WW2 Relic Recovery – Fuzes, Fuzes & more Fuzes!

It has been more than 2 years since I last went digging for WW2 relics, but I have finally got myself back out there. I had spent a couple of years doing nothing but digging for the TV show, ‘WW2 Treasure Hunters’, and needed a break from the mud, backaches, lacerations and hours of cleaning dirty relics. I never lost my love of WW2 relics and the history each one holds, but had fallen out of love with digging! I intended to take a few months off, but then covid hit, so that few months became a couple of years.

I decided to get back out there, but wanted somewhere to dig that I knew would be productive. Last thing I wanted to do was take my first trip out in over 2 years and find nothing but beer cans, condom wrappers and fag packets, (I have some unusual permissions!). So, I spoke to the landowner of a site we filmed for WW2 Treasure Hunters, where I knew I could find plenty of WW2 relics, and with permission granted, set off for an afternoon’s digging. Turned out that I actually spent an hour and a half digging and had to stop due to my finds bag being full!

I knew what I would find at this site, and already had plenty of examples, (100s), of what was there, but regardless of this, they are still important relics and need preserving for the history they hold. And I did indeed find lots of No. 3 mine fuzes and 40mm Bofors shell bases, but I also came back with an item I didn’t have an example of so I was rather pleased.

This trip was also different as, for the first time, I was using a GoPro. Admittedly the holder I had for it was rather dubious, (see the video!), and it worked. Kind of. Link to the video below, showing loads of WW2 relics as they are recovered.

Please do watch the video as it gives you an insight in to how WW2 relics are recovered. Pictures of everything recovered are also shown below, just in case you’ve not got 15mins spare to watch the vid.

Not a bad haul for only an hour and a half
Not bad after a good clean. Want to know how I get the relics like this? Check out one of my other posts, https://stephentaylorhistorian.com/2019/12/04/cleaning-ww2-relics/
Booster tube, 303 cartridge, top portion of a primer and a fuze component
No. 3 fuzes for Mk V British anti-tank mines
Some are nicely marked
If they are in half decent condition, some show manufacturer and date, in this case 9/43
Bottom section of 40mm Bofors shell cases
The headstamps clearly visible with a decent clean
No. 119 fuze, completely inert. First example of this fuze I’ve ever found, and it expands the history of the site even more, as it shows they were blowing up larger artillery shells as well, most likely 25pdrs
Dated 11/42

I have found a lot at this site, and many people may think that once you have a few examples of one particular relic, you move to a new site. The way I think of it is that every item is an important piece of history, so they are all worth saving. I still get excited when I find a 303 cartridge for heaven’s sake…….and I have over 15,000 of them! So these will be added to my collection, and indeed have been, as the pics below show. You can never have enough WW2 history………

Found quite a few of the 40mm bases at this site
As well as plenty of examples of the No. 3 fuzes

4 comments

  1. Hi Stephen Nice to see you out detecting again and a blog, think these last two years have been so hard for everyone.But probably nothing compared to those during the war years.  But its hard for us to visualise those years and maybe they would struggle likewise to cope with covid.Please do some more tv programmes they were brilliant.Have a good Christmas.Janet Sent from my Galaxy

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  2. Hi, I’ve just happened upon your program on Sky. My dad was on BZ 938 Wottawitch of C flight when she went down in Burma January 1945. Its well documented. I would love to see it recovered as I believe the 3 crew in the rear may not have escaped the crash.
    I have my dad’s diary from his time in Malta 1942.
    Is any of this of interest to you or your contacts?

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