A snap general election was called by Prime Minister Theresa May on April 18.

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The vote is due to be held on June 8, subject to parliamentary approval.

Ahead of this the trade hopes the current government will clarify its position on a number of key points, such as the ivory trade and Brexit concerns relating to issues including import and export taxes. 

The prime minister said the decision to call an election is to bring greater "certainty and stability" during the UK’s Brexit negotiations. But reacting to the announcement, outspoken dealers, auctioneers and historians posted messages ranging from exasperation to self-promotion on social media.

Silver dealer Michael Baggott quipped on Twitter: "On the bright side it is just possible that Trump & Kim Jong Un will kill all of us in a nuclear war before we have to endure #election2017."

Many in the industry took the opportunity to post thought-provoking images or promote paintings and objects relevant to elections. 

Auctioneer Philip Serrell decided it was time to launch his own bid for power and tweeted: "June 8th - Vote for Serrell - built on a policy of Free Chips and Red Wine (Vin Angleterre of course)." 

On a similar light note, it appeared that perhaps the biggest immediate impact on the antiques industry on the day of the announcement of the election was the fact BBC's Bargain Hunt was cancelled for the coverage of the General Election announcement.  

Serrell summed it up with: