Bristol creates process for those who want to metal detect in village parks

metal-detector-symbol-webThe Bristol Village Board on Monday created a process by which people interested in metal detecting could get a permit to engage in that activity in village parks.

The action passed 3-1 with Trustee Ruth Atwood voting against and Trustee Carolyn Owens absent.

Metal detecting had been banned in village parks unless specifically approved by the Village Board, said village administrator Randy Kerkman.

Kerkman recently received a request for such approval and thought it would be a good time to create a process that included issuing a permit. He also recommended that the person doing the detecting have to call in to Village Hall to report where they will be detecting on a given day so there is some record of where the activity has taken place.

Dallas Johnson, the resident who made the request to metal detect, explained that digging when a metal object is found is typically a 3-to-6-inch deep hole or plug. The soil taken put should be returned to the hole and the turf replaced, like a divot on a golf course.

The village’s insurance carrier advised against approving metal detecting, but the village would be covered for any accidents that occurred because of metal detecting, Kerkman said.

Most board members were in favor of approving the measure.

“The parks are there for people to use,” said Trustee John McCabe. “People are going to get hurt falling off slides or something else. It just happens.”

“There’s danger to anything people do in our parks,” said village President Mike Farrell.

“I’ve seen a million little boys out there digging holes,” said Trustee Colleen Fish.

Trustee Ruth Atwood however, did not approve, citing concerns about the liability.



  1. Alan says:

    Looks a good idea to me. Nice to see an authority with an open mind.

    I only wish councils in the UK were so obliging. Here they are frightened silly
    about health and safety.

  2. TONY GREEN says:

    This is a great idea! As soon as I read about it here I went down to get a permit. I was a bit early however, in that the forms are not yet ready. I just recently got into the hobby and have been restricted to un-turfed areas such as beaches and sand boxes. Typically one only finds clad or loose change in these areas. Most people outside of the hobby don’t realize that there is a code of conduct for detectorists and most of us adhere to those ethics closely. Responsible detectorist do their best to dig tight plugs so as to leave the smallest footprint possible.
    This is a great move by our village board and I am looking forward to getting my permit!

  3. Dallas Johnson says:

    Hello, thank you for taking notice of the actions in Bristol. Now lets NOT give them a real reason to remove these privileges. I would like to give a big thanks to John Mccabe he was a big help and I didn’t see it coming. Thanks Dallas

  4. Dallas Johnson says:

    Tony Green if you waned to go I have some other places that are pretty cool. Honestly I would like to have someone to join me occasionally. Safer too. I live in Bristol off hwy45

  5. Dallas Johnson says:

    TONY GREEN if you are interested I have handful of other cool spots to go metal detecting. I would enjoy some company occasionally to join me. It is safer aswell having a buddy in this crazy world. Hit me up at I live in Bristol off hwy 45 even the parks lets hit together.

  6. Great job by Dallas Johnson. I would encourage everyone to detect low key (no shovels ) to keep the parks available to detecting as people get the wrong idea when they see a detectorist with even a small shovel. A hand digger should do fine.

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