It is a great pleasure to introduce this year's Treasure Act 1996 Annual Report, which gives an overview of how the Treasure Act operated in England, Wales and Northern Ireland in the year 2018.
The Treasure Act relies on the time and expertise of many people across the country, including Finds Liaison Officers, funding partners and museum teams, who all deserve huge thanks for their hard work and contributions to the process. Finders and landowners are also at the heart of the Treasure Act and it's brilliant to see 76 finders and landowners who donated their finds in 2018.
I'd like to thank the Treasure Registry at the British Museum, the Amgueddfa Cymru/National Museum of Wales and the Department of Environment and Ulster Museum in Northern Ireland for their continued work to support the delivery of the Treasure Act across the UK. The Treasure Valuation Committee has also provided more expert advice this year, and I welcome their new chair, Roger Bland, who brings his formidable knowledge and expertise to the role.
2018 was notable for three rare finds that cast light on some of the earliest recorded history of these islands. The Iron Age chariot find in Wales and the Bronze Age bulla and sleeve fastenings found in England and Northern Ireland respectively, demonstrate the importance of the treasure process in extending our knowledge of the past and ensuring that important finds are available for the public to see and learn from.
We recently published the next steps following the consultation on the Treasure Act 1996. I hope everyone interested in treasure will engage with our ongoing work, building on past successes to make the Treasure Act 1996 even more effective.
Caroline Dinenage MP
Minister of State for Digital and Culture