Cornish Tin Mines


Active member
gus horsley said:
whitelackington said:
whitelackington said:
There is such terrific demand for natural resources that Cornish tin Mines may start to re-open

Just heard,
just that,
on Radio 4,
There is such terrific World demand that South Crofty WILL re-open for full on production in two years time,
already several people working underground clearing collapses etc.
They claimed they had enough tin for a hundred years!

I think the best approach to this news would be one of cautious optimism.  I was involved in the heady days of the 1970s tin mining "boom" in Cornwall.  By 1985 it was all over.  I can't help but think that history will repeat itself, as it already has several times in the 20th century.  Good luck to them though.

Commodities in general are in increasing demand at the mo, as money previously invested in property drifts out (due to failing confidence)




Progress towards commercial tin production at the South Crofty tin mine in Cornwall will be accelerated following the formation today (November 2) of a new mining company.

Western United Mines Limited is a newly formed company which will own and operate the South Crofty tin mine. Baseresult Holdings Ltd, which bought South Crofty in 2001, is the majority shareholder in Western United Mines Ltd alongside Cassiterite LP, an investment vehicle that is acting for, amongst others, Galena Asset Management Ltd., a subsidiary of global commodity trader Trafigura Beheer.

The move, which formally takes effect on Friday 2 November 2007, will boost the economy of the Camborne, Pool, Redruth area of Cornwall which suffered when South Crofty, the county?s last working tin mine, closed in 1998. With new investment, management expertise and experience at board level, the work to resume tin production over the next two years will play a key role in local regeneration.

In excess of ?3.5 million will be spent by June 2008 on continuing the mine development. Tunnelling and exploration drilling activities begun by Baseresult earlier this year will continue with this injection of fresh capital bringing the total investment by that date to ?9 million. The further ?50 million of investment required by the time the mine starts production, which is projected for the end of 2009, has been earmarked. Staffing levels have already increased from 17 to 26 and, by July 2008, that figure is expected to have risen to 35 full-time employees.

Local businesses have already been benefiting from the renewed activity at South Crofty. Orders worth more than ?300,000 have been placed locally ? including one for a drilling machine that is being built by a Camborne firm, Drillserve Ltd. That figure is set to increase as more equipment is purchased over the next few months.

Christopher Hall, an experienced mining finance and investment specialist, is the independent non-executive chairman of the Western United Mines board.  Currently mining adviser to Grant Thornton LLP, Mr Hall?s 30 year career has spanned mine geology, mining share analysis, specialist fund management, mergers and acquisitions, establishment and management of an AIM listed mining finance company and wide-ranging consultancy.

Christopher Hall said: ?I am delighted to renew my association with South Crofty after some 20 years.  The mine always suffered from a shortage of investment in exploration in the past. The vision of Baseresult, the financial strength and market expertise of its new partner Galena, and the undeveloped potential of the South Crofty tin deposits look like a winning combination.  I look forward to helping to guide the project back into production for the benefit of the shareholders, the workforce and the Cornish economy.?

The board?s executive members are Kevin Williams, Managing Director of Mine Operations, Alan Shoesmith, Acting Chief Executive Officer and Financial Director, and David Stone, Director of Engineering.  The executive members previously held similar positions on the board of Baseresult Holdings Ltd.

Kevin Williams said: ?When we bought South Crofty in 2001 we made our commitment to redeveloping it as a working tin mine very clear. Experience tells us that we should be able to resume full tin production and that there is potential for a mining life of eighty years.  The tin price has moved ahead strongly since the purchase and we are delighted that we pressed ahead with our plans. 

?Today?s events effectively underwrite the mine?s funding for the future.  We have the expertise, we have the passion and now we have added the financial strength of our new partner to the picture. This should be seen as a great day ? not just for Cornwall but also for UK industry.?

The board?s remaining non-executive members are Mark Thompson, Chief Investment Officer with Galena Asset Management, a subsidiary of Trafigura Beheer b.v, one of the world?s largest international commodity traders, and Gerard Lynch, Galena Asset Management?s Finance Officer.

Mr Thompson said: ?South Crofty closed in 1998 when the tin price was less than a third of the current level. New uses for tin, particularly in lead-free solder, will keep prices buoyant for many years to come and make an investment in tin mining a very attractive proposition. The experience of the management and the support for mining from the local community have been key in our decision to make a long term commitment to this project.?

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gus horsley

New member
Planning permission was granted to work hemerdon in the mid 1980s, just before the tin/tungsten price crashed.  the company who did all the prospecting, Amax Hemerdon Ltd, estimated that the mine could produce 4000tons of tungsten and tin per year for 20 years.  This would necessitate the removal of about 45 million tons of rock.

Another potential reopening to look out for is Redmoor Mine near Callington where, in about 1980, a large deposit of low-grade tin was discovered by soil sampling methods and later drilled to ascertain its extent.  There are old workings in the immediate vicinity, one of which leads into unstable stopes on a lead-filled crosscourse, but they're not associated with the tin deposit.  It was due to start production but the price crash put paid to it at the time.


New member
Hello Gus,
I suppose in our present economy
just borrowing the money may prove difficult,
apparently banks are now reluctant to lend out money!

gus horsley

New member
There's a lot of foreign investment in the SW.  the company that want to reopen Hemerdon are Australian, there's S African money involved in South crofty, and the Chinese have bought out Redruth Brewery.  The latter hurts the most.

gus horsley

New member
Kerrier DC basically had little choice in the matter as feelings were running pretty high in the area.  It now means that South Crofty can proceed with thier plan of demolishing the existing installations at Cook's Kitchen Shaft and bring the Wheal Jane mill over for reerection on the site.  Ore is to be brought to the surface via the decline which was started in the 1970s. 

I hope they can fulfill all these ambitions, and that ?55 million is going to be enough to bring it into production.