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:: Martin Millard - 1951-2007
It is with sadness that we note the recent passing of Martin Millard in the United Kingdom.
Martin Millard was born on 04 September 1951 in Penang, moving as an infant to Singapore where his father worked for Borneo motors. He attended boarding school in the UK and regularly flew between Singapore and the UK as a child.
He graduated from Cambridge University with an MA Metallurgy in 1973 and subsequently received a Graduate Diploma of Mineral Economics from Macquarie University in 1989.
After graduating from Cambridge University he worked in operating companies producing copper, uranium, tin and gold in Central and Southern Africa (Nchanga Consolidated Copper Mines Ltd and Rossing Uranium Ltd), Australia (Renison Ltd and Minatome Australia Pty Ltd) and Papua New Guinea, reaching the position of Mill Superintendent at the start up of the Ok Tedi project. He spent the next twenty years with engineering contracting companies in Australia, the last seventeen of those as metallurgical manager of various organisations including Fluor Australia Pty Ltd, Davy John Brown Pty Ltd, Bateman Kinhill, Signet Engineering Pty Ltd, and, Worley Chemicals and Minerals. Late in his career, he worked as a Metallurgical Consultant, principally with Metallurgical Design and Management Pty Ltd and later Intermet Engineering Pty Ltd in Perth.
Specific areas of technical expertise included all aspects of gold and silver processing, base metal hydrometallurgy and in particular comminution circuit design.
Martin contributed to “Advances in Gold Ore Processing” (2005), and to the “Cost Estimation Handbook for the Australian Mining Industry” (1993). He authored several technical papers concerning bacterial oxidation, cobalt hydrometallurgy and comminution.
Martin was a very keen sportsman, he played good, if eccentric golf, but his main love was always rugby union, playing first team level for his school, his college at Cambridge, and a succession of teams in distant locations from the sands of Namibia, to the mud of West Coast Tasmania. The infamous rugby tours of the Far East are probably still remembered by many of the ex Nchanga Copper mine staff in the industry. He also played for the district side when at Rossing Uranium in Namibia, no mean feat as the only English speaker in the side, often mistaking the pre match prayer as a pep talk.
He met his wife of 27 years, Jackie, in the assay laboratory at Chingola and moved to Swakopmund in Namibia. They then moved to Australia, living in Zeehan in Tasmania and Townsville in Queensland where the first of many infamous but, beloved beagles joined them. From there they moved to Ok Tedi in PNG in the very early days of operation, followed by Melbourne and Perth.
Martin and Jackie were well known for their dinner parties and luncheons. An invitation to their home was always regarded as an opportunity to catch up with peers as well as indulge in fine foods and wines. These occasions will be sorely missed by all those lucky enough to have attended one of these gatherings.
Finally after many postponements, they moved back to retire in the UK, in the beautiful New Forest near Southampton. Sadly Martin never did retire, falling ill even as he was still quartering the globe on those definitely “last jobs”.
Never shy of mucking in and getting his hands dirty, he would gain the respect, trust and often affection of his crews and work colleagues in an amazing number of countries. To the end, one of his most prized possessions was a full set of working hunting bows and spears presented to him as a personal gift from one of his local foremen when he left PNG.
Martin passed away on Sunday 04 February 2007 following a long illness. He is survived by his wife Jackie, and all who knew Martin extend their heartfelt sympathies to her.
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