Prince of Wales visits Anglo-Saxon gold hoard

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The Prince of Wales inspected treasures from the country's largest hoard of Anglo-Saxon gold, becoming the first royal to handle the artefacts for more than 1,300 years.

The Prince was given the chance to examine three items from the Staffordshire Hoard, including a crumpled cross and a sword handle, during a visit to the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery in Stoke-on-Trent.

Accompanied by the Duchess of Cornwall, the Prince also chatted with the farmer on whose land the Hoard was found near Lichfield last summer.

Museum officials said the Prince and the Duchess had been fascinated by the craftsmanship of the processional cross, even inquiring whether it could be straightened out.

More than 100 pieces of the treasure, which has been dated to the seventh century and is believed to have belonged to ancient kings, are currently on show at the museum.

The museum's principal collections officer, Deb Klemperer, showed the royal couple around the exhibition during their visit to mark the centenary of the federation of Stoke-on-Trent's six towns.

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