WW2 Relic Dig – How much can you find in 2 hours!?

I learnt quite some time ago, that you can’t just pitch up at a site that had a use during WW2 and expect to find stuff. Many things contribute to your chances of finding WW2 relics, from how much the land has changed, to whether or not it has/had a modern use, and even the type of soil. The important thing is that you do your research, before even trying to find the landowner to get permission.

I can spend weeks and even months researching a site before deciding on whether or not it is worth detecting. I go into it in a lot more detail  here…..


The site where all the below was recovered from, is an old permission of mine that even featured in an episode of ‘WW2 Treasure Hunters’, and still keeps producing finds after repeated visits. This highlights just how much stuff they disposed of at this old RAOC depot. At the end of the war, they processed over 30,000 tons of ordnance through the depot. It was then either allocated for re-use, recycling or disposal. The really unstable stuff was disposed of on site, by the simple method of digging a great big pit, chucking it all in (carefully), they blowing it up with a few blocks of TNT.

It is the remains of ordnance disposed of in this way that I find in the corner of one field.

I had planned on spending 4 or 5 hours at the site, but I chose a rather bad day for it as it began to rain heavily only a couple of hours into the dig. I have dedication and stuck it out for a bit, but soon realised I was soaked to the skin and needed to get dry, and called it a day.

So how much can you find in a 2 hour dig, at a site you’ve researched extensively and detected many many times? I can count the visits to this one location in the high teens, but it still keeps giving!

If you would like to see some of the relics being recovered, here is a link to a video of the dig……


On to pictures of what was recovered……


Not bad for 2 hours!
Cleaned stuff. I didn’t clean everything as I had so many bits of shell case wall and drive band!
Base of 20mm Oerlikon cartridge case and internal bit from 40mm nose fuze
PDF – Point Detonating Fuze. This is from an obsolete American 75mm weapon, which we must have kept stock of just in case!
No 3 fuzes from British Mk V antitank mines
Picture of Mk V mine showing fuze and gaine in place
Bottom portion of fuze from a Mk II antitank mine
Diagram showing fuze in situ
40mm drive/rotating bands and pieces of cartridge case
Booster tubes from 40mm
Top of nose fuzes from 40mm
40mm HE projectiles, blown apart during destruction
Markings on head
Markings on head
Markings on head
Markings on head
Just a few bottom portions of 40mm Bofors cartridge case!

Not too shabby at all for a couple of hours and getting soaked!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s