Aug 052013

There is a new bike path under construction on the Pacific Highway near Scenic Drive. This path will connect Fernleigh Track to Merewether via Fernleigh Loop and Faul Street.





Here are some more photos from 16th August. This will be an excellent link and RMS are to be congratulated for building this so quickly. Its a bit unfortunate to have the light poles in the path, and we hope this does not make it difficult to get a road sweeping machine along it occasionally. The crash barrier between cyclists and cars will make this section much safer, and the retaining wall is wide enough that there shouldn’t be debris falling onto the path. Lets hope the light poles are decorated with reflective tape, and have a line marking to direct unobservant cyclists away from them.





Jul 282013


Today over forty riders slowly cycled their way from Islington Park, along the Throsby Creek track to the Newcastle Foreshore  near Nobbys Beach to take part in the inaugural Newcastle Tweed Ride. Vintage bikes were celebrated and revered as everyone swapped stories about how they came to possess their treasured antique or classic bikes.

Newcastle Cycleways Movement would like to thank all those who took part and who helped promote the ride in the leadup to the event. See more coverage on The Herald website.






Jun 302013


NCM is sponsoring a Tweed Ride in Newcastle in conjunction with Newcastle City Council. Meet at Islington Park at 10am, then ride along the Throsby Creek cycleway. Bring  morning tea to eat at The Foreshore and wear your tweed or vintage gear. Vintage bikes preferred but not necessary.facebook-banner

 Posted by at 4:13 pm
Jun 062013

Photo credit: Vicki Coughlan

Location Sunday May 2012 Sunday May 2013    
Route 6        
Honeysuckle Dve, west end 175 220 126%
Route 6, Hannel St 137 189 138%
Route 6, TAFE 113 100 88% Note:1 hr x2
Route 6, Wartah Stn 46
Route 6, Maud St
Moore St near Regal cinema
East west        
Jesmond Park/JHH
Howe St-Croudace Rd 32
Turton Rd/ Sports centre 66 79 120%
Showground, Markets. 82
Beaumont St/ Donald St 86
King St /Markettown 72 69 96%
Civic Park corner 91 80 88%
Coastal Cycleway        
Fernleigh /Kalaroo Rd 198 285 144%
Fernleigh Track/Dibbs St 224 257 115%
Glebe Rd/ Teralba Rd 114
Parkway / Union St 58
Stockton Wharf
Mackie Ave/St James Rd 68 88 129%
Dixon Park/ bathers way
North South / Kotara 28
Glebe Rd/ Gordon Ave
Industrial Dv-Maitland Rd 47
Industrial Dve/Tourle St
Industrial Dve, William St 68 65 96%
Queens wharf 148 148
Booragul/ 5 Islands
Glenrock/ Gunclub Rd 100
Nobbys Breakwater 72


BikesCount report for Sunday 26th May 2013


Twelve spotters counted cyclists for 2 hours from 8am till 10am, on a bright but cold morning. Total cyclists 1577 , of whom 18% were female. This is a lower proportion of females than last year, (26%). We also counted parent child pairs: 34 =2.2%

Total for comparison, same sites 1360 vs 1580 = 16.2% increase. There is a trend of increasing numbers on the best tracks ie Fernleigh Track and Throsby Creek and mixed results elsewhere. This could also be because lower numbers are more prone to random fluctuation.  At this rate cycling will double every 4.5 years.

The number of cyclists on the Fernleigh and Throsby Creek tracks just keeps going up, with more patchy results elsewhere. We believe this is because many new people will cycle where they feel safe, and that the best place to build cycleways to get high use would be where they connect to and extend one of these popular existing routes.

We will do another count on a Tuesday in October, and will have to recruit some new counters to keep the coverage up.

Jun 022013


NAB Coffs Coast Cycle Challenge – Festival of Cycling

This is the fourth year of the NAB Coffs Coast Cycle Challenge with more riders participating from throughout NSW and the other states. The Event is a ride of up to 100 kilometres starting and finishing at the Coffs Harbour Jetty Foreshores. The challenge is very popular with events for the rider that likes a challenge plus the scenic views and relaxed environment.

The 2013 Challenge, being held on the 4th August, will have eight different categories to enter suiting all cyclists. There is a Lucky Draw using Rider BIB number drawn out of hat and a lucky rider in the 60k or 100k category will win a Cycle with a recommended Retail Price over $3,500. There will also be various spot prizes for many riders.

Eight Levels of Entry:

1 – 100 km solo cyclists male.

2  – 100 km solo cyclists female.

3  – 100 km team event, (unisex), with 2, 3 or 4 cyclists all cycling the 100km.

4  – 100 km relay event, (groups of 2 or 3). Each cyclist completes approximately one third of the course.

5  – 100 km Tandem and Recumbent Bikes, (unisex).

6  – 60 km solo cyclists male.  *

7  – 60 km solo cyclists female.  *

8  – Family Ride

* with the option of riding a retro bike being one with a steel frame and downtube shifters

Go to:

The Cycle Challenge is the main event of the Coffs Coast Festival of Cycling.

Following on from the success of the NAB Coffs Coast Cycle Challenge in August 2012 Coffs City Rotary resolved to formally initiate an annual Coffs Coast Festival of Cycling in 2013.

The Festival will run over the period from Friday 26 July to Sunday 11 August. Subsequent Festivals will generally be over the same period each year thereafter. That is a period of a little over 2 weeks concluding on the second Sunday in August.

A full list of the cycling events so far on this year’s Festival calendar appears on the Festival website You will there see among other events that the BMX Club is hosting racing on Fridays 26 July, 2 and 9 August and the MTB Club will hold its very popular Pleasure and Pain mountain bike enduro on Sunday 11 August.

We are liaising with the Coffs Harbour Cycle Club to promote a significant road race and hopefully a criterium, (and maybe a short ‘tour’) during the Festival. If you have any ideas on how we can best serve the wants and needs of cyclists and their supporters through the Festival we want to hear them.

Peter Wardman
Event Director

 Posted by at 7:14 pm  Tagged with:
May 212013


There is a plan to extend the Fernleigh shared path into Dudley along a corridor that once was the rail line into the Dudley mine. This branch line into Dudley was built in 1892 extending from the Fernleigh rail line in order to service the coal mine which was located at the site of the sports fields.  After the rail line closed in 1939 it became an access route for Dudley residents who would walk down the track to get passenger trains which ran till 1967 on the Fernleigh line.

In 1977 a Newcastle residents group (NCM) was formed with the aim of ensuring that these rail lines would not be submerged by urban development. Work commenced on the Fernleigh cycleway as a joint venture between Newcastle and Lake Macquarie City councils. In 1999 a draft plan was completed which detailed all the routes, including the one into Dudley along the rail corridor. The Fernleigh track is now considered to be one of the best 10 Cycleways in the world, largely due to the almost unspoilt natural environment of the track which isolates it from the urban surroundings. Its popularity amongst residents and tourists shows that there is a great need for more of this type of facility, especially if it services schools and connects community facilities.

After the Dudley branch line closed part of it became Foxdale Ave. and the cutting at Burwood road was filled in as a replacement for the bridge that used to take car traffic over the rail line. The path from Burwood Rd to the Fernleigh Track and the Railway to Ocean St. cuttings have became overgrown with weeds and choked by debris. Pedestrian traffic is now small and those that do walk through use rough walking tracks on top of the cuttings.

LMCC conducted a survey in 2012 that overwhelmingly showed support for extending the track along the old railway line into Dudley. There was also a belief by council that there should be a path into Charlestown and to accommodate this the pathway group submitted a modified plan that meet this requirement. See the attached Maps. The new plan uses all of the proposed Dudley to Fernleigh path but extends this by using existing pathways from Whitebridge school and safe streets along the Flaggy creek reserve. This amended plan as shown now connects with 3 schools, the Charlestown swimming pool and shopping center.   For the more serious bike rider it would provide an alternative loop that could take in Dudley and Redhead with visits to the Awabakal Nature area for the nature lovers or a choice between the pubs in Dudley or the Churches in Redhead.  

The benefits that would result from this path are numerous: it would provide a safe path for students to the schools, encourage healthy activities of walking or cycling, decrease car usage and road congestion, and with continued landcare work will convert what was once a waste land into an attractive natural bushland setting. The actual pathway will be the old rail line which will only occupy about 3m of the corridor owned by council. This corridor ranges from 15 to 25m in width which means that the planned regeneration program will see a 5 to 10m buffer zone between residents and track users. Within the cuttings the track will be up to 5m lower than the adjacent houses and residents will be unable to see people on the track .

Principals at the schools have been supportive of the plan as were the Cycleways movement and most residents. There are some issues to be resolved, everyone wants a cycleway and council does not see this one as important as others. We have suggested that LMCC should use a low impact approach to the construction, minimizing fencing and using compressed gravel rather than tar or concrete for the path. However some would prefer a harder surface, which is more suitable for prams and wheel chair use. Opinions on this approach and to other issues differ so please let us know your thoughts.

Dudley Pathway GroupCharlestown