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Birmingham Assay Office – 250th Birthday Silver Commission Competition 2023 

Birmingham Assay Office launch Silver Competition to kick start their 250th Anniversary

In 2023 The Birmingham Assay Office will be celebrating its 250th anniversary.  Founded in 1773 to provide assaying (testing) and hallmarking of precious metal items (gold, silver, platinum, and palladium) as required by the Hallmarking Act

The Commission 

The Birmingham Assay Office is to commission a piece of silverware to add to its collection to commemorate its 250th Birthday. The piece should celebrate the history and heritage of the Birmingham Assay Office.  

The competition will begin on the 28th February 2023, all entries must be submitted by 31st March 2023 and the winner will be announced in April 2023. 

Criteria for entry 

  • UK based designers and silversmiths. You DO NOT have to be part of a Trade Association to take part.  
  • Entries must be designed and made in the UK. 
  • Designs should be made of Sterling Silver or Britannia Silver 
  • The items will be hallmarked at the Birmingham Assay Office and will include the BAO sponsor mark 
  • Winners must be prepared to make or have the item made and delivered to the Birmingham Assay Office by 11 August 2023. 


The competition will be judged by an expert panel, including Doug Henry, James Newman, Gordon Hamme, Craig O’Donnell and Russell Jeans and the winner will be announced in April 2023. 

The Prize 

  • The winning design will be added to the Birmingham Assay Office’s Silver Collection  
  • The winner and the winning commission will receive coverage in the appropriate media  
  • The Betts Group have kindly sponsored up to 3kg of recycled silver for the winning design. The winner will receive £5,000 to cover labour and materials for the silver. 

To Enter 

All designs are to be submitted as either hand drawn, painted or CAD drawings together with a completed entry form and received at the Birmingham Assay Office by 31st March 2023, 4.00pm. This can be submitted by post, in person of via email.  

The address is:  

BAO Commission Competition 
Birmingham Assay Office  
1 Moreton Street 
B1 3AX 

The email address is:  

Rules and Conditions of Entry 

  • The judge’s decision is final 
  • The organisers reserve the right to decline an entry without stating a reason 
  • The organisers cannot take responsibility for the late arrival of articles, articles lost in transit or broken on arrival 
  • The original drawings of the winning design must be given to the Birmingham Assay Office for display 
  • The prize is non-negotiable and no cash equivalent will be offered.  


Click here for competition entry form


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