The North Pennine Orefield
The North Pennine Orefield is the second largest area of carbonate-hosted lead-zinc mineralisation in the British Isles after the Irish Midland Orefield, with a long history of mining for lead, zinc, barite plus witherite, fluorite and iron ore. The North Pennine Orefield covers an area of approximately 1,500 square kilometres and is geologically comparable to the Irish Midland Orefield.
Buchans, through its wholly owned subsidiary Minco Mining Limited, has entered into various agreements, licences and options with certain owners of mineral rights in the North Pennine Orefield located in the counties of Cumbria, Northumberland and Durham in northern England.
Minco’s exploration project in the northern Pennines area, operated through its wholly owned subsidiary Minco Mining Limited, is centered on a 3.5 by 2.5 kilometre area in the vicinity of the village of Nentheads, the most prolific area of past production within the Pennines Orefield which covers a total area of approximately 350 square miles in Cumbria, Northumberland and Durham counties. Between late 2012 until the first quarter of 2015, a total of 7,555 metres in 31 holes were drilled. Twenty-five exploration drill holes were sited to test the Great Limestone and six holes tested the deeper basal succession.
Minco’s 2012-2015 drill programme has established a significant stratiform component to the mineralisation within the Great Limestone which had not been previously recognized. Intersections within the Great Limestone has demonstrated the potential for significant stratiform mineralisation adjacent to historic workings. The presence of small “flats” (stratiform stopes) on historic mine plans has proven indicative of laterally extensive stratiform replacement within the Great Limestone, with perhaps eighty percent remaining in place. Fifteen kilometres of these mineralised structures have been outlined by previous mining with flats recorded adjacent to 5.5 kilometres, all of which has potential for stratiform mineralisation.
The intersections of reasonable widths of lead and zinc mineralization at three different levels in two holes drilled on the Whitewood-Barneycraig-Williams fault/vein structure in Northumberland in early 2015, are considered very positive results and indicate the mineral potential of this large Whitewood-Barneycraig-Williams fault/vein structure which was previously demonstrated by historic mining to be mineralized over a strike length of 3.5 kilometres.
The extent of the stratiform mineralisation discovered by Minco in the Great Limestone to date is encouraging. Similar mineralisation within the thicker basal succession would be economically very significant.
A second phase of drilling is planned, subject to conclusion of land access agreements, to further explore the potential within both the Great Limestone and basal succession with the primary target for both being the Barneycraig-Whitewood fault complex.
Minco Mining is negotiating extensions or amendments to certain of the exploration licences and option agreements, and expects to conclude the various Option Agreements in due course.
Through a wholly-owned subsidiary, Buchans Resources has entered into agreements with a number of mineral rights and surface rights owners. The Company is in discussion with additional mineral rights and surface rights owners to add further exploration rights located in other parts of the North Pennine Orefield.