Churchill Diamond Project: $7.8 Million Exploration Budget Announced for 2004


Shear Minerals Ltd. (SRM:TSXV), Stornoway Diamond Corporation. (SWY:TSXV) and BHP Billiton today announced that a $7.8 million exploration budget has been approved for the Churchill Diamond Project. In addition, Shear, Stornoway, BHP Billiton and International Samuel Exploration Corp. (SAZ:TSXV) have approved a $1.75 million exploration budget for the Churchill West Diamond Project. Both projects are located between the communities of Rankin Inlet and Chesterfield Inlet in Nunavut Territory.

The objective of the 2004 program on the Churchill Project is to discover the sources of the high interest kimberlite indicator minerals identified in earlier programs. Exploration plans include extensive heavy mineral sampling and high resolution airborne electromagnetic (EM) and magnetic surveys. Ground geophysical surveying and drilling of airborne geophysical targets with supportive mineral chemistry is also being planned. The $7.8 million work program will commence in spring 2004. $6 million has been allocated to the 1.5 million acre core claims and $1.8 million has been allocated to a portion of the 6.4 million acres of prospecting permits acquired in February of this year.

On the Churchill West Project, the partners recently announced a $1.75 million work program aimed at identifying prospective drill targets. Exploration plans include heavy mineral sampling, additional airborne geophysical surveying followed by ground geophysical surveying and drilling of prospective targets.

In 2003, Shear and partners discovered 18 kimberlites over a wide area on the Churchill and Churchill West projects. Ten of the kimberlites were diamond bearing. More than 23,000 line-km of airborne geophysical surveying has been conducted on the projects and 269 priority magnetic targets have been identified. Last year, more than 1,800 heavy mineral samples were also collected. The heavy mineral sampling program included target specific sampling of priority geophysical anomalies, in-fill sampling within regional dispersion trains where high interest chemistry has been identified and regional sampling. In addition, dispersal train studies were carried out in the vicinity of known kimberlites. Results from the 2003 heavy mineral sampling program will play an important role in identifying potential drill targets this year.

"In 2003 we discovered a completely new kimberlite field and made progress towards isolating the sources of the exceptional mineral chemistry that has been identified on the property," said Pamela Strand, President and CEO of Shear. "This year's program will build on the results from last year and will be focused on discovering those sources."

The Churchill Diamond Projects encompass more than 8.4 million acres located near the community of Rankin Inlet in the Kivalliq region of Nunavut. The project is owned by joint venture partners Shear, which has a 51% interest and is the operator, Stornoway (35%) and BHP Billiton (14%).

This news release contains forward-looking statements regarding ongoing and upcoming exploration work and expected geology, geological formations and structures. Actual results may differ materially from those anticipated in these statements. The TSX Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

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On behalf of the Board


/s/ "Eira Thomas"
Eira Thomas

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On behalf of the Board


/s/ "Pamela Strand"
Pamela Strand, P. Geol.

For further information, please contact the Company at 780-435-0045 or 1-866-298-9695