Precious stone prices hit Hamilton & Inches

Jeweller Hamilton & Inches has its flagship store on George Street, Edinburgh. Picture: complimentary
Jeweller Hamilton & Inches has its flagship store on George Street, Edinburgh. Picture: complimentary
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A ROYAL silversmith has seen its profits hit by “soaring commodity and precious stone prices” and “difficult retail conditions”.

Pre-tax profits at royal warrant-holder Hamilton & Inches dropped by 66 per cent in the year to 31 March to £153,547, according to accounts filed at Companies House.

Turnover at the jeweller – which has its flagship store on Edinburgh’s George Street and a boutique in London – dipped to £6.9 million from £7.1m after the number of “high value sales” failed to match those in the previous year.

As well as producing items for the Queen, Hamilton & Inches has made a silver candelabra for the prime minister’s residence at 10 Downing Street, a crown for the court of the Lord Lyon and items for golf’s Open Championship and the Royal & Ancient Golf Club in St Andrews.

The company has also been the “official jeweller” at the Open since 1999 and will be exhibiting at Muirfield when the competition gets under way on Thursday.

The firm, which was founded in 1866, was bought by luxury goods group Asprey in 1992 but returned to Scottish ownership in 1998 through a management buy-out.