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A sad farewell to a much loved trek and tour leader

A sad farewell to a much loved trek and tour leader

It is with great sadness that we have to tell you of the death on Tuesday 12th August of ‘Ned’ Kelly. He had been fighting illness for the last year and died at home peacefully with his family around him.

Ned had been a trek and tour leader for Mountain Kingdoms almost since the year we started in business in 1987. Over a period of some 26 years he led more trips for MK than anyone else. He was incredibly popular and if those of you who travelled with him would like to write letters or send cards of sympathy please feel free to send them to 20 Long Street, Wotton-u-Edge and we will forward them on to his family.

Ned had a long and accomplished career as a cameraman and Producer for the HTV and the BBC, latterly working at the BBC’s Natural History Unit in Bristol. He worked with the likes of David Attenborough, and won an EMMY for his part in the ‘Living Planet’ series. Ned took part in lots of adventurous film projects and many of you will remember I am sure, the televised ascent of the Old Man of Hoy in 1967. Well, Ned was one of the cameramen! He loved climbing and mountains in general. He went as climber/cameraman on two of Chris Bonington’s Everest expeditions, and reached 26,000ft on the south west face. He was a cameraman on ‘The Voyage of Charles Darwin’, filmed butterflies in the Himalaya, made a film about the life and times of the Sherpas of Everest, and helped produce ‘Everest the Hard Way’.

He also accompanied our M.D., Steve Berry, on his expedition to Cho Oyu in 1984 and helped film the expedition as far as base camp. He nearly got trampled to death by a herd of stampeding Yaks, and it was this trip that cemented the friendship between Ned and Steve. One of Ned’s longest standing friendships though was in fact with a Sherpa known as ‘BBC’ Pemba. Ned supported Pemba’s family helping with the costs of their children’s education. Ned was well known for his generosity and helped fund very many good projects in Nepal.

Anyone who came in contact with him will remember his incredible smile, his soft unique voice and ready laughter. He will be sorely missed. Death always seems to take the best people, and Ned was the very best.

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