The campaign follows a farm-in and joint venture deal inked by the pair late last month, which involves OM Holdings earning up to 70% of Bryah’s manganese rights at the Bryah Basin project.
Under the deal, OM Holdings will spend $7.3 million on manganese exploration across the project, including $500,000 in stage one expenditure to undertake drilling by the end of June.
Bryah will remain as the project manager until OM Holdings earns a 51% joint venture interest after funding an accumulated total of $3 million.
In today’s announcement, Bryah said stage one drilling for a minimum of 3,000m has commenced at Horseshoe South.
Horseshoe South mine
The Horseshoe South mine, located north of Meekatharra in central WA, is the largest historic manganese mine in the region.
The mine operated during the 1950s and 1960s and again between 2008-2011, producing a total of about 1 million tonnes of high-grade manganese ore over its lifetime.
The more recent operations involved a Mineral Resources (ASX: MIN) subsidiary processing historical stockpiles and completing open pit mining.
Bryah secured an option to purchase Horseshoe South and the manganese rights to 154sq km of adjoining ground in May 2018.
It completed the acquisition last month, in conjunction with its secured farm-in deal with OM Holdings.
Rock chip sampling carried out in the area last year returned up to 48.8% manganese.
The duo’s stage one drilling program will comprise several high-priority manganese targets including the Brumby Creek and Devils Hill prospects, along with an area immediately north of a neighbouring tenement where an indicated mineral resource of 437,000t at 19.6% manganese was recorded in 2011.
Bryah managing director Neil Marston said his company’s exploration team had conducted a significant amount of ground work ahead of drilling.
“The plan under the joint venture agreement is for us to drill test targets at the Horseshoe South manganese mine and the Brumby Creek and Devils Hill prospects, as well as some other untested sights as quickly as possible,” he said in a statement last month.
“We see excellent potential for shallow drilling to identify significant manganese resources in this largely unexplored landholding in the Bryah Basin,” Mr Marston added.