Gold in Ireland


Gold is sought after not only for investment purposes and for jewellery, but it is also used in the manufacturing of certain electronic and medical devices.  The demand for gold, the amount of gold in the central banks’ reserves, the value of the U.S. dollar and the desire to hold gold as a hedge against inflation and currency devaluation, all help drive the price of gold.  According to the World Gold Council, gold prices are robust following reappraisal of gold’s role and relevance after the 2008 financial crisis, western banks have ceased sell-offs and eastern banks are buying bullion.

Consumer demand in China is growing amongst the newly affluent.  The perceived political risk observed in many countries where gold is mined and the rise of so-called resource-nationalism has brought stable jurisdictions such as Ireland and Northern Ireland back into the limelight.  At present only the small Galántas mine in Omagh is operating,  elsewhere at the Curraghinalt Project, Dalradian Resources established a significant Resources and Reserves.

Ireland has always been prospective for gold and continues to have a significant number of prospectors throughout Ireland.  Since the 1790’s the Mines River area has been synonymous with gold.  A number of finds of alluvial gold in rivers and streams in the area resulted in the ‘Avoca Gold Rush’ in the late 1700’s – early 1800’s.  The British sent a detachment to control the situation but the soldiers joined the panning.  It was a short lived boom but since then numerous unsuccessful attempts have been made to find the mother lode.  It is said that Charles Stuart Parnell panned the river behind his house, Avonmore, in the Wicklow hills, until he had enough gold to make a wedding ring for Kitty O’Shea.  In recent years a Garda in Naas using a metal detector found some large beautiful nuggets.  We have always been a big believer in ‘closeology’ i.e. the best place to find gold is where gold has already been discovered.  There is significant information on the prospectivity of the area as earlier explorers had previously spent a significant amount of money looking for the source of the Avoca gold rush.

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Mine River

Gold is known in the counties of Wicklow and Wexford since ancient times, as reflected in the place names and folklore of the region.  Avoca (Oboca in Latin) was recorded on Ptolemy’s map of Ireland dating from around 140 AD and there is evidence that trade existed between Roman Britain and Hibernia at that time.  More recently, mining for copper, silver and gold at Avoca area occurred from the 1720’s through to the 1980’s. From the Wicklow Gold Rush of 1795 to the present day, gold has and is being discovered in the streams and soils in Wicklow and Wexford. It is estimated that 7,000 to 9,000 oz of gold were extracted from alluvial gravels in the area of Mines River in the late 1700s.


Arkle Resources holds a block of five licences (213.5 square kilometres) which cover an area of known gold mineralisation which extends along a trend of some 15 kilometres. The Company has been very active on the areas since acquiring the licences from former JV partner in late 2017. Drilling in 2017 identified 8m grading at 4.53g/t Au at the Tombreen target.  Further work to develop the existing gold targets is ongoing and drilling has re-commenced in Q2 2021.



The Inishowen Gold Project is located on the Inishowen peninsula in County Donegal, Ireland. These two licences are considered by Arkle Resources to be highly prospective for mesothermal gold mineralisation similar to that found at the Curraghinalt Project developed by Dalradian Resources Inc. and recently acquired by Orion Mine Finance. Arkle Resources is the first company to drill for gold in the area and has had encouraging results. The initial discovery in early 2016 of 3.05m grading at 5.8g/t Au was assayed in hole 16-MR-03 from 23.05m. In June 2016 another high-grade zone was intercepted in hole 16-MR-07 at 8.13m, grading 5.48g/t Au over 4.82m.  A large soil sampling programme was completed over the wider area in 2020 to identify new targets.  Trenching at the end of 2020 revealed further gold bearing veins in bedrock.


Last updated : 21st June 2021