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Last Updated: Tuesday, 4 December 2007, 09:12 GMT
Tungsten and tin mine to reopen
View of the exposed Hemerdon mine area
The mine is expected to have an anticipated life of about 20 years
A Devon mine that is believed to be one of the world's largest sources of tungsten and tin is to be reopened after more than 60 years.

Australian-based Wolf Minerals plans to start mining reserves at Hemerdon mine, Plympton to meet UK demand and exports.

The company said global demand for tin and tungsten, a metal commonly used for light bulb filament, was rising fast.

It hopes to create 500 new jobs. But locals fear the mine will engulf some homes in the village of Hemerdon.

Wolf Minerals said it was one of the largest tungsten and tin mines in the West.

'Huge impact'

The mine has had planning permission in place since 1986.

A deposit of tungsten was discovered in 1867 at Hemerdon and in 1916 renewed exploration revealed a widespread low grade wolframite deposit. Mineral working was carried out between 1919 and 1920 and again between 1934 and 1944.

I feel really sorry for those people at the top end of the village where this mine will actually engulf their homes
Parish councillor Julian Taylor

The development of the mine will result in the formation of an open pit about 850m long by 540m wide and 200m deep.

The mine is expected to have an anticipated life of about 20 years.

An access road is planned for the mine.

Parish councillor Julian Taylor said: "It will be a huge impact on Hemerdon.

"I feel really sorry for those people at the top end of the village where this mine will actually engulf their homes. There will be an impact on traffic.

"Our lives will change for ever because the beautiful top part of the village will be cut off from the main part here."

A company spokesman said: "The strategically important reserves of this valuable mineral are anticipated to meet the UK's entire demand for this essential raw material for many years to come as well as generating economically important exports and up to 500 jobs."



VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Up to 500 jobs could be created at Hemerdon mine



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