All tenement requirements from application to expiry are governed by mines department requirements
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Recently, I was alerted to an opportunity to pick up ground due to a compulsory partial surrender of an Exploration Licence. The ground was set for public release at 8.30am.
I began the online application process for the 1 block Exploration Licence (ELA) and within minimal time, the application including the supporting documentation and payment of relevant fees was lodged.
A far cry from my early days in tenement management where we would wait outside the Department of Mines, Industry Regulations and Safety (DMIRS) offices for their doors to open, get the application stamped then await ballot to decide who would win the ground.
In those days, the application was required to be lodged at the DMIRS office that administered the mineral field. I was often travelling to Coolgardie, Leonora or Norseman to assist my clients pick up ground.
John Howard was on his way to the biggest win of his life.
Nothing could stop him now!
He was all set to reap the rewards of his hard work. First, though, he needed a wardrobe befitting his new status.
With all the confidence of an aspiring prime minister about to cast his election day vote, buoyed by a tailwind of positive polls and a favourable media, Howard entered the Eidsvold gentlemen’s outfitters, selected a snazzy new suit, a pair of leather dancing shoes and a fine felt hat, as well as a suitcase to put them all in, and slapped two £5 notes down onto the shop counter.
Too busy planning his next three years to notice the keen glance the shopkeeper shot him, he almost pranced out of the shop with glee. It was a landslide win! He'd done it! He’d got away with stealing more money than he'd ever dreamed of! And now he was spending it!
Mentally voting himself the canniest bushranger of all time – and soon to be the suavest, once he'd donned his new wardrobe – Howard decided to round off the day with a few wagers on the races before heading south to Sydney and a life of abundance and ease.
He was in the betting shop, about to lay another stolen fiver on a horse with short odds and good prospects for a first at the finishing post, when the long arm of the law fell across his shoulders. Looking up into the stern face of a large Sergeant, Howard felt his own prospects shrinking to a view of the blank wall of the Eidsvold Police lockup.
The world's suavest bushranger was about to become a one-term wonder – a jail term, that is.
It wasn’t supposed to end like this....
In the last years of the 1890s the law regarding alluvial mining vs reef mining came to head in a number of protests. It was the closest the Eastern Goldfields in Western Australia came to having a Eureka moment. Large numbers of mounted police were transported to the fields and the Premier John Forrest was attacked by an umbrella (which became a symbol of the resistance).
A regulation was introduced known as the “Ten-foot regulation”. The regulation was brought in to protect reef miners from claims of alluvial miners which subsequently put a large number of alluvial miners in the Fremantle jail. Nobody knew where the reefs started and finished. Under the new act alluvial miners were not allowed to dig within 50 feet of a reef and they were limited to only ten feet in depth. It was widely known that the layer of overburden that the gold was found under was at least 100 feet or deeper.
John Forrest went off to a Federation Convention over East leaving Edward Wittenoom to put this into action. With effigies of Forrest and Wittenoom hanging from hotel balconies and being set on fire, this upset a number of political leaders in Perth. Wittenoom even braved the wrath of miners who drowned out his speeches with hoots and jeers. Mounted police became a feature on the streets of Kalgoorlie to control the crowds turning out to protest the regulation.