Amateur prospector finds 5.5kg nugget of gold worth £250,000 in Australian outback


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The Independent Online

An amateur prospector has found a 5.5kg nugget of gold worth £250,000 in the Australian outback.

Using a state-of-the-art handheld metal detector, the unnamed man discovered the huge Y-shaped nugget buried in previously searched earth near the town of Ballarat in Victoria, Australia.

The man says he initially thought he had stumbled on a car bonnet before seeing a “glint of gold”. He added that as he cleaned the piece “the gold kept expanding and expanding”.

The nugget is said to measure 220mm in length, is 140mm wide and 45mm at its deepest point.

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Ballarat Mining Exchange Gold Shop owner and dealer Cordell Kent said: “I have been a prospector and dealer for two decades, and cannot remember the last time a nugget over 100 ounces [2.8kg] has been found locally.”

He added that the anonymous prospector is a “person that really deserves it” and revealed that the man rushed home to tell his wife after finding it.

Mr Kent went on to say: “He is going to pay off a lot of bills and pay off his house - it’s a real life changer…It’s extremely significant as a mineral specimen. We are 162 years into a gold rush and Ballarat is still producing nuggets - it’s unheard of.”

Although gold currently sell for around £1,050 per ounce in Australia, nuggets over a kilogram are so rare that they sell at a premium.

The fact this particular nugget weighs in at a hefty 5.5kg will almost certainly make the premium significantly higher in this instance.