Metal detectorists damaging Adelaide Hills ovals but only discovering coins — and sprinklers

Police are looking for metal detectorists who dug dozens of holes in two ovals in the Adelaide Hills — but those searching for gold might just be discovering sprinkler systems.

Key points:

  • Holes have been discovered in two Adelaide Hills ovals
  • Police and others blame people looking for coins and other metal
  • There are worries the holes could cause falls and injuries

SA Police said about 50 holes were dug in the oval and running track at Stirling East Primary School last Wednesday night.

More holes were also dug at the Uraidla Oval, also in the Adelaide Hills, last Friday morning.

Uraidla District Soldiers Memorial Park secretary Di Liebelt said the problem had been occurring for “quite some time” but it was only recently that a dog walker at the oval was able to take down a number plate of someone using a metal detector there.

“It’s not just Uraidla Oval and obviously Stirling East Primary School and anecdotally Balhannah Oval and other Hills ovals,” she said.

She said it was lucky no-one had been injured, especially with the Hills Football League season starting this weekend.

“But we just don’t want it to happen – it’s damaging our property,” she said.

Senior Constable Matt Brown, from SA Police, said there “may be gold in them thar hills” but people should not enter private property without permission, never mind damage it.

“If you are going to go about prospecting or digging for coins or metal, maybe ask the person first if you’re allowed to dig on their property,” he said.

“Kids are back at school now,” he added.

“We don’t want them falling over and hurting themselves because you might have found a penny somewhere.”

Gold and silver have historically been mined in the Adelaide Hills.



Author: Ivan Robinson