A young schoolgirl put veteran metal detectorists to shame by finding a Bronze Age axe just seconds after taking up the hobby.
Ava Bray, eight, begged grandfather Tony to let her have a go with his metal detector while scavenging on a beach.
The 62-year-old was astonished when it began bleeping moments later and she unearthed the 3,000-year-old weapon.
Veteran detectorists have toiled for years without discovering an ancient object as rare as the one found by Ava.
Now the schoolgirl, from Blackfield, Hants, is waiting to discover if she can keep the axe.
She made the discovery with her grandfather – a member of the National Council of Metal Detecting – on Dorset’s Southbourne beach.
Tony said: “Ava had been using the metal detector for only about a minute when she heard a bleep.
“She started digging to see what it was and found an object which was only six or eight inches below the surface.
“She shouted ‘It’s an axe’ and came over to show me.
“I could see it was made of bronze but didn’t realise how old it was until we got home and searched the Internet for clues.
“We were very lucky – some people with metal detectors can spend a lifetime searching and never find anything like that.”
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