Help save the Lenborough Hoard of 5,248 rare Anglo-Saxon silver pennies for Bucks! Anglo-Saxon coins are not often found, and this is the largest hoard of these coins from anywhere in Britain for over 150 years. Buried around 1035 AD, it is made up of coins of Ethelred the Unready and Cnut the Great. Because the hoard was wrapped in a sheet of lead to protect it, the coins are fantastically well preserved.
Most people know the date of 1066, and the Norman invasion of England, but very few know that 50 years earlier, exactly 1000 years ago this year, we were conquered by the Vikings, and these coins are from the kings on both sides of that war.
In 1016 AD, Ethelred the Unready, one of the last Saxon Kings of England died and Cnut, leader of the invading Vikings, became king, making England part of a forgotten Anglo-Scandinavian empire, with Norway and Denmark. We want to help bring the story of this forgotten invasion back to life. If Cnut's sons had survived, the country would not have been in a state of civil war when William the Conqueror invaded 50 nyears later, and the outcome might have been very different...
The story so far...
This fantastic hoard of silver coins was found by a metal detectorist in December 2014, and has now been declared Treasure. It has been valued at £1.35 million, and the reward will be split between the finder and landowner. Bucks County Museum is trying to raise the money to pay the Treasure reward. We hope that most of this money will come from national grant giving charities, but we want to raise at least £50,000 locally. We need half of this to come from crowdfunders who care about what happens to our history & heritage.
If we cannot raise the money, any parts of the hoard that we do not buy will go back to the finder and landowner, and will be split up and sold on the open market, possibly being sold abroad. The hoard will be lost to the British public.
If we do raise the money the coins will be saved for the public, and the future. They will be on display at three local museums close to where the hoard was found - Bucks County Museum in Aylesbury, Buckingham Old Gaol Museum, and Milton Keynes Museum. We may also be able to loan some of them temporarily to museums in Scandinavia, as there is a big interest in Cnut and his legacy there.
Equally importantly, ALL the coins will be available forever for researchers to study in depth. Since these coins are usually only found singly, or in small groups (usually fewer than 20) finding 5,000 together, which were minted in 40 different towns over England, gives us an unparalleled opportunity for research into Anglo-Saxon metalwork technology and how trade worked in the country at the time.
More detailed technical information about the hoard can be found on the national Portable Antiquities website: https://finds.org.uk/database/artefacts/record/id/657399
This hoard is a fantastically important part of our heritage, both locally and nationally, and the museums are determined to save it.
If we are unable to raise the full amount, we will save as many of these important coins as we can, so every pound donated will help preserve a little more of YOUR heritage.
1000 years ago, Ethelred lost the crown - you can help us save the hoard!