The Birmingham Assay Office has announced that it will be “closing all operations” from today (24 March) for the three weeks stipulated by the government.
The office said that the decision came in light of the Prime Minister’s lockdown announcement on Monday evening, and said that the move would “protect our employees as well as the integrity of our business”.
It said that its current plan is to ensure that all hallmarking orders that are currently in progress are to be cleared and despatched or made available for collection before it closes business at 4pm today.
It added that those with current orders being processed through SafeGuard, the Gem Lab or the Analytical Laboratory will be contacted separately with a “full and comprehensive” update.
Any orders that have not yet been dispatched, collected or completed by the end of today will be held at the Assay Office until it reopens.
It also added that it was the responsibility of customers to insure any stock of theirs which may be in transit to, or on the premises of the Assay Office.
In a statement, the office said: “We are living in extraordinary times but we remain confident we will all come through this ultimate challenge.
“We wish to take this opportunity to thank you, our valued and loyal customers, for your continued support and understanding during these incredibly difficult times.”
It added: “When we are through this crisis, the Birmingham Assay Office will be here to support you and to work with you. Together we will get through this.
“Sending you our best wishes from the entire team here at The Birmingham Assay Office.”