British army dump – Huge volume of finds!

There is one site that I have permission to dig that gives up the goods time and time again. I’ve visited it so many times now, I’ve lost count, but each time I go it throws up another surprise. Whilst this blog isn’t about a recent dig, (this is one from 2 years ago), it does show the kind of volume of WW2 relics that you can recover, if you know where to look!

It would seem that, at this site, the British army disposed of a huge volume of kit at the end of the war. Finding the site, contacting the landowner for permission, then identifying where to dig was half the battle. The other half was the digging itself! This isn’t a small site, with the dump pit being the size of a football pitch. As so often with sites like this, you can be digging 2 feet away from the guy next to you and find nothing but rusty tin cans…..yet the guy next to you can be pulling out relics right, left and centre. It’s all down to pot luck really, and a healthy dose of perseverance.

When digging an old dump site, it is important to keep going as you never know what the next shovel full of rusty unidentifiable rubbish will reveal. This site is just the same, and on this dig we hit a ‘seam’ of Kerr sling buckles, (Thompson SMG), that just kept going. In among this seam were lots of other relics, and it was a matter of sifting through everything to find the interesting stuff. I admit that most people would be ecstatic with a couple of Kerr sling buckles, but when you’ve been digging them all day, they get a bit ‘samey’!!!

So, the dig gave up the following…..

 

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Before cleaning
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Water jacket corks, Vickers or M1917 Browning
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Funnel spouts from M1917 Browning MG. Lewis aerial sight.
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Mk 2 and 4 Sten mag loading tools. Lee-Enfield butt plate.
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Bore/barrel mirror
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American weapon oil can
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Bakelite spike bayonet scabbards
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Sten Mags
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More Bakelite spike bayonet scabbards and various bottles. Bren oil bottles.
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Lee-Enfield sling buckles. Lewis MG aerial sight. 303 cloth belt starter tab. P14 grenade discharger cup adapter. Tab, securing, Bayonet. Vickers Pawl springs. Various webbing buckles. Browning M1917 funnel spouts. Mk 4 Sten mag loading tools. and more….. !
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50kg of Kerr sling buckles
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Kerr sling, Lee-Enfield sling buckles and pull through rods, spread out so you can see just how many were recovered!
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Garand oil bottle. Vickers feedblock pawl spring
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P14 grenade discharger cup adapter
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Vickers Mk III cloth belt starter tab
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Bakelite spike bayonet scabbards
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Bakelite spike bayonet scabbards. Bren oil bottle
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Various webbing buckles and tab, securing, bayonet
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Kerr sling buckles. Lee-Enfield pull through rods
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Kerr sling buckles. Lee-Enfield pull through rods
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Lee-Enfield sling buckles. Brass frame for Vickers/Browning water jacket corks. Tab, securing, bayonet. Pull through cleaning rod. Cap and brush from Vickers oil bottle.
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Kerr sling overlap buckles and webbing buckles. Strap ends.
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Kerr sling buckles
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Close up of Kerr sling buckles
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Close up of Kerr sling buckles
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Lee-Enfield pull through rods. Mk 2 Sten mag loading tool. Bore/barrel mirror
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Close up of bore/barrel mirror
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Close up of bore/barrel mirror
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Pull through cleaning rods
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Sten mags after cleaning
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Vickers feed block bottom pawl spring
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Lewis aerial sights and various pull through/cleaning rods
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Vickers cloth belt stretching tool
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Browning M1917 funnel spouts
Browning MG water funnel 3
Spout shown in situ on original leather funnel
Browning MG water funnel 4
Spout shown in situ on original leather funnel
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Had to post this again…..not bad for one day’s digging!

One heck of a dig and it took weeks to clean everything! Just goes to show if you do your homework, the rewards can be great!

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