This programme will air tomorrow (Sunday 3rd July) at 6pm on BBC1 – however it looks like it will only be on BBC One West Midlands. The rest of us will have to catch it on iPlayer!
TV historian Dan Snow travels across the old Kingdom of Mercia unravelling the secrets of one of Britian’s most significant discoveries – the Staffordshire Hoard. The Hoard offers 1,500 new clues into the Dark Ages and Dan pieces together the lives of the people living in those long-forgotten kingdoms.
The Staffordshire Hoard shone a dazzling light into the shadowy world of the Dark Age Midlands.
One thousand six hundred years ago the Romans abandoned Britain. A new, mysterious era in British History began – the ‘Dark Ages’.
‘Dark Age’ Midlanders left precious little evidence that they had ever been here at all, until very recently.
New light was shone on the period following an unremarkable request from a man with a metal detector to explore a field in Staffordshire.
Metal detectorist Terry not only struck gold, he made the find of a lifetime.
When the experts arrived the true extent of the hoard started to become clear. This was a find unlike anything they’d seen before.
Suddenly there were over 1,500 new clues into the Midlands’ Dark Age past – pommels from tops of swords, pieces of warrior helmet, strange serpents and mangled crosses.
The hoard was huge, and packed with beautifully crafted artefacts from one of the darkest periods of the Dark Ages. But what did it actually tell us?
Could one lucky find really revolutionize our thinking of Anglo-Saxon England?
And is it so significant that the history of the Dark Age Midlands will now have to be completely re-written?