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Gold rush in Cornwall: The Queen and Duke of Cornwall settle 400-year-old feud

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Her Majesty and the Prince of Wales have come to a settlement in regards to a long standing disagreement. The issue at hand was the rights of gold reserves which were discovered in a tin and copper mine in South Crofty, Cornwall in 2010.

Advisers to both Her Majesty and Prince Charles thought perhaps that after a 400 year old dispute between the Crown Estate and Prince Charles’ Duchy of Cornwall, there was no time like the present to settle who owns the rights to the profits.

Republicans are upset yet again, claiming that any monies the Duchy receives are exempt from corporate taxes. It seems their views conflict with a statement on the Duchy of Cornwall’s website which says, “The Prince of Wales is not entitled to the proceeds of profits on the sale of assets, and only receives the annual income which they generate, which is voluntarily subject to income taxes.”

Since 1568, the Crown Estate has granted the required consent to mine and remove gold from what are known as the Mines Royal. This posed a problem as the 130,000 acre Duchy, which originated in 1337, is part of the mining region. For well over 400 years, a battle of sorts had continued as to who is the rightful recipient of the profits.

The Freedom of Information rules have allowed the publication of documents about the deal from the Crown Estate in regards to the awarding of licenses to mine. “50 per cent of any revenue or capital receipts, net of costs to the Duchy of Cornwall,” will be granted according to David Harris, the Crown Estates Deputy Head of Legal. Details of the plan are not yet publicised.

Cornwall was once known for its tin industry, and mining in the area had taken place since the 16th Century. In 1998, the South Crofty Mine was shuttered due to the tumbling prices in the tin industry. Then, in 2007, Western United Mines began exploring South Crofty in hopes of mining copper, zinc and tin. No one imagined that gold existed in Cornwall.

According to their website, Western United Mines has plans to restart the full scale mining production that was once the lifeblood of South Crofty, towards the end of 2014 or in early 2015.

photo credit: fatmanad via photopin cc

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