A woman was dumbstruck to discover that a ring found among ‘odds and ends’ in a charity shop featured a diamond worth thousands of pounds.
The woman, aged 58, who wishes to remain anonymous, took the ring along to a free antiques valuation event held by Hansons London in Keston, Kent - but only as an afterthought.
She said: “I wanted to have an opal pendant valued and only decided to take the ring at the last minute. I didn’t think it could possibly be real.
“I just assumed someone would have picked up on the fact if it was. The stone was so big, I thought no one could miss it if it was an actual diamond.
“My dad looked at it a couple of times and said ‘I’m not sure if that’s real’ but decided it wasn’t because, like me, he thought the stone was too big.
“I saw the ring around Christmas in a charity shop in the Bromley area. I love sparkly things, a bit of bling, and it really caught my eye. I found it in a plastic tub with lots of other jewellery. The box was marked ‘junk jewellery’. I paid £5.50 for it last December.”
But the lucky finder should soon be adding a few noughts to that figure because the ring is now set to go under the hammer at Derbyshire’s Hansons Auctioneers with an estimate of £7,000-£8,000 after being identified as a gold ring featuring a huge 2.30 carat diamond.
Sonia Jackson, valuer for Hansons Auctioneers and Hansons London (pictured in main image), swiftly spotted its worth at the free valuation event held at The Greyhound, Commonside, Keston, on April 19.
Sonia said: “I told her it was a real diamond and she was amazed. She’d had the ring for months and thought it was costume jewellery with a fake stone.
“I was delighted for her and brought the ring back to Hansons’ headquarters in Etwall, near Derby, to have it valued by our consultant jewellery specialist David Byrne. When I rang her to tell her the valuation I said, ‘I think you may need to sit down’.
Mr Byrne said: “This is a high quality, 2.30 carat diamond ring. The stone’s a real sparkler. They say diamonds sparkle and this stone genuinely does.”
The finder, who lives in the Bromley area, said: “This is the best stroke of luck I’ve ever had. I’m over the moon. You hear about things like this happening to other people but never think it will happen to you.
“I only wore the ring a couple of times. Now I know what’s it’s worth I couldn’t wear it anyway because I’d be too worried about losing it.
“I’ve only got a couple of rings and neither of them are any good. I bought a diamond ring in 1983 for about £10 but it was only diamond chip.
“I hope the ring does well at auction as I’d like to put the money it makes towards the cost of my daughter’s Masters degree. I won’t be spending it on myself, I’ve got everything I need.”The diamond ring will be sold in a Fine Art Jewellery Auction at Hansons Auctioneers, Heage Lane, Etwall, Derbyshire, on June 28. To find out more, call 01283 733988 or email [email protected] Entries are invited for the auction until June 1. Both Hansons London and Hansons Derbyshire offer free valuations every week. To find out more, visit www.hansonsauctioneers.co.uk or www.hansonslondon.co.uk.