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Enthusiast unearths Iron Age comb

22 November 07 17:00 GMT

A 2,000-year-old Iron Age comb unearthed in Warwickshire is one of nearly 60,000 archaeological finds made by members of the public in a year.

The comb, found in Tanworth-in-Arden by metal detector enthusiast Russell Peach, was one of the most notable of the antiquities unearthed in 2006.

The copper-alloy comb was possibly left there between 25AD and 75AD.

Three-quarters of the finds were unearthed using metal detectors; the rest were found by accident.

Details of the discoveries were contained in the Portable Antiquities Scheme Annual Report, launched on Thursday at the British Museum.

'Living thing'

Other notable finds include a copper-alloy Roman horse and rider figure, which was found in Cambridgeshire.

A total of 58,290 finds were recorded by the project during the year 2006/2007, taking the number of finds recorded over the past decade to more than 300,000.

Culture Secretary Margaret Hodge said: "This report brings home to us once again the extent and richness of our 'hidden heritage'.

"As public interest in it continues unabated, I am pleased to acknowledge the many thousands of responsible metal detectorists and amateur archaeologists who continue to help make the past a living thing for present and future generations."

Under the Treasure Act 1996, people who find gold and silver objects more than 300 years old have a legal obligation to report them to the authorities.

Because the comb is made of copper-alloy and not gold or silver it does not qualify as a treasure find.

Important archaeological sites have been discovered as a result of the objects recorded, including Anglo-Saxon burial sites in Derbyshire, Suffolk and Warwickshire.

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