Scottish Gold Designer Rings by Sheila Fleet
Mined, Designed and Made in Scotland
Sheila Fleet has been chosen as one of only two jewellers to be an authorised maker and retailer of Scottish Gold from the Cononish Gold Mine.
Scottish Gold comes from remote hills in the West of Scotland, near the village of Tyndrum. It is mined by Scotgold Resources who have named their project after the valley where the mine sits and the river it overlooks—Cononish meaning 'where the waters meet' in Gaelic.
Cononish Gold Mine is Scotland's only commercial gold mine and Sheila Fleet Jewellery are honoured and delighted to receive the very first gold to be made available to jewellers.
Scotgold Resources are acutely aware of the wild mountainous environment in which they are working and are using only clean, modern methods to recover the gold. The mine is currently in a trial phase and is planned to become fully operational in early 2019. The supply of gold from Cononish will be limited even with the mine in full operation and, consequently, rings and jewellery made in this beautiful metal will be rare and exceptional items to own now and in the future.
Read more about Scottish Gold in our blogs
Cononish Scottish Gold
Sheila was present at the official opening of the mine on 3 August 2016. A very exciting day!
First Scottish Gold Sold
Scotgold auctioned 12 one-ounce coins or 'rounds' of Scottish Gold in November 2016. Sheila was delighted to win number six.
Sheila Fleet and her son, Martin, with their 'Round' of pure Scottish Gold.
Frequently Asked Questions about Scottish Gold
How do I know my jewellery is made from authentic Scottish Gold?
Great care has been taken to protect the origin and the provenance of Scottish Gold. Scotgold appointed The Dragonfly Initiative to advise on responsible supply chains and systems of tracking from mine to market. Edinburgh Assay Office and UK refiner Baird & Co have worked closely with The Dragonfly Initiative to create a 'closed loop' supply chain with 'chain of custody' controls at each stage.
At no point can the gold be mixed with other sources at any point from the moment the gold leaves the Scotgold mine to the final stage when it becomes a piece of jewellery. Sheila Fleet Jewellery has agreed to adhere to strict rules on how they use the gold. Furthermore, Baird & Co add a 'secret formula' of trace mineral to each batch of gold they refine and alloy for Scotgold. This trace mineral is only known to Baird & Co and the Edinburgh Assay Office. Once the gold is made into jewellery, it is sent to the Edinburgh Assay office to be hallmarked as either 18 carat or 22 carat gold. At the same time the jewellery will be tested for Baird & Co's secret formula and only if it tests positive may it be marked with the Stag’s Head, the mark of Scotgold's Precious Metals in addition to the 18 or 22 carat hallmark.
How is Scottish Gold different from ordinary gold?
Scotgold Resources are acutely aware of the responsibility that comes with operating in one of the wildest and most dramatically beautiful places in Scotland. The mine is located in a remote, stunning mountainous landscape. This scenery is highly valued by people the world-over and is recognized as sufficiently important to be included in the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park. The Cononish mine uses chemical-free, clean, modern methods to recover the gold. A 'gravity and flotation' method separates the gold from the host quartz and any processing is completed safely off-site. It is vital that the clear streams and rivers of the West of Scotland remain uncontaminated and pure for future generations. Scotgold's management are committed to respecting and preserving the natural surroundings, the vegetation and the wildlife in this truly golden glen.
Scotgold Resources is also dedicated to ensuring Cononish remains a Scottish affair and that the local community can take pride in the country’s first commercial gold mine.
Gold jewellery that bears Scotgold's Stag's Head Precious Metals Mark is guaranteed by the Edinburgh Assay office as being made from 100% pure Scottish Gold. The secret trace mineral in the alloy is a minute amount that will only be detectable to the Edinburgh Assay office laboratory. It will not change the appearance of the gold itself and will behave metallurgically as ordinary gold.
How much Scottish gold is in each piece of jewellery?
100% of the gold used in jewellery that bears the official Scotgold Precious Metals Mark of the Stag's Head comes from Scotgold's Cononish mine. No other sources of gold are used in these items. However, pure gold is too soft to use in jewellery by itself. Gold must be alloyed with other metals such as silver, rhodium or copper to make it strong enough to retain its shape and hold gemstones in place. Baird & Co are a highly reputable refiner and have been alloying gold for generations. The Edinburgh Assay Office's primary purpose is to independently test each jewellery item to be sold as gold to make sure it contains the correct amount of pure gold to be marked as 22ct, 18ct or 9ct. The Assay Office then stamps the piece of jewellery with the appropriate hallmark. Sheila Fleet is offering customers 18ct Scottish Gold.
All of the gold content in jewellery marked with the Scotgold Precious Metals Mark is certified by the Edinburgh Assay Office as being from Scotgold Resources Cononish mine in the West of Scotland.
Will Scottish Gold jewellery cost more?
Yes, there will be additional costs for ensuring the provenance of the gold. The gold has to be segregated from all other sources of metals and it must be kept separate at each stage of processing. When gold is mined, it is bound with other rocks and minerals. To recover the gold, the mined ore needs to go through several processing steps, ending in smelting and refining, to produce a pure gold suitable for the jewellery market.
When gold reaches a refinery, it is usual for it to be smelted together with other sources of gold. Scotgold's Scottish Gold is not mixed with any other gold. Scottish Gold is delivered in specially sealed containers to the refiners, Baird & Co, who refine the gold in isolated batches, segregate it and store it separately in Scotgold's designated containers. The Vault Manager records the weights each time the gold is removed and placed back into the vault.
Once the gold is refined, it must be alloyed with other metals to make it strong enough for use in jewellery. Baird & Co also add a ‘secret trace element’ to the alloy. This is known only to them and the Edinburgh Assay Office laboratory. When the Assay office receives a piece of jewellery to hallmark, they will also test for the 'secret trace element'. They will only mark jewellery which achieves a positive test result for the correct amount of the 'secret trace element' with the Stags Head, the mark of Scotgold's Scottish Gold. These careful measures do make the product more expensive but serve to protect the integrity of Scottish Gold's origin and provenance.
Who is involved with Scottish Gold?
Scotgold Resources run the Cononish Gold Mine near Tyndrum in the West of Scotland. Scotgold are committed to recovering the gold responsibly within the outstanding landscape surrounding Tyndrum and to keeping the project a Scottish venture.
Scotgold employs local people at the Cononish Gold Mine and as much as possible of the gold they extract will be marketed in Scotland. It is being made available to people in Scotland and beyond as jewellery through two family jewellers of which one is Sheila Fleet Jewellery.
Baird & Co have been refining and alloying gold for generations. They will turn the 'raw' gold from Cononish into different types of Scottish Gold suitable for Sheila to create into Scottish Gold designer rings. We are delighted that will we be able to offer Sheila Fleet customers the choice of Scottish Gold as 18 carat yellow gold, white gold or rose gold.
Baird & Co will add a secret trace mineral formula to each batch of gold they refine and alloy for Scotgold. This formula is known only to Baird & Co and the Edinburgh Assay Office. It is this formula the Edinburgh Assay Office will identify and confirm before any piece of jewellery can be marked as Scottish Gold with the Stag's Head of the Scotgold Precious Metals Mark.
Interestingly, Sheila bought her very first set of tools from Baird & Co when she won a post diploma bursary for a summer placement with Andrew Grima in London in the late 1960s.
Cononish Gold Mine, basking in sunshine, near Tyndrum, West Scotland
Edinburgh Assay Office will stamp all jewellery verified as being made of Scottish Gold with the Scotgold Precious Metals Mark showing a stag's head. Only jewellery which has tested positive for Baird & Co's secret trace formula may be stamped as Scottish Gold and carry the Stag's Head mark.
Scottish Gold will also be hallmarked. Hallmarking indicates the amount of gold content in any piece of jewellery, for example, whether it is 9 carat, 18 carat or 22 carat. 24 carat is pure gold so the higher the carat the more gold there is. 24 carat gold is too soft for jewellery hence small amounts of other non-gold metals are added to ensure the gold is durable enough to wear.
The Scotgold Precious Metals Mark of the Stag's Head guarantees that all the gold within the whole item is Scottish Gold from Scotgold's Cononish Gold Mine in the West of Scotland. The additional hallmark verifies the Scottish Gold as either 18 carat or 22 carat, Scottish Gold will only be available at these high carats and not as 9 carat gold. Sheila Fleet are offering customers the choice of Scottish Gold as 18 carat yellow gold, white gold or rose gold.
The Dragonfly Initiative has worked closely with Scotgold, Baird & Co, the Edinburgh Assay Office and Sheila Fleet Jewellery to ensure a secure chain of custody from the mine to the completed piece. At no point can Scottish Gold be mixed with other sources of gold. Scottish Gold is segregated and treated separately at Bairds & Co and at Sheila Fleet Jewellery. Dragonfly oversaw the sale of the first gold to be made available to jewellers to Sheila Fleet Jewellery and one other jeweller, Hamilton & Inches, on 6 June 2017 in Edinburgh.
Present to sign the Scottish Gold agreements in Edinburgh at the Royal College of Physicians on 6 June 2017 were Vivien Johnston and Assheton Carter of The Dragonfly Initiative with Chris Sangster, Richard Gray and Nat le Roux of Scotgold Resources, Scott Walter of Edinburgh Assay office, Peter Green of Baird & Co, Sheila and Martin Fleet of Sheila Fleet Jewellery and Shonagh Massey, Ross Haston and Stephen Paterson of Hamilton & Inches.