Northern Ireland has more geological diversity in 14,000 square
kilometres than any other place on earth. The Mineral Development Act
(Northern Ireland) of 1969 is a well-established mining code that
governs the extractive sector in the region, which includes over 160
active quarries, an underground salt mine and a former small open pit gold mine.
Part of the United Kingdom, Northern Ireland uses the pound sterling
and is self-governed by the Northern Ireland Executive and the Northern
Ireland Assembly based at Stormont in Belfast. Northern Ireland’s
population of approximately 1.8 million people live in six counties and
are largely employed in the public sector, manufacturing, real estate
and wholesale and retail trade. The government of Northern Ireland has made it a priority to attract investment and create additional employment in the country through organizations such as Invest NI.
The Curraghinalt Project is located in the counties of Tyrone and
Londonderry, and benefits from its proximity and access to regional
The Curraghinalt Deposit is accessible by a number of paved highways
and local roads, and is 127 kilometres from Belfast, an approximately
1.5 hour drive
Private roads and farm tracks provide access within the property
The nearby town of Omagh and the village of Gortin provide lodging and local labour
- A suitable power substation is located 27km away in Strabane
A Brief History of Gold in Ireland
Prehistoric Ireland is famed for its incredible gold artifacts.
Metalworking and mining for copper and gold in Ireland dates to the
Irish Bronze Age (approximately 2500 BC to around 700 BC), and artifacts
of prehistoric Irish goldsmithing are exhibited in the national museum
Gerard Boate was the first to record finding gold in the area of the Curraghinalt Project, writing in his Natural History of Ireland
in 1657 of nuggets found in the Moyola River, located northeast of
Curraghinalt. In the 1930s, a British company reported plans for
alluvial gold mining, but very little work appears to have occurred.
The Tellus Project
Funded by the Department of Enterprise Trade and Investment and the
Northern Ireland Programme for Building Sustainable Prosperity and
managed by the Geological Survey of Northern Ireland, the Tellus Project
is the most concentrated geological mapping project ever undertaken in
Northern Ireland. One of the most comprehensive regional data gathering
exercises in Europe, the Tellus Project conducted low-level airborne
geophysical surveys over 86,000 kilometres and collected nearly 30,000
soil, stream-sediment and stream-water samples for analysis.
The collated data from this project has produced new geochemical and
geophysical maps that will extend and deepen the knowledge of the
geology, soils, natural resources and environment of Northern Ireland.
This information supports the exploration for, and development of,
mineral and hydrocarbon resources, informs land-use planning and
provides a countrywide environmental baseline. It has also renewed
interest in mineral prospecting, and new prospecting permits for
precious and base metals have been issued as a result.
Fun Facts about Northern Ireland
Bushmills is the world’s oldest whiskey distillery
Titanic was built in Northern Ireland
The ejector-seat, portable heart defibrillator and pneumatic tire were all invented in Northern Ireland
Home to agricultural engineer and inventor Harry Ferguson
Short Bros, the world’s first aviation company, was based in Belfast (now Bombardier owned)
More than one-third of all U.S. presidents had ancestral origins in Northern Ireland