People can view a never-before-seen hoard of Roman coins from December 3 when it goes on display at Oxfordshire County Council’s Bicester Library until 3 March.

The exhibition is a chance to see the Stoke Lyne Roman coin hoard – the largest in Oxfordshire County Council’s collection – for the first time and learn more about how the museum acquires, catalogues and cares for them.

Councillor Jenny Hannaby, Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Community Services and Safety said: “These coins are another exciting find that helps us to discover more about the rich history of our county, and the Roman occupation of early Britain.

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“As the largest hoard in our significant collection of coins and artefacts, I am delighted that we’ve been able to bring this exhibition to Bicester. If you have an interest in history and learning more, this is the exhibition for you.”

To mark the start of the exhibition, Bicester Library is also hosting a “Roman Coin Hoard Day” on December 3, featuring activities for both families and adults alike, such as lectures on the hoard, making roman helmets and a question-and-answer session with the Museum Service’s archaeology team.

Those who have made their own discoveries, no matter how small, can also bring along their hoards to Finds Liaison Officer Dr Edward Carswell, who will be on hand to help them learn more about their finds.

The hoard was discovered in September 2016 by a metal detector on farmland.

The coins are all thought to date from the joint reign of Valerian and Gallienus (AD 253 to 260) to the reigns of regional emperors Tetricus I and II (AD 271 to 274) and Aurelian (AD 270-5).

The hoard also contains several unofficial copies that could post-date AD 274 but cannot be closely dated.

The Bicester area in the Roman era was predominantly rural with notable tribal boundaries at Aves Ditch and the river Cherwell. Nearby Alchester is the site of an ancient Roman town.

In 2019, at least 40 well preserved Roman period coins were found in west Oxfordshire.

The items were found by metal detectorists working with permission in a field at Walcot, near Charlbury.

The coins and a block of earth containing more coins were examined by a group of archaeologists and taken to the British Museum.

Archaeologists also found what is thought to be a handle or a broken pair of scissors.

Back in 1995, there was also a hoard of 400 Roman coins discovered west of Didcot.

Discover more about what’s on at Oxfordshire’s libraries and museums at:


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This story was written by Matthew Norman, he joined the team in 2022 as a Facebook community reporter.

Matthew covers Bicester and focuses on finding stories from diverse communities.

Get in touch with him by emailing:

Follow him on Twitter: @OxMailMattN1

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