Sunday, 10 October 2010

More quilt progress

Well this was supposed to be an update plus photo of the current quilt, but I cannot get Google Blogger to upload the photo without turning it 90degrees... Its so frustrating, anyway, I have told them about it so I hope they have a solution. Meanwhile, I can say that the quilt is looking better than I expected to be honest. In fact I am beginning to feel I might be onto something new and exciting.....But I do not want to show you it sideways so have had to leave the photo out.

Instead of my effort what about something truly magnificent.

Meanwhile I want to comment on the latest debacle that Cumbria has suffered this month, as if poor Cumbria has not had its fair share of troubles since the terrible floods last November and just when our little county seemed to have found a treasure, it was lost to us. I refer to the wonderful Roman Cavalry Parade Helmet which was found in May in a Cumbrian field at Crosby Garret by a metal detector enthusiast. It was given some very careful repairs and then promptly despatched to London for sale at Christies. Our local Carlisle Museum immediately launched an appeal to save this exquisite helmet from leaving the county where it had laid buried in a Cumbrian field for nearly 2000 years. The reason they wanted it is obvious, take a very careful look, it is beautiful. Stunning workmanship, of the highest order.

Now I used to belong to an archaeological society when I was a teenager. The Lower Medway Archealogical Research Group or LMARG for short was the group I joined and what fun we had scraping the sides of Roman trenches with our 5 inch mason's pointing trowels, but we did not have sophisticated gear like they do now. (We never found more than a few pot sherds but we were operating in the late 60's.)

Fast forward a few years and metal detectors are here to stay and that's fine so long as the use of them is subject to sensible precautions in order to save important objects from being sold to Mr or Ms 'anonymous' for purely financial reasons. Nationally important archaelogical finds by metal detector wielding folks should not be sold at auction without first going through a vetting procedure. I know the law does allow for gold and silver objects to be declared 'treasure trove' and so protected from sale to anonymous buyers but it must be extended to include all metal objects which are significant. Christies London auction house should never be the place where these items end up because this just panders to the cult of the rich can buy what they like approach. Our cultural heritage is swept away into private collections whose owners remain anonymous and we sit at home fuming.  ok Rant over..... but Cumbria needed this helmet, it was a jewel, and I would have given £50 to go and see it at Tullie House Museum in Carlisle.

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