Son's gold strike has a ring of fortune

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A grandmother celebrated yesterday after her son found her gold signet ring more than 20 years after she lost it.

Doreen Johnston, a retired nurse, lost the ring when it slipped from her finger as she played with her sons and the family's dog in a park in Stranraer, Dumfries and Galloway, in 1974. Family members visited the park every day for a week to search for it but gave up when they found nothing.

This year Mrs Johnston's son Robert, 26, began work on a project redeveloping Agnew Park as a tourist attraction. As he dug over the ground earlier this week he spotted something glittering in the mud.

The ring bore Mrs Johnston's initials and after an inspection he realised it must be his mother's. "I really was astonished . . . It was against all odds. I'd have had a better chance of winning the lottery," said Mrs Johnston, 55. "The ring was a gift from my grandfather . . . I had completely given up hope of finding it."