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Retiree digs up gold buried in his garden to help grandchild onto housing ladder

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A worried grandfather, who buried £850,000 worth of gold in his back garden, has dug up a portion to help his grandaughter onto the property ladder, according to the boss of the firm that sold it to him.

Ron, a retired engineer, bought the gold from The Pure Gold Company between November 2015 and April 2016 to remove exposure to property, equities, bonds and cash amid concerns around the health of the global economy including the Brexit vote.

Rather than storing it in vaults, he buried the gold in his five-acre garden using a digger and created 18 unique versions of a map with co-ordinates – one for each of his family members, according to Josh Saul, chief executive of The Pure Gold Company.

Shortly after Ron bought the gold, the price of the commodity peaked when the UK voted to leave the European Union.

“His gold is up 43% in value since he bought it,” said Saul. “Even after digging up one eighteenth of the treasure he still has over £1m of gold buried in his garden.”

Ron, who prefers not to reveal his last name, said he has no plans to sell any more of his gold.

He said: “My grandaughter, against my best wishes, has decided to sell her gold and buy a property, but she’s not looking at this as an investment but as a roof over her head. In hindsight this is a sensible way to look at life. I have no plans to sell any of the gold, it’s my family’s gold, not mine. It just so happens that I’m the only one with a garden big enough to house all of it – it’s up to them if and when they plan to sell.”

According to Saul, Ron asked his son-in-law to help him dig up the gold which he then sold back to The Pure Gold Company through their Buy Back Guarantee, and the funds are now ready for when Ron’s grandaughter exchanges on her flat.

Saul said: “Of course Ron’s story is unique but his motivations for buying gold are definitely not. UK and European buyers are still uncertain about what Brexit will mean for their investments, and European elections may substantially change the political landscape.

“The stock market and property markets are volatile and the political climate in the US and Europe isn’t helping sentiment around the world. We’re currently seeing a big jump in South African clients worried about their currency and the safety of their economy and banks, while closer to home the UK bank stress tests are proving a strong motivator for clients to buy physical gold.

“With the US attacking Syria, we’ve already seen a 2% jump in the gold price. The consequential volatility in the equity markets are quite predictable but the extent of the gold price increasing is a difficult one to forecast.”

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