The John Bull Gold Project is located east of Glen Innes in northern New South Wales within the New England Orogen.
The project had never previously been drilled despite a number of historical shafts sunk in the 1880’s and gold sluicing in the 1940’s and contained ‘walk-up and fully permitted’ drill targets at the time of acquisition in June 2022.
The Historical John Bull gold workings contain approximately seven historical shafts sunk in the mid 1880’s when gold was first discovered in the area, the primary shaft named the John Bull shaft. Sluicing of free surface gold was conducted at the project over two large areas in the mid 1940’s. As a follow up to the two historical mining activities in the 1980’s, a surface trench areas (historic surface trench (Kennecott & Southern Goldfields Ltd - 1980’s) returned: 160m @ 1.2 g/t Au, with impressive higher-grade intervals including 5m @ 18.0 g/t Au and 5m @ 7.1 g/t Au).
The maiden Reverse Circulation (RC) drilling campaign completed by the Company mid-August 2022 was the first ever drilling of any form, testing for bed-rock gold mineralisation at depth below the number of historical workings. The inaugural RC drilling program consisted of seven RC holes drilled for a total of 887 metres. JBRC001 intersected 68m @ 1.0 g/t Au from surface that included 23m @ 2.02 g/t Au and 94m @ 0.95 g/t Au including 66m @ 1.14 g/t Au from 32m (JBRC007).
Figure 1: Discovery RC drill line completed at the John Bull Project in 2022.
Project Highlights Include:
A historic surface trench at the project contains a mineralised interval of 160m @ 1.2 g/t Au.
- JBRC001 68m @ 1.0 g/t Au from surface including 23m @ 2.02 g/t Au.
- JBRC002 94m @ 0.95 g/t Au including 66m @ 1.14 g/t Au from 32m.
- Soils samples up to 10 g/t Au.
- North Area - 1,000m x 250m 100ppb Au soils anomaly (open to the north).
- South Area - 250m x 150m 100ppb Au soils anomaly.
- John Bull represents an orogenic gold system with scale and large tonnage potential from surface.
Figure 2: John Bull Location NSW.
The cross-section view of the northern DDIP line is presented as Figure 2 with the mineralised 160m @ 1.2g/t Au zone in previous trenching (costean) also shown. A distinct chargeability high occurs beneath the trench area with readings up to 40mV/V. The chargeability high may indicate the presence of disseminated sulphides beneath the trench. The New England Orogen forms the eastern margin of the Australian continent and extends for over 1,700km from central NSW through to northern QLD. The rock units that form the New England Orogen range in age from Neoproterozoic through to Mesozoic.
Historic gold workings at the John Bull Project consist of several shallow shafts sunk in the 1870’s and two later, large areas of surface gold sluicing (Figure 3). Creeks below the colluvial workings have also been worked for alluvial gold. These historic gold workings occur in a sequence of Carboniferous-Permian greywacke and siltstone intruded by small intermediate sub-volcanic trachyte to micro-monzonite of likely Permian or Triassic age. Sheeted and stockwork quartz veining is widespread over the area of the sluiced colluvial workings, with veins dipping generally eastward. Sulphides identified previously associated with veining consist almost entirely of pyrite - arsenopyrite ± pyrrhotite.
Figure 3: John Bull stage 1 and stage 2 gold in soils geochemistry anomaly.
The last significant exploration activity was carried out between 1983 to 1985 by Kennecott Exploration (Australia) and Southern Goldfields Ltd. Activity included a 220m long backhoe dug trench into weathered quartz veined bedrock across the main (northern) area of alluvial gold sluicing. The trench averaged 1.2 g/t Au across the interval 0 - 160m (with 5m composite assay intervals ranging up to 18.0 g/t and 7.1 g/t Au; (refer to ASX announcement 16th May 2022).
Several features of the geology and mineralisation at the Joh Bull Project, including the presence of sheeted and stockwork quartz veins with associated sulphides support the Company’s interpretation for a possible Orogenic Gold System model for gold mineralisation at John Bull. Drilling intersected varying amounts of quartz veining between 1 to 40% and has been logged over wide intervals in each of the seven holes accompanied by varying amounts of disseminated pyrite. A sequence of fine to medium grained, carbon rich sedimentary rocks (shale - siltstone - sandstone) with thin, <1m thick, dolerite and/or diorite dykes also intersected in holes JBRC001, JBRC002, JBRC004, JBRC005, JBRC006 & JBRC007.
IRGS gold deposits are also known in the John Bull area with the previously mined Timbarra Gold Mine (Identified Mineral Resource now mined of 417,000 oz Au), located 40km north of John Bull.
An existing drill permit and access agreement allows for an initial fence of drill holes to effectively test beneath the wide zone of near surface gold mineralisation outlined by the historic trench (160m @ 1.2g/t Au) and the surface rock chip channel samples (Figure 4). The inaugural drilling program is anticipated to commence in mid-2022 and will be the first drilling program to be undertaken in the project area.