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BEACONSFIELD

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The disaster prone Beaconsfield gold mine in Tasmania finished production in mid 2012 with the processing bacterial oxidation plant altered to allow it to remain operational using the carbon-in- leach (CIL) gold production method. This allowed the processing plant to treat the Lefroy tailings up until February 2013. The Lefroy tailings added 100,000 tonnes of ore at a gold grade of 1.4 grams per tonne to the owners bottom line before closing up shop permanently.

Mine Ownership Issue Sorted out in April 2007

Beaconsfield mine ownership was finally consolidated in April 2007 giving BCD Resources NL (formally Allstate Explorations NL) 100 percent ownership of the ailing mine in its final years. BCD was also the mine manager at the time of closure.

Old Discarded Tailings Examined for Possible Recovery

Tailings from the Beaconsfield mine operations between 1877 and 1914 were dumped in an arm of the Tamar River Estuary at a place called Middle Arm and in August 2012, BCD Resources were given a licence to carry out exploration of the area. Previous recovery of gold from the tailings had already been carried out between 1985 and 1988 by Golconda Resources. BCD undertook a sampling program to estimate the amount of gold remaining in the tailings and this was completed in December 2012. Metallurgical testing is now being carried out to help in determining the viability of extracting and treating the remaining tailings before finally de-commissioning the Beaconsfield CIL plant.

Lefroy Mine Extended Beaconsfield CIL Plant Usage for a Further 12 Months

BCD Resources NL recovered around 906,000 ounces of gold from the Beaconsfield Mine since acquiring ownership in September 1999. The Lefroy project extended gold production to the end of 2012 but further production beyond that will rely entirely on the findings of the feasibility study regarding the Middle Arm tailings.

Pinnafore Deposit Deemed Uneconomical

The company does have an option in developing the Pinafore gold deposit as an open pit just. This deposit is only 40 kilometres away from the Beaconsfield plant but despite it having an inferred resource of 810,000 tonnes showing 1.5 grams per tonne (38,000 ounces of gold) to a depth of 100 feet below the surface it is not considered economically viable at this stage.

Beaconsfield Gold Mine now a Mining Museum

The Beaconsfield underground mine has now been developed as a mining museum with one of its prime displays being the incredible rescue of two miners, Todd Russell and Brant Webb, following a rockfall at the mine in 2006, in which another miner drastically lost his life. The exhibition is in honour of the rescuers and the considerable innovation that was employed in ensuring the two men's rescue 950 metres below the surface. The exhibition also relates how the community pulled together during the crisis and how they reacted to the media influx. A simulation of the rock fall at the museum gives visitors an indication of the experience the two men suffered during their entombment underground for a period of two weeks before they were finally brought to the surface.

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