Kamilaroi documentary features Moree elder Polly Cutmore

The history and cultural traditions of the Kamilaroi people have been captured in an award-winning short documentary.

The documentary, The Kamilaroi, will be broadcast on NITV on January 17 at 7pm and was created by Idemitsu Boggabri Coal in partnership with Kamilaroi people.

In the film, Kamilaroi people, including Moree elder Polly Cutmore, share historic, cultural and spiritual stories.

In the film, Ms Cutmore and fellow Kamilaroi woman and ex-Gunnedah resident Dolly Talbot tell the Kamilaroi story behind the controversially-named landmark Gin's Leap near Boggabri.

The story that is generally told and documented on the signage is that a young Aboriginal woman was in love but was promised to another Aboriginal man. She was then chased up to the top of the cliff by the tribe and, rather than being with a man she didn't want to be with, chose to jump off the cliff to her death.

However, as Ms Cutmore and Ms Talbot relate, this is considered a 'whitewashed' lover's story by local Aboriginal people. The Aboriginal name for the location is 'Coolabindi' and the story told by the Kamilaroi is that a local squatter drove an Aboriginal woman off the cliff to her death. To add insult to injury, the name Gin's Leap is particularly offensive because 'Gin' was a name given to Aboriginal women who were plied with alcohol so the white settlers could take advantage of them.

Gin's Leap is near Boggabri.

Gin's Leap is near Boggabri.

Ms Talbot said her people want to share these stories with all Australians.

"Sharing stories is how we maintain connection to each other and to country and that's very important for Aboriginal people," she said.

Fellow Kamilaroi man Greg Griffiths said this documentary is a great way for cultural stories to be "shared with the community and passed on to future generations".

"Aboriginal people have a strong storytelling tradition," he said.

"Our stories are about who we are and it's how we pass on our traditions and our culture. This documentary is an excellent way for us to do that."

Executive producer of the documentary, Hamish Russell, said they were grateful for the Kamilaroi people's "generosity in sharing these stories".

"The response so far to the documentary from the community and from schools has been overwhelming," he said.

The filmwill screen on NITV on Friday, January 17 at 7pm and will be distributed to Australian schools.