THE NORTHUMBRIAN KIAP: BUSH ADMINISTRATION IN SELF-GOVERNING PAPUA NEW GUINEA, by Robert Forster. Available from the author (; email: £12.99. Softback.

A VIVID first-hand account of the author’s sometimes dangerous work as a colonial bush administrator – a kiap – in pre-independence Papua New Guinea between 1968 and 1975 is told in this 300-page illustrated book.

It outlines the stresses provoked by PNG’s determination to establish its own identity by rejecting kiap government directed through Australia, and offers an unusual insight into problems faced by its civil service as well as by the local population during the approach to independence.

Robert Forster, who lives in the Hexham area, has worked as a journalist for the Hexham Courant, Farmers Guardian and BBC Farming Today. Last year he was presented with the Royal Smithfield Club’s Bicentenary Trophy for lifetime service to the UK’s cattle industry.