Story: Radioactive minerals

Dredge at work, Gillespies Beach

Dredge at work, Gillespies Beach

A small dredge worked the beach sands for gold on Gillespies Beach, South Westland, in the 1930s and 1940s. Significant levels of radioactivity were found in the dredge-sand concentrates. During the Second World War this seemed to be the best chance of finding uranium in New Zealand, but subsequent testing showed that the uranium content was too low to be of economic value.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library, Thelma Kent Collection (PAColl-3052)
Reference: 1/2-009157; F

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Rebecca Priestley, 'Radioactive minerals - Prospecting for uranium', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/4778/dredge-at-work-gillespies-beach (accessed 24 October 2019)

Story by Rebecca Priestley, published 12 Jun 2006