Category Archives: Treasure

Latest Art Antiquity & Law issue

Posted on: May 21, 2019 by Julia Rodrigues Casella Hommes

The brand new issue of IAL’s Art Antiquity & Law quarterly journal is hot off the press and is now available in print and online via the Hein portal. This year’s first issue brings an array of articles, conference reports and a book review. Maja Dehouck discusses the regulation of illicit trafficking of cultural property […]

A spate of coins – the recent discovery of the Hambleden Hoard

Posted on: May 3, 2019 by Rebecca Reynolds

It is fitting that, following Geoffrey Bennett’s last post on the Treasure Act consultations in the UK, this piece would also touch on a topic close to our hearts: the law of treasure. For four men in England last month the dream of finding treasure became a reality. While partaking in a four day long […]

Revising the definition of ‘treasure’

Posted on: May 1, 2019 by Geoffrey Bennett

Assiduous followers of the media, and possibly even those with no interest at all, may have noticed that Her Majesty’s Government has in recent months been slightly preoccupied with European legal perspectives. It therefore came as a welcome surprise that in February 2019 the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DDCMS) announced a long-awaited […]

Cadbury’s Freddo Treasures campaign backfires

Posted on: March 27, 2019 by Rebecca Reynolds

Searching for treasure and discovering new archaeological sites like Indiana Jones is every child’s dream. And this is exactly what Cadbury’s latest Freddo campaign sought to do. The relevant webpage listed a series of known archaeological sites in England, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland where “treasure is fair game”, and encouraged children to […]

Monetising the past – some thoughts on the sale of archaeological artefacts

Posted on: March 4, 2019 by Rebecca Reynolds

Laws and guidance notes are rarely retrospective as this would go against fairness and justice. As regards laws such as the Treasure Act 1996 and guidance notes dealing with human remains and archaeological excavation, however, many archaeologists, Anglo-Saxon specialists and museum curators probably wish that they could be. Hansons Auctioneers recently announced it would be […]

Consultation opens to amend Treasure Act 1996

Posted on: February 13, 2019 by Rebecca Reynolds

1 February saw the announcement by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) that a consultation has opened on a series of proposed amendments to the Treasure Act 1996 and its associated Code of Practice. The consultation period will last until 30 April 2019 and will be seeking views on a series of […]

An archaeological find in a footballer’s cellar

Posted on: July 10, 2018 by Lucie Lambrecht and Zacharias Mawick

In 2017, according to an article appearing in The Mirror, Tottenham Hotspur footballer and Belgian World Cup team member, Mousa Dembélé, discovered archaeological objects of significant financial and archaeological value in the cellar of a historic building in the Flemish city of Antwerp. The footballer bought the 700-year-old listed building to open a luxury hotel, […]

UNESCO weighs in over potential billion-dollar shipwrecked treasure

Posted on: May 5, 2018 by Paul Stevenson

Last Friday, the UN cultural agency UNESCO called on Colombia not to exploit commercially the three centuries’ old wreck of the Spanish galleon, San Jose, hailed by some as “the holy grail of shipwrecks”. Reports suggest that the San Jose contains a cargo worth billions of dollars. Colombian authorities reportedly intend to recover the San […]

Commentary on prosecution of UK man for antiquities smuggling

Posted on: August 30, 2017 by IAL Admin

A UK man, Toby Robyns, was apprehended ten days ago by Turkish authorities, as he tried to leave Turkey with a dozen coins. He had found the coins with his children on the seabed while snorkelling. He is still in prison, awaiting a decision by the Turkish courts. Our Assistant Director, Alexander Herman, was interviewed […]

Hoard of gold coins found in old piano

Posted on: May 9, 2017 by Geoffrey Bennett

On the year marking the 20th anniversary of the modernisation of treasure law in England, a case has come to light serving as a throwback to the earlier law of ‘treasure trove’. The Treasure Act 1996, implemented in 1997, marked a significant advance on the previous law. The definition of ‘treasure’ under the Act is […]