Department for Culture Media and Sport

treasure act 1996

The Treasure Act 1996 governs what is defined as treasure and how treasure finds must be reported and dealt with in England and Wales.

The Act was revised in 2003 to give a wider definition of treasure.

Coroners and Justice Act

The Coroners and Justice Act 2009 was passed in November 2009. It includes measures to reform the Treasure investigation system by removing the jurisdiction from local coroners and passing cases to a national Coroner for Treasure.

The Act also amends the Treasure Act 1996 by introducing a duty on a person who acquires (buys, inherits or is given) an object which they believe to be treasure to report it to the Coroner for Treasure. This will only come into effect once the Act has been implemented.

A further amendment enables a finder or acquirer of treasure to report that to a designated officer instead of the Coroner for treasure. The Secretary of State will be able to specify who is a designated officer by statutory instrument.

More information about the Coroners and Justice Act can be found on the Ministry of Justice website.

Transfer of administrative responsibility to the British Museum

Administrative functions related to treasure, such as supporting the Treasure Valuation Committee, have transferred to the British Museum. DCMS remains responsible for cases where the British Museum has an interest in the object. Visit the British Museum website.

Triennial Review of the Treasure Valuation Committee

Triennial Review of the Treasure Valuation Committee was published on 12 June 2012. Please also see the Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries ministerial written statement.