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Tory big game hunter Roger Lomas meets Prime Minister David Cameron over Tyrone gold mining plans

Published 20/05/2016

Roger Lomas with David Cameron and Elizabth Truss, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Roger Lomas with David Cameron and Elizabth Truss, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Roger Lomas at Number 10
Roger Lomas

Big game hunter, the Northern Ireland Conservative Roger Lomas met with the Prime Minister David Cameron to discuss plans for gold mining in Co Tyrone.

Dalradian Gold’s is seeking a prospecting licence for land around the small village of Greencastle, just outside Cookstown.

The firm has identified 2.5 mile gold deposit in the Sperrin Mountains outside Gortin, where it is looking to build the mine.

Community groups in the area are opposed to the plans and have raised concerns over potential environmental damage and the proximity of the site close to homes, sports clubs and schools.

However, Dalradian, has said the site will be low-lying and they will work to minimise any potential impact to the surrounding areas. It has spent millions in the area.

Work at the site by Dalradian has included drilling, logging and assaying over 50,000 metres of core. It has also launched an "underground exploration programme", which involved up to 2,000m of underground development, 20,000m of additional drilling and sampling.

Tyrone Conservative Party member Roger Lomas - a special advisory to the party's Northern Ireland chairman met with David Cameron to discuss the plans during a reception for British Food at Downing Street.

He said: "Seizing the moment to speak one-to-one with PM David Cameron, I brought to his attention the potential for 400 new private enterprise jobs for west Tyrone.

"At the end of the briefing the Prime Minister instructed me to bring the company to the attention of his PA for inclusion in a short list of potential venues for his next Northern Ireland trip."

Dalradian welcomed the Prime Minister's interest and formally invited him to the site.

Conservative candidate Roger Lomas with an antelope he shot in South Africa
Conservative candidate Roger Lomas with an antelope he shot in South Africa
Roger Lomas out hunting with his dog.

More: 'Where does your food come from?' asks Tyrone Tory candidate criticised over African safari hunt

Roger Lomas faced a barrage of criticism for shooting dead an antelope and posing with it for a picture during an African safari, prior to this years Assembly election.

He defended the South African hunting trip saying the animal was heading for the slaughter and it was more humane to hunt it than how cattle and poultry are treated in abattoirs in the UK.

The West Tyrone candidate received 44 first preference votes.

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