European Council for Metal Detecting

Back in May I mentioned the new European Council for Metal Detecting, and four days ago, Liam Nolan, the General Secretary left a comment. I want to share it again because I think it’s important, and because I’m hoping that a few detecting folks (and manufacturers) in the US will take note of the effort. The UK already has the established and well respected NCMD while we here in the states have absolutely nothing. Would someone tell me why?

Thanks Liam for taking the time to respond and for doing all that you…


Thanks for those kind words of encouragement. Sometimes the best rewards require an uphill struggle, but that’s ok with the ECMD. I am but one person within the ECMD and the members are a pretty determined and knowledgeable lot. They are all determined to get their respective countries on board with promoting a good working relationship between detectorists and archaeologists and others involved in archaeology.

About 4 months ago I attended the Archaeology2025 Conference in Dublin, representing both the ECMD and the Irish Metal Detecting Society. It was a case of walking into the “Lion’s Den” as the large gathering contained eminent scholars, field archaeologists, politicians, landowners and many other groups associated in some way with Irish Heritage. I have to say that my fears were not realised and I was well received, listened to and in turn I took notice of what everyone else had to say.


Liam Nolan

We moved from table to table, fresh group each time and new topics to chat about, everything being recorded. At one table I asked the group to imagine we were inside an office, looking out onto a field where we could see 10 detectorists at work. I then asked them to accept that not one of those 10 detectorists would be in the field if they were not 100% committed to what they were doing.

I asked could we say the same thing about 10 archaeologists working in an office. Several of that group would perhaps have lost the early excitement and passion for archaeology, their wellies never muddied anymore and yet they stayed in the job as the salary fed the family and paid the mortgage and their horizons now were focused on retirement and pension. Detectorists come and go, but those who remain are an essential link in the complete Heritage package.

I have now had the official feedback forms to complete that will impact on how Irish Archaeology is rolled out up to 2015. The simple words Irish Metal Detecting Society were in print as a contributor and you cannot imagine how much of a big step that is for Irish detecting, the first time since 1987 that the authorities recognised the existence, never mind the contribution, of responsible detecting.


The ECMD does indeed have an uphill task but that will not be a huge problem as they have the energy for the job and the President Igor Murawski from Poland is one formidable leader who knows how to navigate the (uphill) journeys that lie ahead. They will be running uphill I am sure!

Archaeology2025 proved to me that we should always seek to sit down and talk through issues with those who we could so easily label as enemies of detecting. They usually turn out to share our passion for rescuing buried heritage but they have no actual knowledge of what we do. They only know what they have been told through channels of misinformation.

The ECMD will never give up, they will always keep knocking on doors and making solid arguments for fair detecting Laws. They have successes in several European countries already and now they will keep the ball rolling for every countries benefit….



Just to refresh your memory, here’s another Liam Nolan effort on behalf of the Irish metal detecting community.



I am certain that this post will fall on deaf ears because tekkies here in the colonies are too busy digging holes and making videos, and the idea of having an effective group to represent them is totally beyond their comprehension. Or at least it would seem so…..





Filed under Metal Detecting

9 responses to “European Council for Metal Detecting

  1. Hi All…it’s Avery from the Task Force for Metal Detecting Rights Foundation. Yes, I’m still out there, all alone, with no other person from our “executive board” responding to any of my e-mails.

    The outreach the TF made to the other Large Detecting group went nowhere.
    It seems we as Detectorists here in the “colonies”, or as Liam likes to call us stateside, don’t seem to care, put any effort into help our hobby, and just want to post their finds to “show off”.

    The TF did win a major victory in NYC this year, but the attitude even here seems to be a big “Ho-Hum”. As long as a very small group of people do the work, the majority just seems to sit back and enjoy the benefits, without putting in any effort!

    I will be retiring this year (from my company) at the age of 70, and hope to find some other interested, willing to work, individuals to help me revitalize the TF.We have some resources, just not the people power.

  2. Hello Avery:

    You have my sympathies:-

    “..with no other person from our “executive board” responding to any of my e-mails.” Says it all. Retire and enjoy your time. Let the rest of them go to hell – it’s what they deserve.

    With a few exceptions, Americans have in respect of organising their own defences, been found wanting, and that’s their democratic choice. However, if as it seems they don’t give a f**k about the survival of their detecting future, why should you or anyone else?

    Best wishes

    John H

  3. James M. Fielding

    I think today’s attitude of non-response to the threat to our hobby of metal detecting is due, in part, to what you said. No one gives a damn, and all they care about is promoting themselves with massive amounts of videos, and for what, I have no idea. I think the whole thing stems from the fact most everyone I meet is a “Newbie.” I swear, if I see one more post saying “I’m new to this hobby…!” I’m gonna scream. Unlike the “old days” when we were dedicated to the art and science of metal detecting, the new practitioners seem to have arisen out of the 2007-2008 gold rush, when gold prices went thru the roof, spawning a whole new crop of get-rich-quicksters, who seem to think that metal detecting is a competition to the end. These new people are not interested in the long-term-viability of the hobby itself; and when the vein runs dry, or the hobby outlawed, they will all go back to their golf or football, without a care and toss their machine in the closet.

    • James I never thought about the newbie thing but you might be right. I used to think it was because I’m getting along in years and just don’t understand the new breed of detectorist, but I am convinced now that they just don’t care. Social media has made everyone an instant Indiana Jones.

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