Metal detecting event near The Kelpies unearths ancient Roman artefact

Falkirk district has many hidden gems and world-famous tourist attractions that bring in visitors from far and wide.

By Jonathon Reilly
Thursday, 27th February 2020, 2:43 pm
Updated Thursday, 27th February 2020, 3:56 pm

From traditional restaurants and country parks to The Kelpies and The Falkirk Wheel, the region boasts an array of sights to behold.

For some, however, the most intriguing aspects of the area are not quite as plain-to-see and require a certain level of knowhow in order to be uncovered.

One such group of people who fall into that bracket are those who take part in regular Metal Detecting in Scotland outings.

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Metal detectorists spent time searching for hidden artefacts on farmland near The Kelpies. Picture: Michael Gillen

The company is run by Camelon resident Colin Irvine (51) who offers metal detectors a chance to put their skills to the test at sites of historic interest, many of which are located in his home district.

Given the fact the Romans once occupied these lands, metal detectors regularly set out to try to find ancient artefacts hidden beneath the surface.

The members meet every Sunday and last weekend saw dozens turn out to enjoy a day of metal detecting in a field near The Kelpies.

Among the discoveries was a Roman brooch which will be passed on to the museum in Callendar House, Falkirk.

Former First Bus employee Colin, who has 20 years of metal detecting experience, said: “We’ve been going for many years and were previously Toddy’s Digs.

“We rent the land off of farmers and make sure it’s not a protected area. On average, we get about 50 people per week from all over.

“Last year we found five coin hoards all dating from the Medieval times. One guy found half a Bronze Age axe from 3500 years ago.

“We’re out every Sunday without fail and once a year we do a big charity event.

“I’d been to events in England where you would pay a fee and take part and introduced these here. It’s only £10, we don’t make a lot of money out of it.

“It isn’t a club where you’re committed to go all the time. You just turn up, pay your money and away you go.”

As well as the weekly Metal Detecting in Scotland gatherings, Colin also provides scuba diving and underwater metal detecting lessons at Bo’ness Recreation Centre on a Wednesday night, on top of regular metal detecting tutorials.

He also has his own shop in Winchester Avenue, Denny which sells metal detectors and accessories.

Colin added: “I teach people everything they need to know in three hours and give advice on the best machines to get and ways of making sure areas aren’t protected.”

For further information, visit or search for ‘Metal Detecting in Scotland’ on Facebook.