Churchill Diamond Project: Detailed Geophysical Surveying Commences 2004 Exploration Program Underway


Shear Minerals Ltd. (SRM:TSXV), Stornoway Diamond Corporation (SWY:TSXV) and BHP Billiton today announced that the 2004 field program on the Churchill Diamond Project has commenced with a detailed airborne geophysical survey.

The survey includes the collection of more than 33,000 line-km of detailed magnetic and electromagnetic (EM) data. The survey, which will be flown in two stages, is being conducted by Fugro Airborne Surveys using their helicopter-borne Resolve system. The survey will focus on the core mineral claims where the most favourable mineral chemistry has been recovered and where kimberlites were discovered in 2003. Independent consultant Mr. Kit Campbell, P. Geoph. of Intrepid Geophysics, Vancouver, B.C., has been engaged to provide quality control while the survey is being conducted and to interpret the data once the survey is complete. Results from the survey will be combined with geochemical data to identify targets for drilling, which is scheduled to begin in the late spring 2004.

"The partnership is committed to discovering the sources of the most favourable indicator mineral chemistry," said Pamela Strand, President of Shear Minerals Ltd. "This survey is the next logical step towards identifying drilling targets and achieving this goal."

Eira Thomas, CEO of Stornoway commented: "We are excited to be commencing our work program at Churchill for 2004. This airborne geophysical survey is the first step in an aggressive, $8 million, multiphased program focused in regions of high interest, un-sourced mineral chemistry."

The Churchill Diamond Projects encompass more than 8.4 million acres located near the community of Rankin Inlet in the Kivalliq region of Nunavut. Airborne geophysical surveys have identified more than 400 geophysical anomalies on the property to date, of which 26 have been drill tested. This drill testing has identified 16 kimberlites on the main Churchill area and an additional two on the International Samuel Churchill West area. Shear has a 51% interest in the project and is operator. Stornoway Diamond Corp. and BHP Billiton have 35% and 14% interests respectively.

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

Suite 220, 9797 - 45 Avenue
Edmonton, AB, Canada T6E 5V8
Tel: 780-435-0045 Fax: 780-989-0322

On behalf of the Board

/s/ "Eira Thomas"
Eira Thomas

For further information, please contact the Company at
604-331-2267 or (888) 338-2200

Suite 860 - 625 Howe St.
Vancouver, B.C., Canada V6C 2T6
Tel: 604-331-2267 Fax: 604-331-2266

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.