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Prestige Pawnbrokers Team

Posh Pawn Gears Up For Christmas Special



Christmas is on its way and for the team at Prestige Pawnbrokers, it means an influx of affluent individuals flocking through the doors. From prosperous asset owners looking to augment Christmas shopping funds to savvy spenders in search of incredible gift deals, the festive season goes hand in hand with a boom in the popularity of pawn.


Scheduled for December, the Posh Pawn Christmas Special is sure to be packed full of action. With cameras shining the spotlight on Prestige Pawnbrokers HQ, fans are offered yet another exclusive glimpse at how the world of high end pawn broking operates.


While the rest of the UK may be gearing up for the Christmas holidays, the Prestige team will be pawning luxury items well into December. The Posh Pawn Christmas Special will shine the spotlight on some of the month’s most exciting deals, with the team traipsing a snow kissed UK to visit a handful of individuals. With last year’s Christmas Special seeing Caprice sell a designer dress for charity, fans can expect another episode featuring an altruistic gesture or two. After all, Christmas is a time for giving!


Of course, a Christmas special wouldn’t be complete without a sneak peek at what goes on behind the scenes when it comes to planning the festive bash. While the Prestige front of house work tirelessly to serve the hordes of customers streaming through the doors, the back office team is hard at work putting together a Chris Cringle to remember. Who knows, this year the cameras might even stay rolling as the team let their hair down, exchange Secret Santas and sip on well-deserved glasses of bubbly. There could even be a mistletoe encounter or two thrown in!


Fans are the heart and soul of Posh Pawn’s huge success, and the Prestige Pawnbrokers team is forever thankful. With Christmas hailed as a time to give thanks, the entire team will be extending their appreciation to the legions of ‘pawn stars’ across the UK.

How Helen, Joy, Nigel and Monica Got Started in the Pawnbroking Business


At Prestige Pawnbrokers, diversity is the name of the game. And we’re not just talking about our love for everything from luxury cars and fully functional helicopters to designer handbags and antique watches. We’re also referring to our incredible team of ladies and gents with serious expertise in the art of pawnbroking. Want to know more? Check out our quick guide to how some of our finest employees got started with Prestige.




From a young age Helen has always been surrounded by art and antiques – you could say it runs in the family. In the school holidays she worked as a porter at a local auction house in Dorset, quickly focusing her attention on luxury jewellery, gemstones and diamonds. She soon went on to study Gemmology with the  Association of Great Britain, which landed her a role in the jewellery department at Bonhams in London. Naturally, a career in pawnbroking followed. During her time in London and New York she’s issued millions of pounds worth of loans against luxury goods, including some of the finest diamonds on the planet!




Joy is our management guru extraordinaire, and keeps us all in line with her self-motivated, results-oriented and highly competitive approach. She has over 10 years of experience driving teams and personally oversees our e-boutique, where customers can browse a huge inventory of luxury preowned goods.




Name a professional jewellery qualification, and it’s highly likely Nigel can produce it. He has earned himself a National Association of Goldsmiths (NAG) diploma, is a registered valuer, a first-year FGA student and former manager of a high-end London jewellery showroom. After several years in the retail business, he started to seek new challenges and was quickly attracted by the exciting and innovative style of pawnbroking. He gets his thrills from researching unusual items, securing loan packages and meeting client requirements.




Hailing from Poland, Monica started her love affair with jewellery at one of Gdansk’s most exclusive boutiques. After graduating with a geography degree she moved to England – and quickly realised that her passion for jewellery far exceeded her interest in landscapes. While she started off small, Monica soon moved on to high-end pawnbroking, which kickstarted an infatuation with haute horology. She joined Prestige in 2013, and loves the opportunity it has given her to broaden her jewellery and watch expertise, as well as handle other unusual objects such as boats, planes and cars.

How Lawrence and Alicja Got Started in the Pawnbroking Business


Lawrance Pickett

London’s littered with hundreds of pawnbroking shops, but not all are created equal. Two of the city’s leading pawnbrokers operate in the heart of the prestigious borough of Richmond, and in Weybridge in Surrey. Both Prestige Pawnbrokers branches showcase a cornucopia of premium pre-owned luxury items, complete with a wealth of expertise from some of the best pawnbrokers in the business. Here’s how two of our most prized team members got started in the industry….


Alicja Luambano


As one of our loveliest ladies, Alicja has been building up her expertise in high-end jewellery for over six years. She first became infatuated with dazzling jewels back when she was 19, and went on to train at the National Association of Goldsmiths. This makes her one of our most valuable jewellery experts. We’d even go so far as to say that she’s priceless! While she adores all things that glimmer, Alicja also loves designer goods, cars and watches. What can we say? She’s a lady of fine taste! As well as pursuing a profession in pawnbroking, this switched-on gal is also a third-year BSc Social Science student.


Lawrence Pickett


While some people are born to pawn, others find themselves falling into the profession. Lawrence definitely falls into the latter category. After spending his early years in Nigeria, Lawrence finished school in the UK and found himself on the hunt for a stimulating and rewarding career that indulged his passion for jewellery – cue an interview with James! Lawrence was immediately won over by the big boss’s infectious enthusiasm for pawn, and quickly learned that it’s a lucrative and exciting business to be in. He now boasts over 30 years of experience in the jewellery trade, including stints with the Queen’s jeweller, Mappin & Webb. The people aspect of pawnbroking is one of the highlights for Lawrence – we can certainly testify that he loves a good chat! He’s also got an insatiable thirst for knowledge, which makes the research component a big drawcard for this self-confessed history buff. Of course, not all of us live and breathe our occupations, and in his spare time Lawrence loves to explore his new interests in modern and urban art, as well as memorabilia from bygone times.


Want to know more about how our fabulous team members got started in pawn? Check back for more later in the week!


How Jo Lawlor started at Prestige Pawnbrokers

Jo Lawlor_PoshPawn

Jo Lawlor_PoshPawn


Whatever the sector, every successful business is underpinned by a team of individuals with a genuine passion for achieving excellence. As one of the UK’s poshest pawn shops, Prestige Pawnbrokers knows the inherent value of arming itself with a tight-knit team. As PA to Managing Director James Constantinou, Jo is one of the business’s most valued employees. Not to mention one of the fiercest! She lights up every episode of Channel 4’s Posh Pawn and to celebrate her, we’ve put together a glimpse at how this lovely lady first got started with us.


 From pal to partner


James and Jo go way back, with a friendship spanning over 20 years. During this time the pair built a strong and trusting relationship ─ so when James threw open the doors of Prestige Pawnbrokers and found himself in need of a PA, he reached out to Jo. She was more than happy to take on the role, and has played an integral part in helping James Constantinou build the business into the celebrity pawnbroker it is today.


Holistic therapy meets high-end pawn


Unlike other members of the Prestige Pawnbrokers team, Jo doesn’t have a background in finance, nor does she specialise in niche luxury items. Instead, she spent 14 years in the health and fitness industry, with a particular focus on holistic treatments. She’s a qualified holistic therapist, and places a particular focus on stress management. Using acupressure, reflexology, Indian head massage and deep tissue bodywork, she was the go-to woman for people wanting to de-stress, reinvigorate and enjoy a happier, healthier existence. Making the switch to pawn broking was quite the transition! Today, her friends will playfully introduce her as “Jo, the woman who was into massage but is now into pawn!”


The heart and soul of Prestige Pawnbrokers


To the Prestige Pawnbrokers team, Jo is the heart of the business, and the glue that holds it all together. While other team members deal directly with clients, Jo takes the backseat and ensures that everything’s running smoothly. As a highly organised individual who’s efficient at problem solving, as well as patient and conscientious, the role of PA is perfect for Jo.

So is Jo here to stay? Luckily for the Prestige Pawnbrokers team, the answer is yes! She loves her current role and nothing beats the excitement of the Prestige Pawnbrokers premises.

From Property Developer to Pawnbroking Kingpin, James Constantinou

James constantinou

As managing director of Prestige Pawnbrokers, James Constantinou oversees one of the UK’s most coveted secured loans providers. So how did he go from small-time property developer, to celebrity pawn broker lighting up TV screens across the globe? Read on as we delve into how James got started in the industry, what drives the business to unsurpassed success and how he’s definitively reinvented the way the world views pawn.


The backstory


James is a self-confessed serial entrepreneur and has spent his career dabbling in a plethora of different areas. From vintage classic cars and property development to corporate sales and marketing, he’s developed a well-rounded set of skills that have turned him into a fierce businessman.




As an age-old practice, pawnbroking calls for a stack of different skills, from charming customers to spotting counterfeit goods. For James, high-end pawnbroking was the perfect opportunity to exercise his trading skills, while simultaneously indulging his passion for all things luxurious.


Prestige launches in London


James threw open the doors of Prestige Pawnbrokers in 2009, and hasn’t looked back since. Today he operates our two shops located in Richmond and Weybridge. Regular viewers of the show will know the business has been wildly successful and James credits this to his amazing team, and his willingness to say yes when others would say no. This bold search for success has led to the conquering of new heights. What’s James’ personal mantra? He always says, “I am a strong believer that to succeed in business you should have a hunger for gain, as opposed to a fear of loss.”


So what sorts of deals have graced the Prestige Pawnbrokers premises? James’ absolute favourites include a Ferrari Daytona worth £250,000, an art collection with a £1 million price tag, and rare literature that features in the Queen’s Windsor library.


Prestige Pawnbrokers hits Channel 4


Soon enough, Prestige Pawnbrokers caught the attention of the press, with James featuring in various articles and TV appearances. Thanks to dazzling deals involving helicopters, Ferraris, mini-submarines and more, he was approached by Channel 4 to feature in the reality show, Posh Pawn. The documentary follows the weird and wonderful assets that Prestige Pawnbrokers encounters on a daily basis, and has gone on to become one of the channel’s biggest hits. Episodes are broadcast across the globe and we’ve already signed on for a third season. Catch James on Channel 4 tomorrow at 8pm!



Introducing the Prestige Pawnbrokers Team

Prestige_teamAs one of the UK’s leading pawnbrokers, Prestige Pawnbrokers specialises in providing short-term loans secured against high-value items. Like any successful business, it credits its success to a tight-knit team boasting expertise, passion and an unwavering eye for detail. Here they are!


James Constantinou


James, a serial entrepreneur, founded Prestige Pawnbrokers in 2009 and has held the position of Managing Director ever since. His expertise is vast and varied, encompassing vintage classic cars, property development, sales and marketing. According to James, “The business is driven by my ability and willingness to say yes when others would say no. I have a thirst for success and a desire to reach new boundaries.” He’s a passionate believer that the key to business success is an insatiable hunger for gain, as opposed to a fear of loss.


Jo Lawlor


As one of Constantinou’s oldest friends, Jo was a shoe-in for the position of professional pawnbroker. While she now makes a living trading luxury second hand goods, she has a 14-year background in the health and fitness industry. In fact, Jo is a qualified holistic therapist and a lady of many talents!


Delyth Du Plooy


Hailing from North Yorkshire, Delyth first discovered her interest in jewellery while studying Art and Design. Today she boasts qualifications from the Gemmological Association of Great Britain and has travelled extensively in search of diamonds, gems and other rare stones. She considers pawn broking “an ancient trade that is just as relevant in society today as it was in Ancient Rome”.


Lawrence Pickett


Lawrence has racked up over 30 years of experience in the jewellery trade, with a particular interest in modern, urban and memorabilia pieces. He loves the people-oriented nature of pawnbroking, and gets a thrill out of helping clients turn trinkets into cold hard cash. As a self-confessed history buff, any item with a backstory immediately captures his attention. Perhaps this has something to do with the fact that he’s a legitimate descendent of Henry VII!


Claudia Valentin


This haute-couture loving gal has an undying infatuation with high-end assets, including fine art, jewellery and luxury leather goods. She has a background in bespoke jewellery design and boasts an impressive personal network of contacts. Her eye for detail plays an intrinsic role in her success, and, for her, “appraising brands such as Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Hermès, amongst others, has become second nature”.


More about other members of the team in the future posts.




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As Seen On Channel 4 TV!

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