Ballymore Resources Limited (“Ballymore” or “the Company”) is pleased to announce that the Queensland Department of Resources has granted exploration licence, EPM 27918 (Mount Molloy) to Ballymore. EPM 27918 covers an area of approximately 78 square kilometres in the Hodgkinson Province of North Queensland and is located south of the town of Mount Molloy and 50km northwest of Cairns. Mount Molloy represents a major historic copper operation that mined a high-grade volcanogenic- hosted massive sulphide (“VHMS”) copper deposit similar in style to Sandfire Resources’ DeGrussa deposit in Western Australia and Revolver Resources’ Dianne deposit in North Queensland.
About Mount Molloy
Mount Molloy hosts stratiform copper-zinc mineralisation which occurs within an interbedded pyritic black shale and quartzite sequence that is 60-80m thick. The mine workings, and other pits and gossans in the local area occur along the outcropping prospective horizon. The massive sulphide zones contain copper and zinc in thicknesses up to 4m with lower grade stockwork mineralisation occurring in the footwall.
Mineralisation was first discovered at Mount Molloy in 1883 by Patrick Molloy, after whom the town of Mount Molloy was named. Initially, minor mining of oxidised ore took place until 1902. John Moffat of Irvinebank incorporated Mount Molloy into his mining and metals empire and built a smelter 3km away from the mine, close to the township of Mount Molloy, in 1904. The main mining period occurred from 1905 to 1907, when operations ceased due to falling copper prices. The mine was briefly re-worked by a syndicate in 1918 and again in 1941 to 1942.
The deepest shaft is reported to have reached 143m with ore zones assaying up to 20% copper with widths up to 4m. There was also a significant amount of high-grade zinc ore encountered, but this was not mined due to the lack of market at the time. Production figures are incomplete, although records suggest a total of 43,600 tons of ore was mined producing 3,900 tons of copper metal at 8.7% Cu1.
A number of smaller mines were operated during the same period within the EPM area to the north and south of the Mount Molloy mine with workings hosting copper and zinc ore. Unfortunately, very few records are available for these old workings. A number of small mining leases have also been held over the Mount Molloy mine area in the 1970’s and 1980’s but no further production has been reported.
The Project area also has potential to host tungsten mineralisation and other critical minerals. Tungsten mineralisation occurs discontinuously along the southwestern and western margin of the Permian Mount Carbine Granite and Mareeba Granite which occur between Mount Molloy and Mount Carbine. Mineralisation occurs in the form of wolfram with subordinate scheelite and is associated with quartz- feldspar pegmatite dykes and veins related to the emplacement of the Mareeba Granite. The main tungsten mine in the area is EQ Resources’ Mount Carbine deposit, located 25km northwest of Mount Molloy.
Ballymore has completed a compilation of historic data and a preliminary technical review. Modern exploration of the Mount Molloy area commenced in the 1950’s and work to date has generally focussed on the historic mine area. Prior work has included some mapping, geochemical sampling, geophysics surveys, shallow reverse circulation (“RC”) and diamond drilling.
Historic soil sampling has defined a north-northwest trending, 800m x 100m +200ppm Cu-in-soil anomaly with associated zinc, lead and gold. To date, soil sampling has only partially tested 1km of the prospective horizon and the soil anomaly remains open along strike to the northwest. Rock chip samples have reported significant copper-zinc-silver results including 16.6% Cu, 0.24% Zn and 38 g/t Ag. Open file aeromagnetic data for the EPM shows the Mount Molloy deposit lying on the edge of an aeromagnetic low which extends over 3km (Figure 3). IP anomalies have been defined over the mine area itself and over an area 500m to the north. In addition, EM surveys completed in the 1970’s defined a number of moderate EM anomalies which do not appear to have been tested by drilling.
Forty-one drill holes have historically tested the Mount Molloy mine area for 4,386m of drilling. Only 5 holes have exceeded 200m depth with the deepest hole being 279.5m deep (MM07DD02). Drilling has focussed on testing massive sulphide mineralisation at shallow depths around the historic mine workings and has not tested for potential mineralisation at depth or potential repetitions. Several holes were terminated prior to intersecting the mineralised horizon due to technical issues. A number of holes have reported significant drill intersections including 13m @ 1.2% Cu, 4.3% Zn, 34.6 g/t Ag and 0.33% Pb (NPDH- 5: 67 – 80m) including 4m @ 2.6% Cu, 5.9% Zn, 55.5 g/t Ag and 0.22% Pb (NPDH-5: 69 – 73m). Mineralisation appears to be plunging towards the north and remains poorly tested at depth (Figure 4).
Mount Molloy – Next Steps
Mount Molloy represents a major historic VHMS copper deposit with significant historic open cut and underground workings. Work completed to date has focussed on testing in the vicinity of the historic mine site and this area has only been tested to shallow depths. A number of geochemical and geophysical targets have been defined and remain untested by drilling. In addition, a large part of the 3 kilometre prospective corridor remains relatively untested.
Ballymore intends to undertake a detailed evaluation of the mineralised corridor on a regional scale as well as testing potential extensions to known mineralisation associated with the Mount Molloy mine. Planned work includes prospecting, mapping, rock chip sampling and a regional multi-element soil sampling program to test the mineralised corridor. An IP survey is also planned to test for blind extensions to the known mineralisation and define drilling targets in the near term.