UK

Unopened Rations And 200-Year-Old Hat Found During Museum Stock Take

The historic items were found by trustees of the Prince of Wales’s Own Regiment of Yorkshire.

Unopened military rations and a 200-year-old hat have been discovered during a stock take of the regimental collection for The Prince of Wales's Own Regiment of Yorkshire.

The items were found by trustees of the regiment during a check of stock at an Army museum in York.

Regimental Collection Curator, Wing Commander (Ret'd) Alan Bartlett, explains: "We're finding out what we've got in the cupboard, recording it, wrapping it, putting it away - but putting it somewhere where we could find it again, and doing it we've found some amazing treasures.

"We as trustees have never done this, I've done it with small work parties.

"The big difference today is we're adding expert-level interpretation on the pieces of items we're finding - for instance World War One webbing, World War Two artefacts, in some cases 1960s," he said.

"We're going everywhere from 1746 to 1958, 1960, here today, so we need these experts to add that context."

The trustees closely inspect one of the museum's historic artefacts.

Colonel (Ret'd) Charles Le Brun, trustee and veteran of the Prince of Wales' Own Regiment of Yorkshire, he said he had "hugely" enjoyed discovering the historical items.

Just the sheer range, the curious juxtaposition as we're listing it," he said.

"For instance, one moment it's an SS police helmet, the next moment there's a medal from Culloden."

As generations of veteran age donate their possessions and valuables, storage can prove a challenge for museums and artefacts can become lost.

Col Le Brun said: "I have no magic solution as to how we cope with it except by rationalising storage, making sure we're storing what we should be storing, making sure we're storing it efficiently, and making sure we've got on display what we can put out on display."

Some of the newly-found treasures may go on tours of schools, others may be incorporated into new displays, while a few will be re-wrapped and placed back in the stores.