Major collection of Viking silver found at Silverdale goes on public display (From The Westmorland Gazette)
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Major collection of Viking silver found at Silverdale goes on public display
A major collection of Viking silver - buried for over 1,000 years - is to go on display at Lancaster City Museum.
Known as the 'Silverdale Hoard', the collection is made up of more than 200 items believed to date from around 900 AD.
The pieces include beautifully-crafted jewellery together with coins from several Viking kingdoms of Britain, from Europe and even Arabia.
Also included are 141 fragments of arm-rings and ingots which had been chopped into smaller pieces.
These are known as hacksilver, which the Vikings used as money.
The hoard had been buried in a lead pouch under a field in Silverdale, where it was discovered by a local metal detectorist in September 2011.
The following December it was declared Treasure in line with the Treasure Act 1996. It was later valued at nearly £110,000.
Following the valuation, staff from Lancashire County Council's museum service, supported by colleagues at Lancaster City Council, made successful bids for funds from national arts and heritage organisations to buy the hoard and make sure it stays in the county.
The hoard has been acquired by the county council's museums service thanks to a grant of £45,000 from the National Heritage Memorial Fund, along with £33,000 from the Art Fund and £18,000 from the Victoria and Albert Purchase Grant Fund.
Lancashire County Councillor, Marcus Johnstone, cabinet member for environment, planning and cultural services, said: "This superb exhibition in Lancaster will be the first chance for everyone to see one of the largest collections of Viking silver ever found in Britain.
"I should like to thank our museum staff, together with our colleagues at the city council, for their hard work and their commitment to keeping this historically important collection here in Lancashire.
Coun Ron Sands, Lancaster City Council's cabinet member with responsibility for leisure, culture and tourism, added: “The Silverdale Hoard is a unique reminder of our rich heritage. It gives us a fascinating glimpse into the history of the district.
“I’m delighted that this exhibition is taking place at Lancaster City Museum. I would urge everyone to take up this fabulous opportunity to visit this wonderful local find while it is available to view right here on our doorstep."
The exhibition runs from Friday October 25 until Saturday December 21.
After previewing in Lancaster, the hoard will move to its permanent home at the Museum of Lancashire in Preston.
Lancaster City Museum is managed by Lancashire County Council on behalf of the city council. Opening times are 10am to 5pm, Monday to Saturday. Admission is free.
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