ECR Minerals (LSE:ECR) rose by 7.2pc to 0.99p on Tuesday after unveiling ‘remarkable’ gold assays at its Timor project in Victoria, Australia.

The business recently completed a rock chip sampling programme at the asset’s Shaw’s Reef and Anglo-Saxon Reef prospects, where quartz vein material assayed 22.6g/t gold and 26.3g/t respectively. These samples were taken randomly from waste dumps created by underground operations that were completed at Timor at the turn of the 19th century and produced many thousands of ounces of gold.

In total, ECR collected 84 rock samples from 19 prospects of which more than half were mineralised or anomalous at more than 0.1g/t gold. These anomalous samples came from 14 separate opportunities and averaged 1.8g/t gold, which ECR believes to suggest ‘high-level background gold content of the host rocks associated with many of the prospects’. The maximum gold grade encountered was 6.49g/t gold from a host rock slate without any quartz content – something the company described as ‘remarkable’.

Meanwhile, the work also discovered a new reef called Brilliant/Northumbria. ECR chief executive Craig Brown said the area extends over around 500m and is prospective for ‘widespread, low-grade gold mineralisation’.

Finally, the business said that many of the prospects boasted consistently anomalous gold grades, indicating that the ore is not nuggety and reliable grades can be expected. ECR is now reviewing the data it has collected to determine its next step at Timor, adding that it will update the market on each phase of its exploration programme as it is implemented and results are interpreted.

Timor is one of five projects owned by ECR in the Victoria Goldfields region of Australia. Historical records show that the Maryborough goldfield within the licence area has produced over 640,000oz of gold from hard-rock and alluvial sources.  Meanwhile, 220,000oz mined has also been extracted from hard-rock operations at an average grade of 14g/t gold.

ECR has identified two major fault zones at Timor called the Shaw-McFarlane Fault Zone and the Leviathan-Mariners Fault Zone. These are responsible for the majority of the project’s hard-rock gold production. ECR believes that both of the zones have the potential for modern open cut and underground mining techniques because of the scale of the deposits they present.

Alongside its work at Timor, ECR is currently completing exploration and project development operational activity at its Creswick and Bailieston licences in Victoria.

Author: Daniel Flynn

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