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Hunting for hidden treasure – Detectorists style

Combining our fascination with the past and our love of the local area, this month we took a foray into the world of archaeology. On a mission to discover more about the history of our building and the beautiful countryside around it, we grabbed our metal detectors and trowels to explore the ground earmarked for our forthcoming office expansion.

Inspired by the hit BBC Four comedy Detectorists, we swapped Macs and mobiles for metal detectors and shovels as we explored the field next to our office on the outskirts of Billingshurst. The ground lies just a few yards west of Stane Street - an ancient Roman road originally built to link London to Chichester (or Regnentium as it was known by the Romans) established around 70 AD.

The ground will soon be developed as part of a plan to expand our existing office to accommodate our ever-growing team of marketing and design experts. The structure will follow the lines of the existing building – an attractive converted barn on the edge of farmland – to create a sympathetic addition in keeping with the surrounding environment.

Prior to the building work, we wanted to discover clues to the history of our plot. In just two hours of digging we uncovered a host of fascinating finds, including an Edward VII penny dated 1905, Roman pottery, a shell-shaped piece of silver, and various items of decorative metal. True to Detectorists form, there were also plenty of not-so-fascinating artefacts, such as rusty nails, drinks cans and chunks of abandoned farm machinery.

Peter Sutton, our Managing Director, said: "What started out as a bit of fun turned into a really exciting couple of hours. With four detectors between us, we uncovered a real variety of finds.

"Our staff are a talented bunch, with degrees in all kinds of subjects including Classics and History, so we're fairly well placed to identify everything we've found!"

2018 promises to be an exciting year for us, with an important milestone on the horizon – we'll soon be celebrating 25 years of business. From humble beginnings, PMW now employs over 30 staff at our Stane Street office.

"The company has grown every year and we're now bursting at the seams," added Peter. "Our new extension and parking area is much needed, but we didn't want to build over the field before investigating what might lie beneath. It's amazing to think of the history on our doorstep, and just serves to remind us how lucky we are to work in this beautiful part of Sussex."

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