A Phase 1 report – cultural heritage impact assessment – for the proposed Haul Road and diesel storage area at Vlakvarkfontein Colliery, Mpumalanga Province including the identification of heritage resources on the approved mining right area, Vlakvarkfontein Colliery, Mpumalanga Province
Archaetnos cc was appointed by Prime Resources (Pty) Ltd to conduct a cultural heritage impact assessment for the haul/access road and diesel tank area at the Vlakvarkfontein Colliery. Archaetnos was also requested to verify the location of all heritage resources within the greater mining area as identified in the approved Environmental Management Programme for mining activities at Vlakvarkfontein as well as to provide management measures. This is situated on the farm Vlakvarkfontein 213 IR, close to Delmas in the in the Mpumalanga Province.
In the area impacted upon by the proposed haul/access road and diesel storage area, one site within close proximity to the access/haul road of cultural significance was identified. Within the greater mining area six additional sites of cultural heritage significance were found, dating to the Historical Age. The report gives a discussion of these finds and also gives an indication of the methodology followed. It also indicates how to deal with any archaeological material that may be unearthed during construction activities in the future.
Four of the sites are grave yards which are of a high cultural significance. None of these sites will be directly impacted by the proposed haul/access road or diesel tank area. However one site lies in close proximity to the access/haul road. One of these does fall within the greater mining area and could be directly impacted upon by the approved mining activities. Although the other sites found are also impacted on, these are all of low cultural significance.
It is concluded that the development of the proposed haul/access road and diesel storage area may continue with the implementation of mitigation measures.
Dr. A.C. van Vollenhoven (L.AKAD.SA.) & A.J. Pelser