It’s strange the things you find when out enjoying the great outdoors and for one member of the public, a trip to Reynard’s Kitchen Cave in Dovedale, Derbyshire has led to historians and archaeologists being left with something of a mystery. The lucky finder stumbled across four coins and their information led to a full scale excavation of the cave which uncovered a further 22 coins.

The hoard of twenty-six coins was a mix of both Roman and Late Iron Age coins which is the first time that coins from these two civilizations have been found together. It also contained three Roman coins which predated the invasion of Britain by the Romans in 43 AD. The majority of the coins, which are a mix of gold and silver, are thought to belong to the Iron Age Corieltavi tribe.

No one is quite sure why they were hidden away? But after almost 2,000 years I’m glad we don’t have to pay them any interest. Roman coins have often been found in fields across the country, but this is thought to be the first time that they have been discovered within a cave. For the first time the National Trust enlisted the help of wounded ex-soldiers returning from Afghanistan to assist with the excavation. The coins have currently being cleaned by specialists in conservation at the British Museum and University College London. They will then be put on permanent display at Buxton Museum later in the year.

So the next time you are out and about, wearing in your Hi-Tec walking boots, who knows what you may find by accident and how long it has been there, but if anyone finds a pound coin at Teggs Nose in Cheshire it is more than likely mine as I lost one only last week. Maybe that won’t turn up for a couple of millennia and it will give historians of the future something to ponder.