Celebrity guest Ted Robbins (that's Dem Perry from Phoenix Nights & BBC Radio Lancashire for those not in the know) gets into the historic spirit. Courtesy Museum of Lancashire.
24 Hour Museum Renaissance Student Journalist Jade Wright unearthed some treasures in Preston.
Saturday April 30 2005 was Fabulous Finds Day at the Museum of Lancashire in Preston. Finders of all ages took their treasures to be examined by experts and specialists in everything from archaeology to popular culture were on hand.
Over 140 finders braved the rain to bring in their treasures for identification with objects ranging from Roman clay pipes to a 1970s Teasmaid.
The find of the day was a large haul of over 30 treasures, unearthed by Peter Hayes from Preston. "I’ve been metal detecting for some years, and these are just some of the things I’ve found," said Mr Hayes.
Peter Hayes from Preston brought in a vast collection of artefacts. Courtesy Museum of Lancashire.
"I’m not really interested in the usual things like coins; my favourites are the personal objects, like jewellery. You can look at it and imagine someone choosing it, deciding on the design, all that time ago," he added.
"The best thing for me about finding an object is thinking that I might be the first person to touch it for centuries. In a way that last human hand that touched it passed it through time to me. You really can’t beat that feeling."
Mr Hayes showed his collection to Dot Bruns, Portable Antiquities Scheme finds liaison officer for Lancashire and Cumbria, and agreed to bring it all back to be catalogued onto the Finds Database at the museum.
"This is a wonderful collection, and we are very lucky that Mr Hayes has brought it in to show us," said Dot.
Dot Bruns discusses the Fabulous Finds of the day with Granada TV's Fred Talbot. Courtesy Museum of Lancashire.
"I am an archaeologist myself and I know how precious objects you find yourself can be, but it is really good that people are bringing things in so we can get a better idea of the history of the area."
Not all of the objects were quite so old. Following the recent 20th Century Roadshow on BBC1, lots of people brought in great examples of popular culture.
Gordon Rowe and his son Anthony, from Preston, brought in a white floral teapot with an unusual metal spout. The Fabulous Finds team identified it as a 1920s design, patented by GM Creyke & sons in Staffordshire and billed as the world’s first non-drip teapot.
Mr Rowe said: "I had no idea what it was, but I’d always thought it looked interesting because of the metal spout. Now we know it’s an antique, we’ll be much more careful with it."
A Fabulous Finding team: father and son Gordon and Anthony Rowe. Gordon's last visit to the museum was when it was a car taxation office at least 15 years ago! Courtesy Museum of Lancashire.
For children under 16, there was also a separate Finder of the Year competition, awarded to the finder with the best story, not just the most unusual treasure.
William Watson, 14, entered the competition after he found an unusual metal key-shaped object in his garden and brought it to show the team.
Stephen Bull, the Curator of Military History and Archaeology at the museum, identified it as an early 20th century iron peg, which would be inserted into a wall and used to hang small objects on.
William Watson, 14, with his mystery find... Courtesy Museum of Lancashire.
William said: “When I first saw it I thought it might be a key. My family have been wondering what it was for a while, so I brought it today. It’s good to finally find out what it was used for.”
The day was organised by the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council as part of Museums and Galleries Month, which runs from May 1 to 31 2005. There will also be a number of other MGM 2005 activities in the North west region - check the event listings search box on the homepage of this site.
Jade Wright is the 24 Hour Museum Renaissance Student Writer in the North West region. Renaissance is the groundbreaking initiative to transform England's regional museums, led by MLA, the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council.