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They have four months to come up with the cash, which will be used to compensate the finder, metal detectorist Terry Herbert, and Fred Johnson, who owns the farm where it was discovered.

ATG columnist Richard Falkiner was one of four leading specialists brought in to value the hoard before the Treasure Valuation Committee set the price at £3.285m for the 1600-piece find.

Birmingham City Council has already told Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery and the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery in Stoke-on-Trent - who both want to acquire the hoard - that they will not fund the purchase out of local taxes, although it has raised almost £40,000 from a public appeal to put towards the cost.

Meetings have already taken place with interest groups such as the Heritage Lottery Fund.

To read more about the appeal, and for further details about the hoard and its discovery, log onto www.staffordshirehoard.org.uk