AN IRISH EXPLORATION company is hoping to strike gold in areas around the south-east of the country after announcing a joint venture with a Canadian exploration company.
Connemara Mining has linked up with Hendrick Resources, a Canadian exploration company, to mine for gold in what it calls the Mine River Licence Block – an area around the Tombreen and Knocknalour regions which is said to be prospective for both base metal and gold mineralisation.
The company says that “abundant mineralised float samples” with gold results up to 52.18 grammes per tonne have been found on the licence block, particularly around the Tombreen and Knocknalour regions on the Wicklow-Wexford border.
According to Connemara Mining the area of around 130 square kilometres is known to have significant gold occurrences in the rocks and the rivers.
The deal is potentially worth a €1million to Connemara with Hendrick set to spend €500,000 to earn a 50 per cent interest in the licences and with an option to spend a further €500,000 to increase its stake to 75 per cent of the joint venture.
Exploration is set to begin immediately with geophysics and geochemistry tests to be carried before subsequent drill testing gets underway.
“We are delighted with this joint venture,” John Teeling, Chairman of Connemara Mining, said. “For over 200 years explorers have sought the source of the Avoca gold which led to the 1796 gold rush.”
Of the collaboration with the Canadian company Hendrick, he added: “Hendrick is of the opinion that a commercial gold deposit remains to be found in south-east Ireland. This is a view long held by the founders of Connemara.
“A fresh experienced eye and the application of new and improved exploration techniques, combined with our extensive database offers exciting prospects.”
The company, whose principle interest is in zinc and gold exploration, made what it said was significant discovery of zinc around the Stonepark area of Limerick in 2007.