Hoardes leave gold behind as it leaves for London

Over 40,000 people have seen the Anglo-Saxon gold found in Staffordshire which has been displayed at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, Birmingham hoards Anglo-Saxon gold, as it leaves for London to be valued, The Staffordshire Hoard goes into hiding. People have queued for hours to see 80 of the 1,500 objects unearthed with visitors donating £30,000 in collection boxes so far to support moves to keep them in the Midlands.

The ambitions of the museums of Birmingham and Stoke-on-Trent to keep the hoard in the Midlands has won support from the British Museum and culture minister Margaret Hodge.

McLean hints that they would like to show the entire collection at some point in the future – although, in the long term, it could be divided between different venues. "There are so many materials," she says. "For instance, there are 84 sword pommels alone. That should enable us to use the collection in a creative way." http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/2009/oct/13/staffordshire-hoard-exhibition

Image reproduced from Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, Flickr gallery "The Staffordshire Hoard", http://www.flickr.com/photos/finds/3931740116/in/set-72157622378376316/

The success of the display, which the Birmingham Post suggests attracted 42,000 visitors, has however raised concerns over money-spinning opportunities that may have been missed. Members of the City Council Leisure, Sport and Culture Scrutiny Committee fear that money-spinning opportunities may have been missed but also want to plan proactively for how to benefit from a possible return of the gold to the Midlands.

“But many visitors to the Hoard display have contributed to the fund raising appeal and sales in the museum shop and the Edwardian Tea Rooms are up significantly.
“We have also marketed the queues, gathering email addresses and other information, while making people aware of other exhibitions and events.
“If we are successful in returning the Hoard to the Midlands, we will have an opportunity to build on the huge success of this ‘taster’ display,” he added. http://www.birminghampost.net/news/west-midlands-news/2009/10/15/council-chiefs-fear-chance-missed-to-raise-cash-from-anglo-saxon-treasure-65233-24933395/

An exciting find on the gold has enhanced it's link to Staffordshire with a Knot found in hoard jewels. The Staffordshire knot was found on a gold artefact not previously displayed and suggest the county sign is 500 years older than previously thought as it was believed to have originated from the 11th century, but the gold artefact dates back to at least the sixth century.

The find comes amid a National Lottery bid aimed to keep the find in the Midlands which may centre on plans to create an exhibition at Shugborough or the County Buildings in Stafford and also as Staffordshire County Council is to use the Staffordshire knot in rebranding it's logo.

Londoners will get chance to see the hoard while it is being valued with a temporary display of some objects from the hoard is due to open in the British Museum on November 3.


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