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Hallmarking Steps


Simple steps to hallmarking

To sell precious metal articles legally in the UK, you need to have them hallmarked.  Our aim is to provide a simple, practical guidelines which simplify the hallmarking process from registration, submitting your work and payment options, to receiving your work back with a beautifully-crafted London hallmark.

 Register with us | Complete the Hallnote | Package your articles | Delivery/Collection of your articles | Payment

Speed of Service|Locations|Bespoke & Display Marks

Second Hand|Change of Use|Additions Mark 

Register With Us

To start hallmarking, first you need to register here. On registering with us, you select your sponsor's mark design which can be applied by laser. If you require a struck mark then you are also able to order a punch at an additional cost.

If you are a full, or part time student, you can take advantage of our exclusive student registration package. You will need to send proof of your student status to apply. 

The Sponsor's Mark

When you register with us, you are registering a sponsor’s mark - the first symbol in the hallmark. Each sponsors’ mark is unique and therefore provides a traceable link to the source of an article. A sponsor’s mark must comprise of  a combination of two to five letters (3 max. letters for swan neck punches) enclosed in a surrounding shield.

You can choose laser only, or laser and punch registration. Unlike other Assay Offices we don't charge extra to apply the hallmark by laser.  If you select a laser-only package it means your hallmark will be applied by laser every time you send work in.  (You could contact us to have a punch made of your sponsor’s mark at a later date, but this would be an additional purchase.) Read more about the different methods of hallmarking.

A ten year registration fee costs £72 (including VAT) and is renewable after 10 years. This fee includes free laser set up for standard designs. 

Should you wish to purchase a punch so you can have your hallmark struck you can buy a punch additionally. Cost depends on quantity of initials requested - see below.

You can register online here and will be guided through the choices.

A specially commissioned beaker from 2010 - showing multiple sponsor's marks as decoration.

Swan Neck Punch (top) and Standard Punch (below)

Selecting the correct punch for your work 

All punches are manufactured by our engineers in the workshop within Goldsmiths’ Hall. They can be cut on two different types of shank. These are known as “straight” and “swan neck” and are finished by hand to excellent precision.

As a guide, a swan neck punch should be ordered if you make rings. The crook in the neck enables a mark to be applied neatly inside the curve. This type of punch can also be used on flat surfaces, making it the preferred choice if you are only ordering one punch.

Swan neck punches cannot be made larger than 1mm in height. Straight punches are used on items with a flat surface where the markers have a clear line of sight, which may include silverware, cufflinks and pendants. 

The size of the punch should reflect the type of articles to be hallmarked, and choosing the correct size is paramount. A large punch will be unsuitable for delicate items as the punching process will displace the metal.  

Sizes start from 0.5mm and go up to 6mm in height.  See size chart on Our Hallmarking Methods page.

Renewal of Your Registration

Your registration expires after 10 years. In your online account a notification will appear 6 months prior to its expiry. Please follow the links there to renew your registration. If you renew after the deadline full registration costs will apply. Your punch will be destroyed if not renewed. More information on the renewal process can be found here.

Instructions on how to set up your Online Account can be found here.

Need more punches once Registered?

Once you have registered it is possible to get more punches made. Click here for more information.

Complete the Hallnote

Once you have registered, and you are ready to submit your work to us to hallmark, you can either do so online, OR you will need to complete a paper hallnote.  It’s your “order form” for us, describes the articles and metal, and gives you an area to write any special instructions you have for us.  

You can complete the hallnote online (the information you enter goes directly to our database, and generates a document to print off and include with your packet), or use a paper form, but you must submit one with your articles. Complete it as fully and clearly as possible.

Submit your online hallnote in your Account section.  The website guides you though the step-by-step process but you can read a guide on the website here. You can also track and pay for your packets in your Account area.  

Or, you can download a paper hallnote and a Special Request Form should you need one in the Downloads section. Read our Guide to Completing Your Hallnote.There is a paper hallnote surcharge.

Please note that each metal, fineness, sponsor's mark and marking method need to be submitted with its own separate paper hallnote.  Remember, one metal, one standard, one hallnote! This reduces the likelihood of error and helps improve turnaround times.

Submit items for struck marks at the site (Goldsmiths' Hall or Greville St) where you hold your punch. You will have selected where this was held when registering for your sponsor's mark or will have told us where to hold your punch if your registration pre-dates the opening of Greville St.

You will need to separate newly manufactured goods from second hand goods, and give separate hallnotes for those too. 

Finally, special assays and smelting requests need to be submitted on separate hallnotes. 

Bespoke & Display Hallmarks

Under normal circumstances, it’s left to the discretion of the Assay Office to place the hallmark as appropriate, according to the product type, taking into account construction and the stage of manufacture when submitted – we have default positions in which we place the hallmark.

We have centuries of years of knowledge in this area, with in-house tool making facilities if required. However, if you have a specific size or place you want the mark placed, you need to request this on the hallnote.  We also recommend that you use a non-permanent marker to mark the position before submission. Please bear in mind that struck marks need to be supported with a tool in some way, so it is not always possible to mark in the desired position.

Bespoke (Display) Hallmarks are

  • Any hallmarking formation not in the standard format such as spaced, spot, vertical marks or hallmarks in a different order.
  • Any ring with a hallmark larger than 0.75mm
  • Any other article with a hallmark 1.5mm or larger.

Moderate Bespoke Hallmark

  • Any hallmarking formation in the standard format -with dimensions as follows:
    • Any ring with a 1.00mm hallmark in height.
    • Any other article with a hallmark 1.5mm to 2.00mm inclusive.

Complex Bespoke Hallmark

  • Spaced further than minimal spacing, staggered, spot, curved, bespoke hallmarking formation or marks above dimensions listed below:
    • Any ring with a hallmark larger than 1.00mm.
    • Any other article with a hallmark larger than 2.00mm.

Specific Hallmarking formations can be found here, enabling you to request accordingly.You are welcome to indicate your own.

Mixed Metals

Your items are allowed to have multiple metals present and can have additional part marks added to signify all these metals. See our Mixed Metals page on how to submit these items to us and what rules must be followed when using more than one metal.

Package Your Articles

Package your work in the least amount of packaging possible without compromising the safety and security of your work. 

A charge is applied where the packaging used adds additional time to the standard handling of a packet. "Handling" is something which may need to be executed before the hallmark can be applied e.g. opening a poly bag, removing tissue wrapping, sliding butterflies off earrings, untying or untangling items. Two or more handling procedures incur a charge.  Check the price list for full information. 

We are on hand to offer advice so if you are unsure of anything please get in touch.

Delivery/Collection of Your Articles

By Post – Please send all your work by Royal Mail Special delivery to our main office at Goldsmiths' Hall.  

By Hand – you can submit work to us by hand to our main office at Goldsmiths' Hall or the Greville Street sub-office.

By Courier – You can use a secure courier service to deliver and collect your work. You will be responsible for arranging collection and delivery as well as any costs incurred.  

If you are sending someone on your behalf to collect your work, and they do not have your receipt, please email Goldsmiths' Hall Logistics or Greville Street Logistics with the packet number and name of the courier or person collecting. They will need to show ID and quote your packet number. 


In all instances, deliver all metal component parts where items are incomplete/unassembled.

It is your responsibility to get packets to the Goldsmiths' Company Assay Office. Any charges for delivery of packets will not be accepted unless agreed in advance. Items sent by post will incur a small handling fee - see price list in Downloads area. 

Before submitting your articles please refer to our terms and conditions. Submit any items for struck marking at the site where your punch is held.


Find out about our prices in our Pricelist which can be downloaded from here.

You need to pay for your hallmarking before we release your articles to you. If submitting your work by post you will receive an email alert when your articles can be paid for.  

The most straightforward way to do so is by paying online in your Account section.  Find out how to pay online here.

If you submit your packet online, you can even pay on submission of the articles, so you don't have to wait until it is hallmarked to pay.  Please note, if additional services are required during the assay/hallmark process, further charges will be incurred.

Alternatively, you can pay by card when collecting your work.

Note - We do not accept American Express.

To apply for a Credit account, please contact us for more information. Upon receipt of your statement you can pay via BACS transfer to the details stated there or at our counters if you bring the statement with you.

Choose your time

One Hour Service | Next Day 'Early Hall' Service | Standard Service


Depending on the service level selected and the type of marking required, packets can take between 1 hour and two weeks. You can have your work marked quicker by using a Priority Service - One Hour, or Next Day (aka. Early Hall).

If you choose to have laser engraving on your priority packets, this may increase the time it takes for us to complete your work overall, depending on the complexity of your request.

One Hour Service

Get up to five items hallmarked within one working hour.

  • Items can be laser or struck marked.  If you would like a struck mark, you must take your work to the office which holds your punch
  • Moderate and complex bespoke marks cannot be applied on our 1 hour service
  • Available at Goldsmiths’ Hall and Greville Street
  • Not available for packets submitted via post
  • Cost: £80.00 for up to five items
  • Latest submission time is 2 hours before closing
  • T&Cs apply

Next Day Service 

Up to 10 items at Greville Street and up to 30 items at Goldsmiths' Hall completed by the end of the next working day.

  • Items can be laser or struck marked
  • Logos, engraving and bespoke marks incur additional charges – they will be processed as a priority but the completion time cannot be guaranteed
  • By Post - Postal service available at the Hall only. Packets which are posted to us will be completed by the end of the next working day, posting out on this day of completion
  • Drop off & Collect - Drop your packet at Goldsmiths’ Hall or Greville Street and it will be ready for collection by end of the next day 
  • Cost: 50% on top of the standard hallmarking charges
  • T&Cs apply


Standard Service 

No limit on quantity of articles you can submit at Goldsmiths' Hall. This service is unavailable at Greville Street.

  • Items can be laser or struck marked
  • Logos, engraving and bespoke marks incur additional charges – additional time may be required
  • Postal service available at Goldsmiths' Hall 
  • Typically turnaround is 5-10 working days - however work may take longer in times of high demand
    • Day of receipt is classed as Day 0
    • Days quoted are estimates
    • Days quoted do not include weekends
  • Please sign up to automated email service in your online account to be told when your packet is ready
  • We are unable to give more specific times than our estimation until this lead time has passed
  • Cost: as per price list
  • T&Cs apply


We offer state-of-the-art offices in three convenient London locations

Goldsmiths’ Hall

  • Our flagship office, where hallmarking began almost 700 years ago
  • Offers our full range of services  

Meet the Hall team here, and the office contact details here. Read more about the Hall itself here

Front entrance at Goldsmiths' Hall


  • Provides a premium hallmarking service from country of origin to plane to distributor with greater efficiency and lower security risks for importers and exporters
  • This service is operated in conjunction with Brinks
  • Use of this office is by prior arrangement – please contact Customer Service
  • See the benefits here


Greville Street

  • Specialises in priority hallmarking services for small quantities of items
  • Conveniently situated for the local community of Hatton Garden
  • Please note we do not accept post packets at the Greville Street office
  • No moderate or complex engraving 

Rules for Services & Submission by Site

The table here indicate submission rules dependent on service level and site. These correspond with our Terms & Conditions. 

Services for Importers and Distributors

Goods that are shipped from abroad can be sent directly from the supplier to Goldsmiths' Hall, speeding up the supply chain and eliminating unnecessary transport costs.

Goods will be checked against the invoice or delivery note, assayed and hallmarked as normal and then forwarded to your desired destination. Direct from manufacturer to retailer. 

Alternatively importers may like to use our Heathrow office for our premium service which is run in partnership with Brinks. Contact us for more information.

Please also see Imports & Exports

Second Hand

The second hand item service is for items that are submitted to us where the metal or fineness is unknown, usually because the items, or part of the items, were not made by the person submitting it for hallmarking, or if pre-owned items are melted together creating an unknown standard on a new item.

Often parts of the same item consist of different metals or finenesses therefore requiring additional testing or verification of each individual item rather than a sample batch test. When items fit into this category the second-hand service fee in our Pricelist will apply. You can see the Pricelist in our Downloads section here.

Second hand packets cannot be processed in one hour or overnight (“Early Hall”), if you select an Early Hall service we will process your packet as a priority but do not guarantee a turnaround time. Due to the complexity the lead time is usually significantly longer than standard hallmarking services; at least 7-12 working days.

All second-hand services need to be submitted at Goldsmiths' Hall. Each item can be grouped together regardless of metal type as the strongent checks need to take place for each item. They should not be submitted with items which are newly made.


Change of Use / altering already hallmarked articles

The practice of altering already hallmarked articles is becoming increasingly popular - below are our guidelines on this process and detail on the various outcomes. Where an item already bearing a hallmark is changed on purpose, ie. a spoon is shaped to become a bangle, it still needs to be submitted to an Assay Office for verification to ensure its provenance is detailed.The law as outlined in The Hallmarking act states: ”.. it shall be an offence for any person to make an addition, alteration or repair to an article bearing approved hallmarks, except in accordance with the written consent of an assay office.”We call the process of granting consent for alterations, “Change of Use”.There are four possible outcomes:

  1. If you change an item from one form to another, without adding any metal to the product, we will process this as a change of use packet, assaying the metal, ensuring the hallmark remains valid, adding a reference number to the piece and assigning this number onto a change of use certificate which can accompany the piece when it is sold.  

  2. If you add metal to the original item (there are weight restrictions as stated in 5(4) of the Hallmarking Act* Pg. 7) and change its use then we assay and hallmark this in its own right, charging a second-hand item fee, cross-hatching over the existing mark, leaving the provenance of the original hallmark and applying a new hallmark on to the piece at the appropriate standard.

  3. If you add metal to the original item (there are weight restrictions as stated in 5(4) of the Hallmarking Act* Pg. 7) which has not had its use changed then an additions mark can be applied.

  4. If there is no hallmark on an item, irrelevant of whether the use of it has been changed or had parts added, then it needs to be submitted for a new hallmark and charged as a second-hand item if the standard of the metal is unknown.  This also applies if the hallmark is deemed illegible by us.

All Change of Use Services must be submitted at Goldsmiths' Hall.

Please submit as a second-hand service packet and state in special requests "Change of Use". This will then be treated as such.

*You can get a copy of the Hallmarking Act in the Downloads section here.

Additions Mark Formation

The additions mark is used when new metal is added to an already hallmarked item and consists of either:

1. Sponsor’s mark, traditional fineness symbol, millesimal fineness and date letter where the existing Hallmark is a London mark

2. Sponsor’s mark, date letter, traditional fineness symbol and millesimal fineness where the existing Hallmark is not a London mark.

1. Sponsor’s mark, traditional fineness symbol, millesimal fineness and date letter where the existing Hallmark is a London mark

2. Sponsor’s mark, date letter, traditional fineness symbol and millesimal fineness where the existing Hallmark is NOT a London mark.