How a metal detector and Google Earth are helping one man uncover the past


Hi, I’m Peter Welch and I use Google Earth to find where ancient artifacts are buried. Most people, when they start detecting, you find a nail. You find a beer can. Average stuff. And then you find your first coin and that’s where the interest starts to grab you. I thought, “There’s something in this, organizing digs for people.” So I formed the Weekend Wanderers. We quickly grew to be the largest metal detecting club in the country. It’s not just about finding things. It’s research, conservation and studying history. When you’re on the ground you cannot see where people from prehistory lived. So with Google Earth you can trace a crop mark because it shows you signs of ancient occupation like buildings, roads. That’s where the interesting stuff lies. Our most significant treasure find was in 2014 on our Christmas dig. One of the guys came back and said, “Oh, I’ve got a hoard of coins.” So I looked down the hole and there were two or three stacked coins. And I said, “Oh my God, it’s Anglo-Saxon.” I had to go and tell the farm owner. He was busy with the sheep. And he said, “Oh, yeah, whatever.” “We need to sort this out.” And he stood there with his mouth wide open couldn’t believe what he was seeing. It’s a million pound hoard on his table. Ultimately it goes on display in the museum. There’s a lot more land to search. One day we might strike it big again and I’m pretty sure it won’t be long. To all those unearthing history Search on.

82 thoughts on “How a metal detector and Google Earth are helping one man uncover the past

  1. Please help me
    I have a meme page named @thegiglings I have uploaded a video sometime before ..
    It is mentioned by Instagram that video contains voilence and it has been removed from my page although it doesn't contain anything like that…but ok may be that video doesn't follow policy rules..
    But now I am unable to login my account and its showing error again n again

  2. link itext area not clickable, try https://about.google/stories/weekendwanderers ..
    For those wanting more information, http://www.weekendwanderersdetecting.com/_ABOUT_US/_about_us.html

  3. google maps is also very useful for scouting out odd/unique street signs to steal. you can turn a good profit if you have a cool street name near you 🙂 depending on the size of your city and funding they replace the signs every month or so

  4. I remember watching a show about this on the History channel. If I remember correctly it was close to a billion dollar horde of coins and jewelry. Pict or Celt. Very interesting.

  5. Makes me want to do this, it actually looks fun and exiting to try and see what you could find/unearth.

  6. And you got the french government which forbid to do this, so the detectorists keep their finds shut…. Well done dummies…

  7. W Polsce by poszedł siedzieć za to zgodnie z nową ustawą o ochronie zabytków.
    In Poland he could go to jail for this because of new historic preservation law.

  8. Espectacular! yo compré mi detector en detector-de-metales.net y va de fábula, ahora sólo me queda unirlo con GMaps… Interesante…

  9. Great video!!!! Probably when I use metal detector for discovering, maybe one time I could find one of the missing lost films underneath the ground, since films are in film cans and I could send them to the film archives when they are found. Since I'm very interested in film archiving. Keep searching for lost items everyone!!!! 🙂

  10. Been doing this for years now and I've found lots of things. But don't expect to get rich. A 10,- job will earn more. Yet it's lots of fun because it's kinda like buying lottery tickets. Everytime you hear that beep and you start digging you have a chance to find something special. And I love history.

  11. Me parece fatal utilizar un detector de metales para descubrir objetos antiguos. Mientras que a muchas personas les parece divertido sacar objetos antiguos con un detector y pensar que ellos o ellas han sido los primeros en descubrir algo, lo que realmente han hecho es cargarse la historia. Al sacar un objeto no estudias su estratigrafía y descontextualizas un objeto de su periodo histórico, porque aunque creas que has sacado un moneda romana quizás no este en su periodo. En España eso es ilegal y a no ser que tengas un permiso y si hallas algo lo comuniques a las autoridades.

  12. People ! You will not become rich over night metal detecting like everybody thinks they will. Buy a lottery ticket instead, stay in the comfort of your own home and crack open a few cans instead.

  13. I've done some metal detecting. Be prepared to be bored for 99% of the time… you do spend most of the time wandering along not finding anything except trash. But big finds, though rare, do happen. The UK has actually been called the real treasure island. It's been invaded and taken over so many times.. and before banks existed, people used to bury their wealth, planning to come back for it later. Well if something happened to them, the hoard was lost. So for all the ones found so far, there are probably very many more still lost……

  14. Please make sure to check the rules of your local office for the preservation of historical monuments or whatever it's called in your country. Just going out and doing this is illegal. it's harmful if people just remove coins from the context so that all other finds from that area are scientifically worthless. this video by google is irresponsible. well, it's not just harmful, it destroys the history of the place for all eternity. kind regards, an archaeologist from Germany. You won't get rich. You'll just make our job harder and be liable to prosecution if you do this illegally.

  15. Well done Pete !
    I remember the 1st time I went on a WW Dig I had a top of the range latest Sovereign detector and made some great friends and properly got hooked on the hobby back in the early days with Bill & George and fearless and many others who are no longer above ground sadly

  16. My wife is so happy I lost weight, and its because I discovered the interesting world of metal detecting.

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