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Wed. Apr 17th, 2024

Armidale Author, Deni McKenzie, is launching her new book NED, which puts the recollections of her family history in the public’s hands. It’s the story of John Sadleir, the Inspecting Superintendent at the capture of Ned Kelly.

As a short read of just over 100 pages, the book promises to deliver the view from the other side, covering the areas that John was posted to, a little on the 1800’s era as well as information on Henry Power’s connection with Ned, and some funny tales.

“I made the slim volume because I have one of the rare copies of my great grandfather’s recollections, and this is about the siege.” said Deni.

“There are currently no books on the market retelling this side.”

John’s recollections were written in 1913 and is now out of print, meaning this is the closest history buffs and Ned Kelly enthusiasts will get from his side. And thanks to the new $5 million museum Victoria has erected to The Kelly Gang, Deni’s book includes the photos of the Queensland Native Trackers and her great-grandfather.

We won’t be giving any juicy details, you will have to read the book, however, as the author says, the book tells the other side of the fallacious tales that have become a legend – and why they are wrong.

“The era is important, because in those days a lot of the young police were corrupted and the older police were self-centred, and reading John’s recollections it has a lot people don’t know.”

Deni will be launching NED on Thursday 21st March 5.30pm at The Lodge Theatre, on the corner of Barney & Faulkner Streets in Armidale.

Darren Hawkins, a Documentary Director, and Lauren Hamilton Neill, actor, will be attendance at the launch.

Darren has been a part of the film and television industry for nearly 25 years, working initially as an actor and voice over artist, appearing in large budget and independent feature film, local television and mini-series and a television commercial.

He soon found an interest in film making itself, often working both in front of and behind the camera.

Darren’s films, whether as director, producer or writer, have screened all over the world, have won multiple awards and can be seen on such networks as Amazon Prime, Apple TV, Channel 9, Tubi, Red Box just to name a few.

In 2023, Darren was based in the New England region, directing and producing the feature film, ‘The Girl in the Shadows’, shot primarily in Tamworth, Nundle, Kootingal and Moonbi where Lauren Hamilton Neill was the co-lead.

Lauren is an award-winning actor and writer and has been in the film and television industry for over 15 years.

A graduate of Queensland’s Conservatorium of Music, Lauren was a series regular on the series “Gods of Wheat Street” (Apple TV, ABC) and won multiple awards for the project “A Remarkable Career” with Zoe Caridis. Lauren has two feature films that will be released soon, “Stage 5”, filmed in Canada and “The Girl in the Shadows”.

Lauren and Darren are currently tirelessly working on the new feature film, “Kennedy”, set in the mid 19th Century, a biopic based on the life of Michael and Bridget Kennedy, co-writing the screenplay.

Darren is also slated to produce and direct the film while Lauren will be taking on the role of Bridget Kennedy.

“Kennedy” will also feature Deni’s great grandfather, John Sadlier, who was a large part of the chase for Ned Kelly, the superintendent in charge of where Michael Kennedy was stationed, and like Bridget Kennedy, a fellow native of Tipperary.

Written under her maiden name, D.M. Sadleir, NED will be available for purchase at the launch for $15.


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