A group of magnet fishers were left stunned after pulling a Royal Navy CANNON dating back to the 19th Century out of a river – in one of the first discoveries of its kind. Six members of The Peaky Dippers spent several hours scouring the River Don, in Sheffield, after hearing stories about wartime artillery being dumped there.
And they were left gobsmacked when they latched on to a heavy item while fishing from the riverbank – and hauled out a 3ft (0.9m) antique cannon. The treasure-hunting group, based in Birmingham, later discovered it belonged to the Royal Navy Signals and dated back to the 1800s.
The weapon, which was found before Christmas, has been restored and cleaned up and now sits in the living room of Glen and Marie Collins in Sandwell, West Mids. The couple are both members of the Magnet Fishing group, which has been searching waterways across the UK in search of treasure for the past seven years.
“We’d heard stories about cannons that were sent to Sheffield to be smelted down after wars being thrown in the river,” said Marie, 50. “Only one cannon has previously been found by magnet fishers in a river but its origins were unknown and we know this is a Royal Navy Signals cannon.
“So we believe our find is pretty unique. We usually spent around eight to 10 hours a day magnet fishing and you often just pull out bits of scrap metal.
“It’s a lot of hard work and time-consuming. So it was unbelievable to pull out a cannon, we could not believe it.
“We were elated. We’ve found lots of cannon balls near battle sites but never a cannon before. “We had been fishing all morning from bridges but we went along the side of the river and my husband Glen managed to latch on to something really heavy.
“You can see in the video how elated we were to find it. You find all sorts in rivers but you don’t expect to find a cannon. It was absolutely amazing. “We’ve cleaned it up and it’s currently sitting on a display stand in our living room. We didn’t really know what else to do with it.”
Video footage uploaded to social media on Friday (5/1) captured the moment Glen, 43, and fellow magnet fisher Steve Forrest, 43, pulled the cannon from the river.
They can be heard laughing and exclaiming: “I’m going to cry. You beauty. I’m in shock. I’m speechless.”
Last year, Dave Sonik Jordan, 46, and Raymond Harper, 73, pulled a centuries-old cannon from along the same stretch of river.
It was hailed as the first time a cannon had ever been retrieved from a river in the UK.
Produced in association with SWNS Talker
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