A YOUNG Irish dancer from Barrhead has claimed back-to-back victories in two competitions.

Mia Slicer, of McKelvie Crescent, is the new West of Scotland Irish dance champion in the under-seven age group with her performance at Ravenscraig Sports Centre on September 22.

And, at the weekend, she was back in competition at the All Scotland Championships at the Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow, facing off against dancers from Ireland, England and America and becoming the top-ranked Scottish dancer in her age group.

The seven-year-old, who has been Irish dancing for four years, is taught at the McLaughlin School of Irish Dancing in Glasgow.

Her mum Julie told the Barrhead News: “I danced at the same school from four to 14, so I took Mia along to try it out.

“For a while it was just something she did but, over the past year, she’s really come into her own and absolutely loves it.

“In previous competitions, she’s always finished second or third, but going into the West of Scotland Championships we thought she might pull it out the bag and she absolutely did.

“Then, to be the top Scot at the Open Championship is absolutely huge.”

Mum Julie and dad Robert were both cheering Mia on from the crowd, along with her younger sister, three-year-old Emme.

One other person who always got behind Mia was her grandmother Christine, who sadly passed away in July.

And Julie said a guardian angel sewed on Mia’s dress for the contest in memory of her grandmother acted as a lucky charm.

Julie said: “Mia was so close to my mum, who loved Irish dancing.

“She was just so proud Mia had taken to it. We sewed a wee guardian angel into Mia’s dress for the competition and we definitely think her granny was watching when she won.”

The P3 pupil at St Thomas’s Primary, who trains four nights a week, will now be heading to Newcastle to compete in the North East of England Championships at the weekend.