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Mandalay Resources opens new dig at Costerfield mine

The first load of ore was taken from the Cuffley lode and a new monument was unveiled to celebrate the occasion.

BARBARA SUNGAILA March 29, 2014 4:05am

Retired Mandalay exploration manager Brian Cuffley, Greater Bendigo mayor Barry Lyons and Hunan Chenzhou Mining Group general manager Li Zhongping. Photo: submitter


Mandalay Resources’ Costerfield mine celebrated the first ore extracted from its new Cuffley seam last Tuesday.

Mandalay staff, government representatives, Chinese customers and community members were on hand to witness a larger-than-life ceremony when a brand new underground truck carrying Cuffley ore passed through a red ribbon to mark the event.

City of Greater Bendigo mayor Barry Lyons unveiled a plaque attached to a historic monument in the form of a winder sheave (the technical name for a hoist wheel) from the old Brunswick Mine.

The new ore body extends the Costerfield mine operations for at least three to four yearsand beyond if further exploration drilling is successful.

The Cuffley lode has been intersected 200m below ground level and, once fully developed, will produce about 12,000 tonnes of ore a month, yielding about 40,000 troy ounces (1.25 tonnes) of gold and 3000 tonnes of antimony year.

General manager Andre Booyzen said the discovery and development of this new ore body would secure the jobs of the 200 people who work at the mine.

‘‘The mine also spends about $40million in the local economy per year which is a very significant stimulus for local businesses,’’ he said.

‘‘The success of our exploration program also gives us confidence to continue to spend money in exploring the Costerfield area, which includes $4-$5 million for exploration in 2014.’’

The expansion of mine works has not been without controversy after increased groundwater flows resulted in Mandalay needing to develop its water management options.

The City of Greater Bendigo granted planning permission for evaporation ponds, known as the Splitters Creek facility, in November but this decision was challenged by residents.

The matter is scheduled to be heard at VCAT in mid-April.

In February, Mandalay said it was seeking EPA approval to install a reverse osmosis water treatment plant.

This process is still under way.

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