Frome Museum Reopens with exciting new exhibit

Frome museum banner

Frome Heritage Museum reopens this Tuesday 14th March with an exciting new exhibit.

A metal detectorist has unearthed a Saxon Axe Head dating back some 1500 years, overturning current beliefs about the Saxon incursion into the West Country. The axe will form part of a new display tracing the history of Frome both chronologically and thematically. Many of the new exhibits have not been available to visitors in the past.

Frome museum axe displayDetectorist Mike McGuinness happened upon the find when surveying land at Oldfield Hall in Spring Gardens. The axe was buried 19 inches deep in one of the water meadows at Oldfield, and Mike immediately recognised it as a Francisca, a throwing axe used by the Saxons in their battles against the Romans.  The design of the axe dates it to between 450 and 550 CE, a date confirmed by experts at The British Museum.

Current thinking is that the Saxons did not reach this far west until the middle of the 7th Century.  Oldfield was called Aldefeld by the Normans, a word which in Saxon German translates as an “area of open country cultivated over a lengthy period”.  This supports that idea that the Saxons may have settled in Aldefeld long before St Aldhelm founded Frome in 685 CCE.

Frome Heritage Museum is open Tuesdays to Saturdays 10am to 2pm.

Admission to the museum is free, but donations towards the upkeep of this important community asset are most welcome.

Visit the Frome Heritage Museum website for more information.