ISLAMABAD - The outgoing Deputy Head of Communication for the British High Commission Tom Hyde yesterday presented the Gujrat Museum a new cabinet filled with antiquities collected from ancient mounds along the River Jhelum. Funded privately by Hyde, the cabinet was gifted to the Gujrat Museum and the Archaeological Department, with Museum Director Yahya Sikander and Mobeenur Rehman taking ownership.
The cabinet, designed by a local Pakistani architect, features important artifacts from ancient coins, to votive terracotta animal figurines from the Indo-Scythian and Kushan eras (100BCE - 350CE) that were found by surface collection by Hyde and his archaeological companions -including Muhammad Nadeem Akhtar, Usman Ali and others - from mounds being destroyed by agricultural expansion. On presenting the artefacts back to the people of Pakistan, Hyde said: “My time in Pakistan is now coming to a close and this cabinet is my gift back to the people to whom these antiquities rightly belong. I will miss my trips across Punjab, I will miss working with Pakistan’s excellent archaeologists, but most of all I will miss waking up every Sunday morning not quite knowing what wonderful adventure is coming my way next.”