ECR is a mineral exploration and development company, incorporated in the UK.

ECR’s wholly owned Australian subsidiary Mercator Gold Australia (MGA) has agreed to acquire 100% ownership of the Avoca and Bailieston gold projects in Victoria, Australia. Mercator Gold Australia is estimated to have tax losses of approximately AUD 66M as at 30 June 2015, which may be available, subject to certain conditions (as described in ECR’s announcement dated 4 December 2014), to reduce MGA’s future taxable profits.

ECR has the right to earn a 50% interest in the Danglay epithermal gold project in the Philippines. Danglay is an advanced exploration project located in a prolific gold and copper mining district in the north of the Philippines. An NI43-101 technical report was completed in respect of the Danglay project in December 2015, and is available for download from ECR’s website.

ECR’s wholly owned subsidiary Ochre Mining has a 100% interest in the SLM gold project in La Rioja Province, Argentina. Exploration at SLM has focused on identifying small tonnage mesothermal gold deposits which may be suitable for relatively near term production.

 

ECR shares are listed on the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange with the symbol ECR.

AIM: ECR

US OTC: MTGDY

 

ECR MINERALS plc
(“ECR Minerals”, “ECR” or the “Company”)

 

 

LONDON: 9 NOVEMBER 2016 - The directors of ECR Minerals plc (the “Board”) are pleased to provide the following update on the Company’s activities in Victoria, Australia.  The Company has decided to prioritise drilling of selected targets at ECR’s wholly owned Avoca and Bailieston gold projects.  This decision has been made by the Board following recent site inspections by Ivor Jones, a senior Australian consultant geologist who has recently joined ECR as an executive director, in company with Craig Brown, ECR’s CEO.  The purpose of these visits was to re-evaluate the Company’s strategy for the Victoria projects and confirm the best route forward, with the objective of generating value for ECR shareholders.

 

Highlights:

 

  • Proposed reverse circulation drilling programme of approximately 550 metres to test prospects within the Byron area at the Bailieston project (EL5433)
  • Bailieston programme anticipated to commence by early 2017
  • Re-evaluation of the exploration potential at Avoca – now targeting nine high-grade hard-rock targets
  • Continuing to progress applications for two new Exploration Licences in Victoria

 

Craig Brown, Chief Executive Officer of ECR, commented:

 

“Having recently visited the Avoca and Bailieston projects, I was impressed by the ease of access to the prospects, the obvious indications of significant historical mining activity, and the continued high level of interest and activity in the Victorian gold mining sector. This impression has been further reinforced by the recently announced merger between Newmarket Gold and Kirkland Lake Gold; the former has two operating gold mines in Victoria, including the Fosterville mine, which is located approximately 30 kilometres away from ECR’s Bailieston project.

 

“Given these positive indications and the historical dataset in our possession, we have decided to carry out a drilling programme at selected targets at both Avoca and Bailieston to advance these projects.

 

“We look forward to providing further updates as activities progress.”

 

Bailieston project (EL5433)

After a re-evaluation of all prospects within EL5433, the main Byron mine environs remain a high priority target.  ECR intends to complete a reverse circulation (RC) drilling programme of approximately 550 metres to test the most significant prospects within the Byron area.  An approved Work Plan is in place for drilling of these prospects, and one further necessary permit has been applied for.  ECR anticipates that drilling at Bailieston will begin by early 2017,subject to receipt of the permit.

 

During its re-evaluation of the exploration potential at Bailieston, ECR has identified three high priority hard-rock drilling targets:

 

  • Below the old Byron shaft workings into a zone interpreted to be the extension of the previously mined high-grade reef.
  • West of the Byron shaft with a view to intersecting high-grade mineralisation that was identified during historical underground mining, but never exploited. 
  • The high-grade Maori mineralisation encountered by historical drilling.

 

Significant historical (1980s) drill and trench intercepts from the Byron area are tabulated below.

 

 Hole ID

From (m)

To (m)

Length (m)

Au (g/t)

Reef

Type

BLP126

40

43

3

13.80

Scoulars North

Drill RC

BLP136

44

46

2

17.16

Maori

Drill RC

BLP140

35

38

3

14.74

Byron

Drill RC

BLP181

24

54

30

0.75

Dan Genders

Drill RC

TR14

138

162

24

0.56

Scoulars South

Trench

  

The information in the table above is historical and therefore indicative only.  For more information, shareholders are encouraged to refer to the competent person’s report completed for ECR in relation to the Avoca and Bailieston projects which is available for download from the Company’s website (www.ecrminerals.com).  

 

Avoca project (EL5387)

ECR has revised its immediate aims in relation to the Avoca project.  The Company’s immediate aims                                                    are now to assess:

 

  • Hard-rock, mesothermal quartz vein gold deposits as initially identified by the presence of 39 known historical hard-rock workings.
  • Deep lead (buried alluvial) gold deposits which were too deep to be reached by historical surface alluvial workings and which have not been mined by the larger underground operations targeting the deep leads.  EL5387 contains at least 33 known historic alluvial workings (including surface workings), and at least 14 old shafts for underground access to the deep leads.

 

Whilst ECR is at an early stage of its re-evaluation of the exploration potential at Avoca, nine high priority hard-rock targets have been identified, along with one deep lead that the Company considers a promising target.

 

Initially ECR will focus its exploration efforts on the hard-rock targets, with the highest ranked target being the mineralisation near the old Pyrenees mine.  The Pyrenees reef has never been drilled, but its previous production is at least 16,199 tonnes yielding 16,602oz, with bonanza grades mined in the near surface workings (2,920 tonnes for 7,805oz to 48 metres depth).  These production figures do not include hand crushed gold rich material.  Drill holes will be placed around the old workings to test for down-plunge (along strike) mineralisation, repetitions and other un-mined mineralisation sections below the near surface bonanza grade zones.  Old mine plans show certain sections were not explored or mined.  The priority deep lead was identified historically by limited drilling, but will not be targeted by drilling in this phase.

 

A Work Plan is being prepared for the proposed drilling at the Avoca project, and will need to be approved by the Victorian authorities before drilling can begin.

 

 

Pending EL applications

ECR’s 100% owned Australian subsidiary Mercator Gold Australia Pty Ltd is continuing to progress applications for two new Exploration Licences in Victoria.  One new licence area is in the vicinity of the Avoca project, and the other in the vicinity of the Bailieston project. 

 

Market Abuse Regulations (EU) No. 596/2014 

The information contained within this announcement is deemed by the Company to constitute inside information as stipulated under the Market Abuse Regulations (EU) No. 596/2014 (MAR). Upon the publication of this announcement via Regulatory Information Service (RIS), this inside information is now considered to be in the public domain.

 

Review of Announcement by Qualified Person

This announcement has been reviewed by William (Bill) Howell BSc (Hons), FAusIMM, FSEG, ECR’s Non-Executive Chairman. Mr Howell is a geologist with 49 years of experience in the minerals industry, and is a Qualified Person as that term is defined by the AIM Note for Mining, Oil and Gas Companies.

 

ABOUT ECR

ECR is a mineral exploration and development company.  ECR’s wholly owned Australian subsidiary Mercator Gold Australia has acquired 100% ownership of the Avoca and Bailieston gold projects in Victoria, Australia.  ECR has earned a 25% interest in the Danglay epithermal gold project, an advanced exploration project located in a prolific gold and copper mining district in the north of the Philippines.  An NI43-101 technical report was completed in respect of the Danglay project in December 2015, and is available for download from ECR’s website. 

 

ECR’s wholly owned subsidiary Ochre Mining has a 100% interest in the SLM gold project in La Rioja, Argentina.  Exploration at SLM has focused on identifying small tonnage mesothermal gold deposits which may be suitable for relatively near term production.

 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT:

 

ECR Minerals plc

Tel: +44 (0)20 7929 1010

William (Bill) Howell, Non-Executive Chairman

 

Craig Brown, Director & CEO

 

 

 

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Website:  www.ecrminerals.com

 

 

 

Cairn Financial Advisers LLP

Tel: +44 (0)20 7 213 0880

Nominated Adviser

 

Emma Earl / Jo Turner

 

 

 

Optiva Securities Ltd

Tel: +44 (0)203 137 1902

Joint Broker

 

Graeme Dickson / Jeremy King

 

 

 

Vicarage Capital Ltd

Tel: +44 (0)20 3651 2910

Joint Broker

 

Rupert Williams / Jeremy Woodgate

 

 

 

Blytheweigh

Tel: +44 (0)20 7138 3204

Public Relations

 

Tim Blythe / Camilla Horsfall / Nick Elwes

 

 

 

FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS

This announcement may include forward looking statements.  Such statements may be subject to numerous known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from current expectations.  There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate and therefore actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements.  Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward looking statements.  Any forward-looking statements contained herein speak only as of the date hereof (unless stated otherwise) and, except as may be required by applicable laws or regulations (including the AIM Rules for Companies), the Company disclaims any obligation to update or modify such forward-looking statements because of new information, future events or for any other reason.