A piece of history unveiled

April 06 2022

A METAL detectorist from Staple Hill has uncovered a medal commemorating a royal visit to Bristol, among a hoard of coins from Victorian and more recent times.

David Upton found 320 coins, ranging from farthings and halfpennies to silver threepenny bits and half crowns, in a metal pot buried on land in the Hambrook area in March.

The oldest he has identified so far dates from 1830, while the newest is a George VI two shilling piece dating from 1940 – a coin which could be spent in shops as recently as June 1993.

Placed at the bottom were three royal souvenirs – a coin celebrating Queen Victoria's coronation in 1838, a silver brooch from her diamond jubilee in 1897 and a medal struck specially for a visit by Victoria to Durdham Down in 1899.

An inscription on it says: "In commemoration of the loving welcome given by the children of Bristol to Queen Victoria on Durdham Down Bristol – Nov 15 1899, Herbert Ashman Lord Mayor."

Ashman was Bristol's first Lord Mayor, with the title created in 1899, and he was knighted by the Queen during the visit to Bristol.