After three days of intense practical competition at The Skills Show at the NEC in Birmingham, SummitSkills crowned its SkillPLUMB and SkillPIPE 2012 champions.

Competitors battled it out alongside some 60 other skills competitions, which showcased the best up and coming talent across a range of occupations.

The SkillPLUMB finalists’ task was to fit a simulated domestic central heating system, a wash basin, hot and cold shower pipework and plastic waste pipework to a simulated WC.

Andrew Patton beat nine other competitors to take the gold medal for his high scores in bend and joint quality, bend angles and clearances, plumb and level pipework and appliances, soundness testing, material usage and health and safety.

The SkillPIPE finalists’ task was to cut, thread, weld and install pipework with temperature controls, commissioning valves and a circulating pump, all to a high standard and tight specification. The installation was then scrutinised and pressure tested by industry experts who marked the competitors on their work.

Patrick O’Leary from N G Bailey took the title, having impressed the judges who scored him highly against strict criteria including measuring and marking out, welding quality, threading quality, pipework installation, material usage, overall presentation, and health and safety.