The largest Bronze Age hoard ever to be discovered in London, and the third largest in the UK, is the focal point of Havering Hoard: A Bronze Age Mystery, the Museum of London Dockland
s new major exhibition.
The exhibition puts the 453 tools, weapons and other objects that make up the entirety of the hoard on display to the public for the very first time. Displaying the hoard alongside objects from both the archaeological site itself and the museums collection, the exhibition digs deep into Bronze Age life during a time when the land where London now exists was a very different place.
Starting with the moment of discovery, Havering Hoard: A Bronze Age Mystery takes visitors on a journey back through time to explore the mysteries, myths and realities surrounding the hoards burial.
All 453 never seen before objects from the Havering Hoard
Objects from the Museum of Londons permanent collection including Bronze Age crania showing evidence of blunt force trauma, telling a wider story of Bronze Age life thousands of years ago
Immersive photography and film projection recreating the experience of a Bronze Age landscape
A map from the Portable Antiquities Scheme displaying the location of more than 1,500 hoards across England and Wales helping to plot settlements on a wider scale
3D renderings of some of the key objects from the hoard to allow closer examination including a terret ring, a sword fragment and a socketed axe head all exceptionally rare examples of Bronze Age life
The design of the exhibition is arranged around the movement of the sun, its rise in the east and setting in the west, bringing the discovery of the Hoard to life. Starting with the moment the first object was found as the sun set late on a Friday evening in September 2018, visitors are able to immerse themselves in the wonder of uncovering such a significant find. Clues left by the hoard about the people who lived and worked in the area during the Late Bronze Age are examined before exploring how connected their society was to Europe almost 3,000 years ago. Visitors then find themselves back in the present day, with a chance to examine some of the objects in greater detail while finding out more about the people involved in the discovery of the Havering Hoard and the work thats still to be done.
Kate Sumnall, Curator of Archaeology at the Museum of London, said: We are excited to finally open the doors of Havering Hoard: A Bronze Age Mystery and invite our visitors to immerse themselves in everything from the landscapes of the Late Bronze Age period right through to the present day and the incredible moment of discovery. The Havering Hoard can tell us many stories about the people who lived and worked in London 3,000 years ago and we explore many of these in the exhibition. However, it also reinforces the importance of the archaeological process to our understanding of history. By highlighting the work of those involved, from the archaeological unit to the researchers and specialists, we hope to invite visitors behind-the-scenes and shine a new light on significant work taking place that you may not ordinarily see. As part of this process, we extend our thanks to Archaeological Solutions, Historic England and Havering Museum for their help in bringing the Havering Hoard to life.