Scheme aims to provide consistency and professionalism across trade.
The National Association of Pawnbrokers (NPA) and Surrey County Council have together created a Primary Authority Coordinated Partnership to increase expert knowledge of pawnbroking and create consistency in how the trade works across the country.
The Partnership will give those opting-in to the scheme the assurance that policies and procedures in place in their premises cannot be challenged and changed from one local authority to the next.
Business Secretary Vince Cable MP has approved the partnership, which provides NPA members who opt in with ‘assured advice’ to deal with problems or issues as they arise.
In turn, the scheme should allow consumers to rely on the fact that opted-in NPA members are operating to the highest standards.
A special logo for the businesses that opt in, which can be displayed in their stores or on their websites, is being planned.
It is envisaged that the scheme will help in terms of both increasing expert knowledge of pawnbroking and ensuring consistency across the country. The NPA says it is committed to promoting the professionalism of the pawnbroking industry to current and future customers.
NPA chief executive Ray Perry said: "Working with Surrey Country Council is a great step forward for the pawnbroking industry. The new initiative will provide all Trading Standards officers with the information and legal guidance they require to deal with queries fairly and consistently. It will also help to demonstrate how our members are professional, open, accountable and meet the needs of a dynamic marketplace.”