Buried iPhone returned to owner after detector find

Michael Briggs (right) pictured with Paul Dalby. (photo supplied)
Michael Briggs (right) pictured with Paul Dalby. (photo supplied)

AN HONEST metal detectorist who found an expensive smart phone buried on Winthorpe beach managed to return it to its Leicestershire owner.

Michael Briggs, 40, of Skegness, has been enjoying metal detecting since last November and when he came across the latest iPhone 4S mobile phone, worth around £500, he couldn’t believe it.

“I found the phone last Wednesday night buried in the sand on Winthorpe beach and I thought someone must have been gutted to lose this because it’s a very expensive phone,” said Michael.

“A few people would have kept it, but not me, I’m too honest,” he added.

So Michael decided to try to find the owner by charging up the phone. To his surprise, it still worked and he scrolled through the phone book to look for a way to contact the potential owner.

“I found a number with ‘dad’ attached to it and thought I’d give it a ring.

“I hoped that they’d contact the owner, which happened to be a man from Leicestershire who had been holidaying in Skegness the week before.”

Paul Dalby was astonished to find out that someone had been honest and kind enough to return his phone and travelled up on Thursday night to meet Michael for its safe return.

Now Michael, who enjoys metal detecting with his wife Linda, wonders what else they might find.

He said: “At first I found coins on the beaches and things like that, then my wife thought she might like to have a go, so we got another set of equipment for her.

“Linda even managed to find an old Victorian lipstick case that must have been over 100 years old on Cleethorpes beach.

“I’ve also found old six pence coins.”

Michael says that he is too honest to keep items of such great value and is disappointed that metal detectorists sometimes get a bad reputation.

“I think it’s disappointing that metal detectorists get a bad reputation as not everyone is ‘nighthawking’,” continued Michael. “It can just be for a bit of fun.”

l If anyone has any land they would be happy for Michael to use, contact him at mbriggs@gibobs.fsworld.co.uk.