CHAMPION panner Mick Gossage has again struck gold with three medals in a national competition.

The estates and sites service manager at Darlington College of Technology took three top wins at the Scottish and British Gold Panning Championships, in Wanlockhead, Dumfries and Galloway.

Up against 100 competitors, he took part in three competitions managing to find eight, five and seven flecks of gold hidden in 45lb of gravel.

The feat earned him the Scottish Gold Panning Championship, the Scottish Veteran Championship and the British Gold Panning Championship respectively.

"I didn't miss a single piece and also set the fastest times of just three minutes which was great," said Mr Gossage. "I am having a good year so far."

His latest success means he has now qualified for the European Championships, due to be held in July, in Spain and the World Championships in South Africa in September.

Mr Gossage has panned for gold for the past 20 years and is president of the British Gold Panning Association and chairman of the World Association's rules committee. He was introduced to the pastime by a family member.