High Weald hoard of Roman coins on display in Sussex

Image caption,
The High Weald hoard was found in clay soil 30 miles north of Brighton

Nearly 3,000 silver Roman coins found four years ago by a metal detector enthusiast in Sussex are to go on display in the county.

The High Weald hoard, discovered by Tim Symonds about 30 miles north of Brighton, has been bought by Brighton's Royal Pavilion and Museums.

The coins, worth about £40,000, were bought with help from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

They will go on display at Brighton Museum this summer and tour next year.

"I am really delighted," said Mr Symonds, from Burwash, East Sussex.

"It is such a large haul and so historic, it seemed entirely likely that the British Museum would want it or that it could possibly have moved to American."

The hoard was catalogued by the British Museum and recognised as an important find for the region by the government's Treasure Valuation Committee.

The cash value will be divided between Mr Symonds and the landowner, who wants to remain anonymous.

The hoard, which dates from the third century, is one of the largest collections of Roman coins ever found in Sussex.

Mr Symonds said the day he found them was "like a dream".

"It was nearly dark. It was winter, it was cold and raining," he said.

"These things came out of the ground stuck together with clay, first two coins stuck together then in bunches of 80 and 100 and then a pot with the final 1,000.

"I stuffed every pocket and staggered back to my car. It was a wonderful day."

The collection will go on tour across Sussex in 2013, visiting museums in Hastings, Bexhill, Battle and Eastbourne and Fishbourne Roman Villa.

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