Kirkby man’s rare find to go on display in national museum

One side of the 17th century Warburton Seal, discovered by a metal detectorist after being lost for centuries and now destined for the National Civil War Centre in Newark.
One side of the 17th century Warburton Seal, discovered by a metal detectorist after being lost for centuries and now destined for the National Civil War Centre in Newark.

A rare 17th century silver seal found by a Kirkby man will be displayed at the National Civil War Centre.

The artefact - which the British Museum describes as ‘one of the finest of its kind’ - was unearthed by the late metal detectorist Norman Daynes in a gunthorpe field 11 years ago.

Norman died in 2013, but his son Alan, also a keen detectorist from Kirkby, was keen to fulfil his father’s wish that the seal should return to Newark.

When it was originally offered to the museum in 2004 funds were not available to meet the valuation. The Magnus Church of England Academy has also contributed £500 to its acquisition as the grandson of William Warburton, who became Bishop of Gloucester, was a Magnus school old boy. One of the modern school’s ‘houses’ is still called Warburton.

But thankfully The Friends of Newark Museum raised £3,000 to ensure its purchase and it will go on public display when the £5.4m National Civil War Centre opens in Newark on 3rd May 2015.

Alan said: “Dad was thrilled by the find at the time – it was the best thing he ever discovered - and always wanted it go on public display.

“He would be a very proud man to see it amongst all the other fascinating objects in the National Civil War Centre.

The silver seal belonged to the wealthy Warburton family, who were ardent supporters of King Charles I during the epic conflict between Crown and Parliament that saw Newark plunged into three deadly sieges.

Jill Campbell, from the Friends of Newark Museum, said: “The seal is an outstanding object and because the Warburton family have such strong links with the Old Magnus Building it is the perfect place for it to be displayed.

“Once the British Museum delivered its glowing opinion there was no doubt it was worth the hard work raising the cash.”