Wolf Minerals secures loans for Hemerdon tungsten mine

Hemerdon link road construction
Image caption Work on the new link road from Plympton to the mine at Hemerdon has already begun

An Australian company planning to restart tungsten mining in Devon has secured £55m in bank loans - half the money required for its venture.

Wolf Minerals hopes to begin mining the mineral at Hemerdon, on the edge of Plymouth, in 2014.

Tungsten is used in metal-working, construction and in the manufacture of electrical equipment and light bulbs.

It was discovered at Hemerdon in 1867 and mining was carried out between 1919 and 1920 and again from 1934 to 1944.

More than 200 jobs could be created at Hemerdon. Work has already begun to build a link road between Lee Moor and Plympton, which was one of the agreements between Wolf and Devon County Council.

Wolf said the £55m in loans had been agreed from three of the world leaders in mine finance - UniCredit, ING and Caterpillar Finance.

The rest is expected to come from companies buying contracts for the mine's tungsten and through the sale of shares.

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