was discovered may be created to cater for an influx of tourists following its poular exhibition in the US.

A viewing area overlooking the site where the Staffordshire Hoard was discovered may be created to cater for an influx of tourists following its poular exhibition in the US.

Campaigners hope to attract sponsorship for a granite post with a peep hole to be installed on a plot of land next to where the pieces of gold were discovered two years ago.

Visitors would be able to peer through it and then train their eyes on the exact spot. The idea is the brainchild of Walsall pensioner Brian Stringer and it has won the backing of councillors.

Metal detecting enthusiast Terry Herbert, aged 57, of Burntwood, literally struck gold in 2009 when he found the hoard at Johnson's Farm on the Lichfield-Brownhills border.

It is hoped the proposed viewing site on vacant land in Lichfield Road could be a facility for tourists.

If the scheme got the go-ahead information display boards would be installed and a small car park created.

Mr Stringer, aged 72, of Park Close, Brownhills, said: "It was just an idea which I'm hoping will spark some interest. It's also a way of keeping visitors off the field.

"It would need quite a bit of funding to get it off the ground either from the local councils or a private benefactor.

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"I just think the site should be preserved or else in a few years' time folk will forget where it actually was. The collection has generated international interest, but not enough is being done to recognise the local link.

"Just think of the revenue which this area could gain from tourism if we get our act together. It won't be long before some enterprising travel company starts offering visits to the site as part of a tour."

Almost 4,000 Americans flocked to see the hoard in the first nine days of it going on display at the National Geographic Museum in Washington DC earlier this month.

Brownhills representative Councillor Dave Turner said: "It would be good if some signs were put up at the site. It is just over the Walsall border, and lies very close to Brownhills which is sometimes forgotten."

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