Birmingham wins Touchstone Award

At the TSI annual Consumer Affairs and Trading Standards Conference and Exhibition in Manchester, Birmingham City Council won the award in recognition of its innovative initiative in relation to hallmarking.

The UK has one of the most rigorous hallmarking regimes, and with precious metal prices at an all-time high, the British Hallmarking Council is keen to encourage Trading Standards authorities to continue to enforce the legislation.

The winning entry featured an exercise managed by Trading Standards officer Gary Singh, who has developed a long-term enforcement project targeting the Asian jewellery community in Birmingham where un-hallmarked and un-carated goods are frequently found.

In 2011 a campaign targeted 21 Asian jewellers and 19 others. In total, 12 of the Asian jewellers were found to have non-compliant products and 104 articles worth £50,000 were seized.

British Hallmarking Council member Robert Grice said: “Birmingham’s entry was first class. It detailed a well-planned, long-term exercise, which is being regularly monitored to measure its success.”

The award was presented by chair of British Hallmarking Council’s Education and Enforcement Committee Mike Drewry and was received on behalf of Birmingham City Council by its head of trading standards Sajeela Naseer.

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