Welcome to the Shetland Metal Detecting Club & Historical Society

 We have a fascinating history covering the past 5,000 years when humans began to inhabit the island. Despite many archaeological remains, we have only a patchy understanding of those who lived in Shetland before the Viking invasions of around AD 800. Immediately before the Vikings arrived it’s clear that Shetland, like much of Scotland, was part of the Pictish culture. Over the past 1,000 years the island has been regularly visited by traders and fisherman who have left their mark.   Metal detecting is an exciting and healthy outdoor hobby. It can not only reveal the past history of an area, but has often complemented traditional archaeology leading to some staggering and highly important discoveries!

Although Shetland has always supported a small population, unlike mainland Britain, the island seemingly hasn’t been visited in the past by a huge number of different cultures. However, many Items ranging from the Viking era to the 16th century through to the modern day have been found by a few local detectorists – but with an area of 567 square miles there is still much more ground to cover!   One massive gap in Shetland’s history is whether the Romans during their 400 years of occupation in Britain and their conquest of Scotland actually set foot on the island?

Recent extensive research by Ms. Kerrie Meyer entitled “The Romans in Shetland” is not only based upon written evidence by several acclaimed scholars and authors, some as recent as 2012, but she’s carefully detailed past finds on Shetland of Roman coins and artefacts that coincide exactly with Agricola’s conquest of Scotland from AD 79 – AD 84.

Download her complete 12 page research document: Click >>[ The Romans in Shetland ]

In an effort to discover empirical evidence in order to prove the Romans did indeed reach Shetland, a small group of dedicated metal detectorists and amateur historians are already searching various areas in Dunrossness. Based on significant research, they already have permission to field walk and detect a number of local spots. We’re also asking Shetlanders if they or their ancestors have found or possess what might be Roman coins and artefacts found on the island and where they were discovered.

Detectorists must respect the law pertaining to the protection of Scheduled Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas and acts responsibly. Any significant finds are carefully documented and reported to the local museum as a matter of course. If you want to participate in metal detecting please contact John Wishart of Cunningsburgh at [ Metal Detect Shetland ] whose been on Facebook since October 2014. They show an array of many interesting finds throughout Shetland and I encourage local folk to use John’s page in order to display their finds and discuss the hobby.

Metal Detecting Law in Scotland: Click here to download