SEL 2/07

Part block 50/11 (Hook Head), part block 49/9 (Helvick), part blocks 50/6 & 50/7 (Dunmore)

Activity Status:

Exploration & appraisal

JV Partners and Interests


  • Providence Resources Plc (Operator) 62.5%
  • Atlantic Petroleum (Ireland) Limited 18.3333%
  • Lansdowne Oil & Gas plc 10%
  • Sosina Exploration Limited 9.1667%

        SEL 2/07, remaining area

  • Providence Resources Plc (Operator) 72.5%
  • Sosina Exploration Limited 9.1677%
  • Atlantic Petroleum (Ireland) Limited 18.3333%


The licence group is in the process of application with the PAD to convert the licence into a Lease Undertaking where development options will be studied. In November 2013, it was announced that the joint venture had agreed a phased farm-in by ABT Oil & Gas into the Helvick and Dunmore oil discoveries. Under the agreed terms of the farm-in, ABT Oil & Gas will carry out a work programme which will include an assessment of commerciality and, as appropriate, submission of plans for field development to first oil, using ABT Oil & Gas’ low cost development solutions. Upon completion of agreed work programme ABT Oil & Gas will earn a 50% interest in the discoveries.

The Hook Head field lies approximately 60 km off the south coast of Ireland. In 1971 the then operator, Marathon, drilled the IRL50/11-1 well which encountered four hydrocarbon bearing reservoirs within the Early Cretaceous Wealden Sandstones. Due to operational difficulties at that time, the well was not properly tested, so there was uncertainty whether the reservoirs contained oil, gas or a combination of both. The IRL50/11-3 appraisal well was spudded by the current partner group in August 2007. The well confirmed the presence of hydrocarbons, with 75 feet of net hydrocarbon bearing reservoir within a 484 feet gross interval. The well was not properly tested due to operational issues, however hydrocarbons recovered from the well confirmed the presence of 30 degree API oil and associated gas. The well has been suspended for potential re-entry in the future.

The IRL50/11-4 appraisal well was spudded in August 2008 on the north-west flank of the Hook Head structure. The well penetrated Wealden sand packages with oil and gas shows and also a 30 feet net hydrocarbon bearing Lower Cretaceous sand above the primary target. The hydrocarbons encountered were substantially less than anticipated, so the well was plugged and abandoned.

Work is currently being carried out to assess the potential of developing the central panel of the Hook Head Field, where the 50/11-1 and 50/11-3 wells were drilled using innovative development methods.

The Helvick oil field is located in the southwest corner of Block 49/9, some 36 km off the south coast of Ireland. It lies approximately 50 km northeast of the Kinsale Head gas field. The Helvick discovery well, IRL49/9-2 was drilled by the then operator, Gulf Oil, in 1983 and flowed at 9,901 bopd and 7.44 MMscfpd from four units. Two further appraisal wells were drilled in the 1980s to delineate the field.

In 2000, the current operator, Providence, drilled the 49/9-6Z well, which was flow tested at 5,064 bopd and 5.8 MMscfpd. This flow confirmed the good reservoir and fluid characteristics seen on the original 49/9-2 discovery well. Further detailed analysis, however, indicated that the Helvick reservoir is compartmentalised and would require further appraisal. Providence concluded that development of Helvick on a stand-alone basis could not be justified given market conditions at that time. However innovative development methods are being investigated.

Block 50/6 is located approximately 20 km north of the Hook Head Field. The discovery well, IRL50/6-1, was drilled by the then operator, Gulf Oil, in 1985 and flowed at a rate of 2,074 bopd of high quality (40-44° API) oil and associated gas.