A VIKING hoard of pieces crafted from gold and silver has been discovered in North Yorkshire which experts say is a “significant and nationally important discovery.”
A gold sword pommel, a unique silver neck ring and a silver armlet are part of the trove discovered in Bedale, North Yorkshire.
A total of 29 silver ingots, four other silver neck rings, gold rivets and half a silver brooch were also found in the hoard which is believed to date from the late ninth or early tenth century.
Metal detectorist, Stuart Campbell, discovered part of the hoard and informed archaeologists who uncovered the rest.
The Yorkshire Museum, York, will now try and raise the funds to purchase the collection to try to keep it in the county on public display.
Andrew Morrison, head curator at the Yorkshire Museum, said: “This is a significant and nationally important find which we hope will shed new light on Yorkshire at that time.
“The artefacts uncovered are typical of a Viking Hoard, with the majority of it being silver ingots which were used for currency. However the gold sword pommel and a unique silver neck ring are incredibly beautiful and rare finds.
“We now hope to be able to raise the funds needed to keep them in Yorkshire.”
The artefacts are currently at the British Museum, London, and will remain there at least until they are officially declared treasure and valued. The hoard has yet to go to inquest to be officially declared treasure, so the exact funds needed are not yet known.
The discovery of the hoard was made in May last year on land in Bedale, at a location that the landowner wishes to keep secret.
Since the discovery work has been going on to determine its significance.
No coins were present in the hoard to date it, however by studying the contents and comparing it with other hoards, archaeologists believe it is from the late ninth or early tenth century.
The large pommel found is believed to be from an Anglo-Saxon sword, while the unique neck ring is made up of four ropes of twisted silver strands joined together at each end.
A broad, flat arm-ring is of Hiberno-Scandinavian type, made by the Vikings in Ireland. This is decorated with a pattern of stamp impressed grooves.