Deal Hoy Pub landlord Ian Goodban and the Roman, medieval and Iron Age pottery he found
A passing visit by an expert to a pub has unravelled a mystery dating back millennia.
Now he has taken it to the Canterbury Archeological Society, which has confirmed that it is from the Iron Age and was used to store ashes of the dead.
Mr Goodban said: “I didn’t think anything that old could be washing around Sandwich Bay.
“It’s local history and it’s unbelievable how much history there is in Kent.
"I think a pub should be about the town and the community it serves, which is why it’s great when people come in here and say ‘wow, I didn’t know that’.”
The urn is not believed to originate from Kent, which means no local museum would take it.
Mr Goodban has put the results of years of beachcombing on display at the Deal Hoy, in Duke Street, from a gigantic whale jaw to pieces of wrecked ships, Venetian, Roman and medieval pottery, a cannonball and a First World War ammunition shell.
“I didn’t think anything that old could be washing around Sandwich Bay" - Ian Goodban
He has been interested in washed-up relics ever since he was a child and over the years he has made a lot of interesting findings, which are now on show at the Deal Hoy.
He added: “If I hadn’t picked these up they would have been smashed to pieces once the next few tides came in.”
Mr Goodban, a former science teacher at Dover Grammar School for Boys, is now in the process of recording all his findings through the Portable Antiquities Scheme.
He has kept the urn, but moved it to a safer place upstairs. He now plans to display it in a glass case.
For more information on small findings around the UK, visit the website at www.finds.org.uk