Helen Glover's Olympic gold medal saved by Bourne End jeweller

Reporter:

James Harrison

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Olympic rowing champion Helen Glover had to call on the services of a village jeweller after her TV presenter fiancé managed to drop her latest gold medal.

Bourne End Jewellers was contacted by a ‘sheepish’ Steve Backshall after the mishap, which apparently left two sides of the gong damaged.

But it was no problem for Richard Bull, head goldsmith at the store in Bourne End’s Parade, who was able to fix the prize, which is largely made of silver, plated with gold, and weighs about half a kilo.

He said: “It started with a phone call from Steve Backshall, who said we’ve got this medal that got damaged and could we have a look.

“It looked like it had been dropped on something hard, like concrete and it was damaged on two sides.

“So I said leave it with me and I said I would do the best I could do.

“Bearing in mind that they’re made by machines and I wasn’t sure what I would come up against but, using my experience I, I sorted it out and hammered it and sanded it and gilded it.

“Helen came in for it the following day and was very pleased with it.”

He added: “He [Steve] was quite sheepish about it and I think that’s why he was so pleased when I said I could turn it around so quickly.”

The 30-year-old rower had picked it up at the Rio Olympics after winning the women’s coxless pair event with teammate Heather Stanning on Friday, August 12.

Double Olympic champion Glover initially revealed Backshall had broken the medal in an appearance on BBC Breakfast, later tweeting him to apologise for ‘dobbing you in for my medal’.

Mr Bull, who has run his jewellery business with wife Julie for more than 30 years, has since been contacted by another medal winner whose gong was damaged when a family member dropped it.

But he’s no stranger to high profile work and has worked on the Royal Borough’s civic insignia, as well as pieces belonging to army regiments stationed in Windsor.

In one instance he arranged to fix a clock for a soldier called William Wales, who later turned out to be Prince William.

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