Metal detection is a useful survey technique that can provide dating and evidence of former land-use. Archaeological Surveys carry out metal detector surveys to specific project designs that meet the aims and objectives of the client. We have carried out a number of surveys on English Civil War battlefield sites as well as battlefields in Ireland and Belgium.
Consistency and experience are major factors when carrying out metal detector surveys. In addition, accurate surveying is essential for a proper analysis of finds and this is achieved through referencing using RTK GNSS. Generally ferrous and/or non-ferrous items are collected from the topsoil in order to gain maximum information from a site.
Unfortunately we no longer offer detailed finds analysis and conservation so the majority of work is undertaken in conjunction with archaeological units.
Recent research survey on a Roman site in Wiltshire confirmed the correlation between magnetic debris located by high resolution magnetometry and small Roman roof tile nails. Identifying these ferrous objects was valuable in understanding the location of former Roman structures completely destroyed by years of ploughing. The detection of ferrous objects is something that is often ignored but in fact may hold more archaeological potential than the location of small non-ferrous finds.