I was browsing on a market stall the other day looking at old photographs. I realised that it wasn’t so long ago that wearing of a hat was part of man’s daily attire. Not so today. Yes, the man with the hat is a bit of a rarity these days … except amongst metal detectorists.
Hats can speak volumes about the personality of the wearer. They have become individual trademarks. Just think of Winston Churchill. Crocodile Dundee, Tommy Cooper … or Gary Brun, the original ‘Detectorist With the Hat.’
Gary will forever be remembered as the originator and administrator of the UK Minelab Owners detecting forum and instrumental in the formation of the United Kingdom Detector Finds Database (UKDFD), as well as one of the stars in the TV series Hoard Hunters. He is rarely seen without his Western style high-crowned, wide–brimmed hat. Does he wear this one I wonder, because they are somewhat more ‘macho’ and less formal than other styles? Or is it simply to cover up a bald patch?
No. I guess the hat, apart from its aesthetic qualities, was very practical, keeping his head warm in winter and cool in the summer, unruffled in the wind, dry in the rain. Gary stayed at Winter Mansions on one occasion and actually took off his hat and hung it on a detector, before retiring for the night. What panache!
But, what do we usually see today on the head of the detectorist? The favourite gear seems to be either nothing or an adjustable, impersonal, plastic and nylon freebie baseball cap made in Taiwan, and advertising a detector manufacturer like Minelab or Garrett. Not quite the same.
Unless you are an employee of the organisation, you should not, without compensation, wear caps emblazoned with a company logo. However, plain ones are just the thing, but beware of wearing them at a cocked angle, inside out or back to front. Witty slogans such as ‘Old Fart’ should be avoided at all costs.
I am honoured you wrote about me in one of your articles. There are not many who have seen me without the hat. Someone asked do I wear it in bed! This picture should answer that!
There are detectorists wearing hats that are striving to become individual trademarks. Stephen is one, calling himself The Man With The Hat, who makes ‘scintillating’ videos and posts them on YouTube. What he hasn’t realised, is that he should wear the headgear only when the occasion demands.
A recent production (zzzzz) showing Stephen taking a selection of his detected finds to the local Liaison Officer and showing great disrespect to the lady by wearing his titfer throughout the meeting. One shouldn’t wear a hat indoors on any occasion! Unless, of course, you are Gary Brun!