TIDMALBA

RNS Number : 0445T

Alba Mineral Resources PLC

22 November 2021

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Alba Mineral Resources plc

("Alba" or the "Company")

Dolgellau Gold Field Project Update

Significant Gold and Base Metal Grades Across Multiple Targets

Alba Mineral Resources plc (AIM: ALBA) is pleased to provide an update on regional exploration activities at its Dolgellau Gold Field Project ('DGF' or the 'Project') in Wales as well as an update on the Company's application to dewater the Llechfraith Shaft at the Clogau-St David's Gold Mine.

Key Points

Dolgellau Gold Field Exploration Project

-- Further exploration across a number of high-priority regional exploration targets in the DGF has resulted in a suite of substantial precious and base metal results

-- Multi-commodity mineralisation confirmed from sampling at Hafod Owen Prospect and Carndochan Gold Mine:

o Hafod Owen Prospect - in-situ gold mineralisation grading up to 1.5 g/t Au (with previous sampling grading up to 24.1 g/t Au) and spoil tip samples grading 0.353 g/t Au and 6.76% Cu)

o Carndochan Gold Mine - samples returned grades of up to 20.6 g/t Au, 27.1 g/t Ag and 1.175% Pb

   --      New regional exploration target identified, the Afon Gain Prospect: 

o Two historic trial mining sites sampled, with precious metal grades of up to 2.43 g/t gold (Au) & 33.7 g/t silver (Ag) and base metal grades of up to 3.96% copper (Cu), 4.25% lead (Pb) & 2.39% zinc (Zn).

-- Caerwych Prospect identified within new licence expansion, with copper grades of up to 2.92% Cu and structural gold targets identified for follow-up work.

Clogau-St David's Gold Mine - Water Discharge Application

-- Following recent constructive discussions with the regulatory authority, Alba is in the process of preparing certain supplementary information to enable a further consideration of the Company's application to dewater the Llechfraith Shaft.

Alba's Executive Chairman, George Frangeskides, commented:

"Our ongoing exploration programme at the Dolgellau Gold Field in Wales has not only yielded substantial precious metal grades, including 20.6 g/t gold and 27.1 g/t silver at the Carndochan Gold Mine, but, importantly, it has also generated strong base metal results, which greatly increase the Project's multi-commodity potential. With grades for high demand metals of up to 3.96% copper, 4.25% lead and 2.39% zinc at the newly identified Afon Gain Prospect, we look forward to continuing to advance this multifaceted UK project and quantifying its full potential."

"In other encouraging news, I am pleased to report on constructive discussions having been held with the regulatory authority on the matter of our application to dewater the Llechfraith Shaft at the Clogau Gold Mine. Our team is now working to provide updated submissions with a view to a further consideration of our application."

Dolgellau Gold Field Exploration Update

In the Company's RNS of 22 July 2021, we reported on a new regional gold target within our exploration licence area, close to Gwynfynydd, with grab samples grading up to 24 g/t Au. Our field geologists have since returned to that target, Hafod Owen, to conduct further sampling, have initiated field exploration at the former Carndochan Gold Mine, situated in the most easterly of our package of licence areas, and have confirmed the potential of a new target, Afon Gain, which shows significant potential for polymetallic mineralisation.

Following the recent grant to the Company of an additional licence area in the DGF (see our RNS of 20 September 2021), Alba's field team has also conducted field reconnaissance at the historic Caerwych mine site, situated in the new licence area, taking samples which have returned notable copper grades.

We report below on each of these developments, which not only re-emphasise the significant number of high-grade gold prospects within the DGF but also highlight the copper, lead and zinc potential of the region.

Hafod Owen Prospect

Alba has conducted follow-up field exploration at Hafod Owen after samples taken in May 2021 returned significant grades of up to 24.1 g/t Au. The 24.1 g/t sample was taken from a boulder close to historic mine workings in a major N-S valley. A thin vein (MHO-03) with a similar mineralogy was observed in outcrop in another N-S valley 300 m to the east of the original high-grade sample. This was sampled and assayed, returning 1.5 g/t Au, thereby confirming the potential for widespread gold mineralisation at Hafod Owen.

Assaying of an additional sample (MHO-04) taken from a historic mine waste tip associated with a possible N-S structure 250 m southwest of the 24.1 g/t Au sample returned grades of 0.363g/t Au as well as high-grade copper at 6.76 % Cu. This highlights the potential for polymetallic mineralisation in the lodes at Hafod Owen.

A sample (MHO-05) taken from an outcrop with visible quartz veining graded 0.487 g/t Au, confirming the presence of auriferous mineralising fluids close to the easternmost target structure identified by Alba. Additional samples were taken from road cutting outcrops, with sample MHO-09 assaying at 0.198 g/t Au, highlighting the presence of mineralising fluids in a quartz vein sub-parallel to an adjacent NNW-trending shear zone.

To date, outcrop sampling has shown the presence of elevated gold concentrations in relatively poorly mineralised bedrock, indicating auriferous hydrothermal fluid activity in the region. The vein samples previously taken from a spoil tip at the prospect (samples 802 and 803 in Table 1 which returned 6.53 g/t Au and 24.1 g/t Au respectively) demonstrate the potential for high-grade mineralisation at Hafod Owen, and the relatively poor outcrop exposure in this region leads the Company to believe that examples of these veins and the breccia mineralisation have remained hidden below superficial cover.

Alba's technical team is finalising an exploration strategy to unlock the significant potential of the Hafod Owen Prospect, with a view to identifying targets for drilling.

Carndochan Gold Mine

The Carndochan Gold Mine, the furthest east of all the notable historic gold mines in the region, was intermittently operated up until the early 20(th) Century, reportedly producing 2,643 oz Au from 6,956 tonnes of ore. The mine produced gold at an average grade of 11.88 g/t, as well as significant silver and lead credits. In addition to free-milling gold, the lode hosted galena shoots which were rich in gold and silver.

Alba's field work at the mine has involved collecting structural data to create an initial 3D model, as well as taking samples from a historical waste tip. Samples were cut on-site, revealing the presence of coarse galena and subordinate sphalerite and pyrite in the vein material.

Assay results have returned high-grade gold-silver, with significant zinc-lead credits. Notably, sample CCD-02 represents a good representation of the target mineralisation at Carndochan, displaying coarse aggregates of galena with sphalerite and pyrite grains. The sample (weighing 2.3 kg) returned grades of 20.6 g/t Au, 27.1 g/t Ag, 1.175 % Pb and 0.257 % Zn. Sample CCD-03 showed stronger sphalerite mineralisation, grading 1.63% Zn and 0.392 g/t Au.

The Carndochan deposit is considered to be underdeveloped, being untested both at depth and along strike of the existing workings.

Alba's technical team is currently evaluating the optimal strategy for taking this prospect forward, adding yet another brownfield exploration asset to Alba's significant portfolio in the DGF.

Afon Gain Prospect

Identified in Alba's previous work on geochemically prospective drainage basins as a possible area of interest (see our RNS of 22 July 2021), recent analysis of three historical stream sediment datasets has confirmed the prospectivity of two key drainage basins in the catchment of the Afon Gain. A field visit to the prospect involved ground-truthing two known mineral occurrences, which confirmed the presence of trial mining sites on mineralised quartz veins in and above the Clogau Formation, a shale unit which is a critical control on gold mineralisation at the Clogau St. David's Gold Mine and elsewhere in the DGF.

At the first locality, a surface trial was found to expose a 1.5 - 2 m thick vein system, which was observed to contain sulphide mineralisation. An in-situ sample taken from this vein graded 0.125 g/t Au, 9.83 g/t Ag and 0.872 % Cu. The vein trends ENE-WSW, and quickly disappears under thick overburden which is characteristic of the target region.

More extensive trial mine workings were found at a second locality, and samples were taken from spoil tips that were rich in heavily mineralised quartz. Sample AG-003 was taken from the largest spoil tip, and returned assays of 0.143 g/t Au, 33.7 g/t Ag, 1.115 % Cu, 4.25 % Pb and 2.39 % Zn, showing significant potential for polymetallic mineralisation. Samples were also taken from a second waste tip, with sample AG-004 assaying at 2.43 g/t Au, 15 g/t Ag and 1.22 % Cu, and AG-006 grading 1.6 g/t Au, 12.45 g/t Ag and 1.62 % Cu. Another sample was taken from a waste dump to the west of this site, where the worked lode had been displaced to the south by a cross-cutting fault. This sample graded 0.532 g/t Au, 21.2 g/t Ag and 3.96% Cu.

Both localities showed ENE-WSW striking veins with very similar mineralogy and vein textures, suggesting they formed as part of the same larger mineralised system. The Au-pathfinder geochemical characteristics of the veins suggest that the system has potential for gold-belt style mineralisation, especially in association with the Clogau Formation. Utilising modern exploration techniques to explore through thick overburden will enable the first concerted, in-depth exploration of the resource potential of this new prospect.

Caerwych Prospect

Following the grant of the north-west extension to Alba's licence areas over the DGF, Alba has conducted field reconnaissance at the historic Caerwych mine site. The focus of historic production at Caerwych is understood to have been on base metals, possibly prior to the discovery of gold at Cwmheisian in the 1840s. The lode at Caerwych showed some signs of chalcopyrite and pyrite mineralisation, particularly in association with wall-rock contacts. While seven samples taken by Alba from outcropping mineralisation and spoil tips showed no significant gold grades, samples CRW-01 and CRW-03 showed notable copper grades of 1.335 % Cu and 2.92 % Cu respectively.

The Caerwych lode is hosted by the sedimentary rocks of the lower Gamlan Formation, underlying the economic package in which gold mineralisation is found elsewhere in the DGF. However, the lode also lies within a notable topographic lineament that visibly extends for several kilometres to the NE and is thought to cross through the Clogau Shales and intrusive units, both critical controls on ore formation at Clogau St. David's. Future work at Caerwych will focus on where this lineament and other sub-parallel NE-SW structures intersect the Clogau Shales, in order to assess whether these structures have the potential to host the high-grade mineralisation found elsewhere in the DGF.

Table 1 : Rock sample assay grades for Alba's regional exploration samples showing Au, Ag, Cu, Pb and Zn grades. Significant grades highlighted in bold. Previously reported assays (802-806) shown in italics. (NB: 1 ppm is equal to 1 g/t, and 10,000 ppm equals 1 wt.%)

 
  Sample    Location   Sample Type                          Assay Grades (ppm) 
    No.      ID 
           ---------  ------------------------- 
                                                     Au      Ag        Cu      Pb      Zn 
           ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
 Hafod Owen 
      802   ND-01      Tree Root Boulder           6.53    2.61      42.4    73.4       2 
      803   ND-02      Tree Root Boulder           24.1    9.29       308   181.5      10 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
      804   CAD-01     In-situ Vein               0.069    0.11       3.7     7.7       3 
      805   CAD-02     In-situ Vein               0.041    0.06       2.1     5.4       2 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
      806   MHO-01     Rock Outcrop                3.82     7.1        46    46.9    1390 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
      834   MHO-02     In-situ Qz Vein            0.021    0.07      33.3     3.2       6 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
                       In-situ veining, 
                        sulphide mineralisation 
      835   MHO-03      and alteration              1.5    1.53       690     7.4      23 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
      836   MHO-04     Qz Dump, no outcrop        0.363    6.81     67600      45      32 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
                       In-situ vein and 
      837   MHO-05      alteration halo           0.487    2.34       187    79.9      51 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
                       In-situ Qz Vein, 
      838   MHO-06      Shear Zone                0.002    0.04      56.8     1.9      23 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       68   MHO-07     In-situ Breccia            0.064    0.31      1890     5.7      11 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       70   MHO-08     In-situ Qz Vein            0.039     0.2       353     8.6      22 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       71   MHO-09     In-situ Qz Vein            0.198    0.38      82.4    48.5       6 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
                       Shear zone hosting 
                        sulphide rich 
       72   MHO-10      vein                      0.064    0.38      1730    13.2      13 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       73   MHO-11     Boulder                    0.123    0.51        52    28.8      59 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
 Afon Gain 
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 
      839   AG_001     Spoil Heap                 0.006    0.57      1420    13.1      11 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
      840   AG_002     In-Situ Vein               0.125    9.83      8720     795     242 
 
      841   AG_003     Spoil Tip                  0.143    33.7     11150   42500   23900 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
      842   AG_004     Spoil Tip                   2.43      15     12200     159     383 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
      843   AG_005     In-situ Vein                0.01     1.2       727   168.5     135 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       81   AG_006     Spoil Tip                   1.62   12.45      8630   143.5     266 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       82   AG_007     Spoil Tip                  0.532    21.2     39600    28.5     400 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       83   AG_008     In-situ Vein               0.005    0.45       423     6.0      16 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
 Caerwych 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       74   CRW-01     Spoil Heap                 0.018    1.73     13350    96.4     159 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       75   CRW-02     Spoil Heap                 0.016    4.63      2790     321     442 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       76   CRW-03     Spoil Heap                 0.037    4.88     29200    31.8      50 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
                       In-situ Hanging 
       77   CRW-04      Wall                      0.009    1.69      2170    30.6     604 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       78   CRW-05     In-situ Qz Vein            0.009    0.33      1080     4.4     171 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       79   CRW-06     In-situ Qz Vein            0.004    0.28       805     109      42 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       80   CRW-07     In-situ Qz Vein            0.003    5.04       387    2530    4320 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
 Carndochan Gold Mine 
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 
       84   CCD-01     Spoil Heap                 0.001    22.2       517    4390     552 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
       85   CCD-02     Spoil Heap                  20.6    27.1    38.1     11750    2570 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  ------  --------  ------ 
       86   CCD-03     Spoil Heap                 0.392    5.65      21.4    1780   16250 
---------  ---------  -------------------------  ------  ------  --------  ------  ------ 
 
 

Clogau-St David's Gold Mine - Update on Water Discharge Application

The Company is pleased to provide an update further to the announcement on 1 November 2021, which reported that Natural Resources Wales ("NRW") had given notice of its refusal of the Company's application requesting the grant of an environmental permit for a water discharge activity to allow treated mine water from the Llechfraith Shaft to discharge to the River Cwm-Llechen.

Subsequent constructive discussions between Alba management and NRW have clarified the key points which led to the refusal decision. The Company is therefore working to update its submissions to provide certain additional information, with a view to a further consideration of the Company's application rather than the Company having to go through a formal appeal process. Further material updates will be provided as and when they are available.

This announcement contains inside information for the purposes of the UK Market Abuse Regulation and the Directors of the Company are responsible for the release of this announcement.

Glossary

Mineralisation: Any single mineral or combination of minerals occurring in a mass, or deposit, of economic interest. The term is intended to cover all forms in which mineralisation might occur, whether by class of deposit, mode of occurrence, genesis or composition.

Quartz vein: A sheet-like body consisting predominantly of the mineral quartz, which is known to host gold mineralisation in the Dolgellau Gold Belt.

Panned Drainage Sample: A sample of sediment collected from a river that has been panned to produce a heavy mineral concentrate that can then be sent for analytical assay.

Geochemical Anomaly: A sample that contains a notably high concentration of an element (in this case Gold) that stands out from the concentrations in other samples in a campaign.

Mineral abbreviations

   Au:                                  Gold 
   Ag:                                    Silver 
   Cu:                                    Copper 
   Pb:                                    Lead 
   Zn:                                    Zinc 

This announcement contains inside information for the purposes of the UK Market Abuse Regulation and the Directors of the Company are responsible for the release of this announcement.

ENDS

For further information, please visit www.albamineralresources.com or contact:

Alba Mineral Resources plc

   George Frangeskides, Executive Chairman                              +44 20 3950 0725 

SPARK Advisory Partners Limited (Nomad)

   Andrew Emmott                                                                 +44 20 3368 3555 

ETX Capital (Broker)

   Thomas Smith                                                                   +44 20 7392 1494 

St Brides Partners (Financial PR)

   Isabel de Salis / Catherine Leftley                                alba@stbridespartners.co.uk 

Forward Looking Statements

This announcement contains forward-looking statements relating to expected or anticipated future events and anticipated results that are forward-looking in nature and, as a result, are subject to certain risks and uncertainties, such as general economic, market and business conditions, competition for qualified staff, the regulatory process and actions, technical issues, new legislation, uncertainties resulting from potential delays or changes in plans, uncertainties resulting from working in a new political jurisdiction, uncertainties regarding the results of exploration, uncertainties regarding the timing and granting of prospecting rights, uncertainties regarding the timing and granting of regulatory and other third party consents and approvals, uncertainties regarding the Company's or any third party's ability to execute and implement future plans, and the occurrence of unexpected events.

Without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, uncertainties also exist in connection with the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic which may result in further lockdown measures and restrictions being imposed by Governments and other competent regulatory bodies and agencies from time to time in response to the pandemic, which measures and restrictions may prevent or inhibit the Company from executing its work activities according to the timelines set out in this announcement or indeed from executing its work activities at all. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic may also affect the Company's ability to execute its work activities due to personnel and contractors testing positive for COVID-19 or otherwise being required to self-isolate from time to time.

Actual results achieved may vary from the information provided herein as a result of numerous known and unknown risks and uncertainties and other factors.

All activities and timelines in this announcement are subject to the timely receipt of regulatory and other third-party consents and to the timely availability of contractors, plant and equipment.

Competent Person Declaration

The information in this release that relates to Exploration Results has been reviewed by Mr Mark Austin. Mr Austin is a member of SACNASP (Reg. No. 400235/06), Fellow of The Geological Society and Fellow of the Geological Society of South Africa. He has a B.Sc. Honours in Geology with 38 years' experience.

Mark Austin has sufficient experience that is relevant to the style of mineralisation and type of deposit under consideration and to the activity being undertaken to qualify as a Competent Person as defined in the 2012 Edition of the 'Australasian Code for Reporting of Exploration targets, Exploration Results, Mineral Resources and Ore Reserves', also known as the JORC Code. The JORC code is a national reporting organisation that is aligned with CRIRSCO. Mr Austin consents to the inclusion in the announcement of the matters based on his information in the form and context in which they appear.

 
 
 

Alba's Projects and Investments

 
 Mining Projects Operated        Location     Ownership 
  by Alba 
 Clogau (gold)                   Wales        90% 
                                -----------  ---------- 
 Dolgellau Gold Exploration 
  (gold)                         Wales        90-100% 
                                -----------  ---------- 
 Gwynfynydd (gold)               Wales        100% 
                                -----------  ---------- 
 Limerick (zinc-lead)            Ireland      100% 
                                -----------  ---------- 
 Investments Held by Alba        Location     Ownership 
                                -----------  ---------- 
 GreenRoc Mining Plc (mining)    Greenland    54% 
                                -----------  ---------- 
 Horse Hill (oil)                England      11.765% 
                                -----------  ---------- 
 

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