Firm aims to re-open Tyn­drum gold mine

The Oban Times - - News -

PROSPECTORS ap­ply­ing to re-open Conon­ish’s un­der­ground gold mine say it could cre­ate up to 60 jobs.

Scot­gold Re­sources Ltd, based in Up­per Tyn­drum Sta­tion, is scop­ing for a pro­posed gold mine 3km south-west of Tyn­drum, ac­cord­ing to a pre-ap­pli­ca­tion sub­mit­ted to the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs Na­tional Park Author­ity.

Ex­trac­tion and pro­cess­ing op­er­a­tions at Conon­ish gold mine were orig­i­nally permitted in 1996, and sub­se­quently in 2012 and 2015. This re­vised ap­pli­ca­tion, with re­designed phas­ing and tail­ing, is in­tended to bring fi­nan­cial and en­vi­ron­men­tal ben­e­fits. Since May 2016, Scot­gold has been pro­duc­ing the pre­cious metal above ground via its Bulk Pro­cess­ing Trial, which has pro­cessed 2,400 tonnes of ore stock­piled from the 1980s.

Its first ounce of Scot­tish gold, the first to be mined com­mer­cially in Scot­land from Conon­ish gold and sil­ver mine, sold for £21,000 at an auc­tion in Ed­in­burgh.

Twelve ‘rounds’ of gold an ounce in weight, and each stamped with the Scot­tish Gold Mark of the stag’s head, sold for an av­er­age price of £4,557.9 per ounce.

How­ever, the ore stock­pile is due to be ex­hausted by the end of the year, and the min­ing firm now hopes it can ex­tract 560,000 tonnes of ore from an un­der­ground quartz vein car­ry­ing gold and sil­ver.

‘The gold-bear­ing ore will be ex­tracted us­ing stan­dard un­der­ground drill and blast meth­ods,’ Scot­gold’s pre-ap­pli­ca­tion states.

‘The min­ing sched­ule is hoped to start in April 2018, with the first ore avail­able in 2018. It is pro­posed to ap­ply for a mine life of 16 years. It may be pos­si­ble to re­duce this to around 10 years.’

Scot­tish gold is ex­pected to add a 10 per cent pre­mium.

Scot­gold said: ‘The mine will pro­vide em­ploy­ment for around 50 to 60 peo­ple, the ma­jor­ity of whom will be sourced from the lo­cal area, with the ex­cep­tion of around 13 spe­cial­ist po­si­tions.

‘Conon­ish mine uses clean, mod­ern meth­ods to re­cover gold: there will be no mer­cury or cyanide at the pro­ject.

‘In­stead, a grav­ity and flota­tion method sep­a­rates the gold from the host quartz. It is vi­tal that the clear streams and rivers of the High­lands re­main un­con­tam­i­nated.’

A pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion will be held in Tyn­drum Vil­lage Hall on May 24 from 10.30am to 8.30pm.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.