SBUG CHRISTMAS PARTY – Thursday 28th November, starting at 6:00pm.
All members, partners and friends are welcome to attend the 2019 SBUG Christmas Party which will be held at the Cambewarra Estate Winery Restaurant, 520 Illaroo Road, Bangalee, just 230m west of Hockeys Lane.
The meal will include pre-dinner nibbles, mains, desserts and surprises for only $39 for members and $49 for non-members.
Please make payment into our SBUG Social Account;
Bendigo Bank: BSB 633000,
Account Name: Shoalhaven Bicycle User Group Inc.,
Account No: 156 821 456
Don’t forget to add your name in the payment reference box of the Electronic Funds Transfer so we know who has paid.
For further details contact Anne Cornish on 0413 389 376 or Les 0477 902 590
WEEK AWAY AT MYRTLEFORD VICTORIA
This year’s October away ride for SBUG members is to Myrtleford, Victoria from 28th October to 1st November staying at Myrtleford Holiday Park 8 Lewis Ave Myrtleford ph 03 5752 1598. All rides are on sealed trail trails or roads, suitable for Road or Mountain bikes.
We have powered sites and Bluegum, Wattle and Snowgum Cabins on hold. When booking quote SBUG or Cornish to find booking. We need to book by end of September. If you are looking to share a cabin, ring Les 0477 902 590 or Anne 0413 389 376. To ensure a spot the sooner you let us know the better.
Remember Top Parks members get 10% discount. Please contact Les to register your attendance.
Those interested in attending the Christmas in July dinner on 27th July, 6:00pm, at the ‘Butter Factory’ restaurant, please note we need names , money and choice of food by 13th July. If you would like to bring friends and make a party all are welcome, come along and have some fun. Remember to dress for Christmas.
Contact Anne at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org or phone Anne 0413 389 376, or Les 0477 902 590 for more details.
The SBUG Christmas Party will be held at the “Dish and Spoon” Cafe, 1A Scenic Drive, Nowra, opposite the Nowra swimming pool, on 30th November at 6:00pm. The menu will be Portuguese Tapas of your choice.
All those wishing to attend the Christmas function need to pay a deposit of $25 per person into the SBUG Social Account as soon as possible so numbers can be finalised.
Bendigo Bank, BSB: 633 000, Account Name: Shoalhaven Bicycle User Group Inc., Account Number: 156 821 456
Please ensure that you include your name as the payment reference so we know who has paid.
For further details contact Anne Cornish on 0413 389 376 or Les 0477 902 590
SBUG are organising a scenic cruise on the Port Hacking River on Wednesday, 12th September, 2018.
The three (3) hour cruise is run by Cronulla River Cruises and starts at 10.30am from the Public wharf, Tonkin Street, Gunnamatta Bay (behind the Cronulla Railway Station).
Morning tea is provided along with an interesting commentary of the history of the area. Fares are: Adults $35, Concession $25. Pay onboard the boat.
Bookings are essential. A booking has been made with the cruise company and a holding deposit paid by SBUG. Those interested in attending MUST contact Jan or John Van Duin on ph 4422 8991 or mob 0401 439 310 to reserve your seats. The cut-off date for reservations is Friday, 17th August.
Some people will be travelling by train to Sydney. Train times are as follows;
Catch train from Kiama Station. Departs 7.55am. Arr: Sutherland 9.35am. Depart Sutherland 9.51am. Arr: Cronulla 10.06am.
Afternoon Train Timetable. Depart Cronulla 14.32pm. Arr: Sutherland 14.49pm. Depart Sutherland 14.55pm. Arr: Kiama 16.35pm.
For any further details contact Jan or John on the above numbers.
Bicycle riders are one of the most vulnerable road users, and riding two abreast make them more visible. Two riders cycling side by side can be seen from much further away, than a single rider. Being able to see riders from a further distance will enable drivers to prepare to overtake the riders safely, in accordance with the Minimum Passing Distance law.
Riding two abreast also allows the motorist to overtake the group of riders more quickly as the line is only about half as long. This allows the vehicle to pass the group less time (giving for moving in and out to the correct location on the road). A good overtake is safer for everyone, the other vehicles on the road, the driver and their passengers and all the riders on the road in the group.
Broken Centre Line Overtaking is legal, when safe to do so.
Unbroken Centre Line Overtaking is legal, when safe to do so.
What do cyclists need to know about riding two abreast?
Cyclists must be within 1.5 metres of each other when riding two abreast. A third rider can overtake these two riders, but cannot continue to ride beside them.
Riders should be courteous and consider other roads users around them, and if safe may change to single file in some circumstances.
What do drivers need to know when overtaking cyclists riding two abreast?
Only overtake when it is safe and legal to do so. We want all road users to get to their destinations safely.
Drivers in NSW must provide a minimum of 1 metre when overtaking 1 bike rider or multiple. When the speed limit is 60km/h or under, drivers must provide 1 metre when overtaking – this is measured from the furthest point of vehicle (i.e. mirror) to the furthest point of the cyclists (i.e. handle bars, cyclists elbow). If the speed limit is over 60km/h, drivers must provide 1.5 metres of space when overtaking.
Drivers are able to cross double lines and go on painted islands to provide bike riders with this distance, if it is safe to do so.
A few seconds can save a life so please be patient. Our roads are shared spaces. Mutual respect and cooperation are the key to ensure everyone remains safe.
In May 2018, after a 2 year trial, the Minimum Passing Distance became permanent law in NSW. Providing space when overtaking cyclists, is helping to protect our most vulnerable road users.
What is the Minimum Passing Distance?
When driving 60km/h and under, a motor vehicle must provide bike riders 1 metre of space when overtaking.
When driving over 60km/h, a motor vehicle must provide 1.5 metres of space when overtaking.
The measurement is taken from the widest part of the bike (i.e. handle bars) to the widest part of the motor vehicle (i.e. a mirror)
Exemptions to the law that enable driver to provide bike riders with this space.
Drivers will be exempt from the following rules, as long as it is safe to pass the bicycle rider with at least a metre of space and they have a clear view of approaching traffic:
- Keep to the left of the centre of the road (two-way road with no dividing line)
- Keep to the left of the centre of a dividing line – broken and unbroken lines
- Keep off a flat dividing strip
- Keep off a flat painted island
- Driving within a single marked lane or line of traffic
- Moving from one marked lane to another across a continuous line separating the lanes
Extending the courtesy to paths
When riding on shared path and footpaths, we strongly encourage riders to give pedestrians and other riders 1 metre of space when overtaking.
SHOALHAVEN BICYCLE USERS GROUP
A HISTORY IN THREE PARTS
EARLY DEVELOPMENT STAGES
Before the early 1970s
Bicycles were used in many ways, for transport, for recreation and for competitive racing, Cycling of one sort or another has been in existence since early in the 19th century, but, before the 1970s; cycling clubs concentrated mainly on road riding and racing, and Mountain Biking (MTBing) as we have come to know it did not even exist. One exception was Cyclocross, a form of cycling in which crazy cyclists were willing to risk life and limb by riding ordinary bikes off road in difficult and dangerous terrain – only for the foolhardy, of course!
During the 70s and 80s, some American bike companies such as Gary Fisher and Specialised had been experimenting with the production of bikes specially built for recreational use, but it wasn’t until 1978 that they and their subsidiaries had been credited with introducing the first purpose built Mountain Bike (MTB). By 1986, MTBing had been launched as a separate sport, and it quickly spread worldwide. Consequently, throughout the 80s, 90s and first two decades of the 21st century, MTBing has moved from a little known sport to a mainstream activity.
A cycling enthusiast arrives in the Shoalhaven – 1993
In 1993, Terry Threlfall, a MTB enthusiast previously employed by Defence Department, had left the profession and had established a new recreational cycling business in the Shoalhaven region, This had two separate elements, number one was to operate a ‘bike hire’ service, and the other was to operate ‘one-day MTBing adventures’ for holiday makers or visitors, where he would both organise and lead the rides.
To do this, he bought his first set of MTBs from Bomaderry Cycles, then owned by Doug Holland, former professional road cyclist, and founder/secretary of the revived Nowra Cycle Club (NCC). Doug had an idea that might help Terry’s new project and showed him recent correspondence from Bicycle NSW which had asked him, Doug, to call a meeting to try to set up an off-road cycling group for his NCC members. In fact the Bicycle NSW request was a general one sent out to prominent community members like bike shop owners to encourage them to set up ‘cycling groups’, the precursor to the Shoalhaven Bicycle Group (SBUG).
However, because both were too busy with their other interests at the time, nothing much happened. A couple of years later, now aware that Terry was having success, Doug again called him about running one-day MTBing adventures around the Shoalhaven, and asked him specifically about helping his contingent of young NCC racing members. The fact was that now many of them now also owned one of these new-fangled MTBs, but had no idea where they could ride them to their full potential. Doug’s motivation was possibly not entirely altruistic – perhaps he may have felt he was in danger of losing some of his young members to clubs in Sydney and elsewhere, because he knew that organised mountain bike activity was already thriving there!
Terry joins the NCC
Terry then officially joined the Nowra Cycle Club not only to advance and implement his future plans, but also for insurance and public liability purposes. He then started organising monthly Sunday morning off road bush rides (quite challenging for himself) in places like Currambene forest, Bamarang, Yalwal, Comberton Grange and Jervis Bay. Doug Holland was right, the rides took off spectacularly, and on some Sundays between twenty and thirty riders turned up. All were much younger, fitter and faster than Terry himself, so the normal ride pattern was that he would give directions for the first few kilometres, the group would go off at a cracking pace, and then Terry, panting and puffing, would catch up with them sitting on their bikes, arms folded, waiting for further directions.
As word got around over the next two years, they were joined by other recreational bike riders, without any particular connection with the NCC, many just looking for some group to go cycling with. In contrast, and simultaneously, Doug’s young fast, racing club based riders began drifting off, having gained the knowledge to organise their own challenges, like racing up and down Meryla Pass after work! Now the puffing and panting group had grown to include much older people like Jim Florence, Tony Farmilo, and Tom McDonald!
Pre – SBUG Launch – 1997
In addition to the above proceedings between Terry, Doug and the NCC, a number of other enthusiasts had become very much involved in establishing a regular Shoalhaven cycling social group. Foremost among them was Naomi Spencer, a Naval Social Worker, and three military men, Chris Langmaid, Jim Florence and Tony Farmilo. The latter, newly posted to Albatross, had heard the talk about the need for an organised Shoalhaven recreational MTBing group, took the initiative and discussed the issues with the cyclists he met during those earlier NCC rides.
Naomi Spencer, in her Navy Social Worker role, and amongst her other commitments, was aware of the need to extend cycle paths and promote cycling as a credible alternative to driving to work, because too many young families were stranded at home with dad taking the car to work .This led to weekly lunch time meetings at Albatross over a period of 18 months, during which time people joined/left and contributed to researching and planning for our BUG.
Meetings were held during 1996 and early 1997. Terry, Tony and Jim obtained the appropriate paperwork from Bicycle NSW, and having worked through it, called a public meeting to form such a group. All the above mentioned people were amongst those present at the inaugural Meeting, which was held one evening in August 1997 at Bridgeton House in Berry St Nowra (the meeting room of the Defence Community Organisation). More than thirty people attended, the Shoalhaven BUG was launched, and the first committee positions duly filled, with Tony as Secretary, his wife Donna as President and Chris Langmaid as Treasurer.
Regular SBUG Rides start under the new name
In 1997, the monthly Sunday morning rides previously run by Terry for the benefit of the NCC young riders were discontinued and immediately became the first official SBUG rides under their new name. A new format was soon established and implemented, which included a number of special features.
First, and by far the most significant feature, all rides were MTB only. Almost all the regular riders were now older, although with just one exception, all were under the age of 60, and all were in full or part-time employment. There were also a small but significant number of school-age riders.
Second, whereas initially there had been just one monthly ride, on Sunday mornings, rides now took place every Sunday morning
Third, Tony planned and led all the rides. In the latter days of the NCC rides, the starting point was usually Rotary Park South Nowra. However, when the weekly SBUG rides began, the starting point was usually the Shoalhaven Council Administrative Centre car park in Bridge Road.
Fourth, as time went by, many routes became far more ambitious, and the starting locations were now often more distant from Nowra central.
Within a year Terry presented a total of about 60 regional MTB rides to a committee established by Duncan Marshall, and which now included SBUG members such as Jim Florence and Tony Farmilo. The list of rides was eventually whittled down to about 35 and in year 2000 they were published in a booklet and on a CD entitled Shoalhaven Cycling Guide, and made available to the general public from the Shoalhaven Visitor Information Centres. They were both wide ranging, comprehensive, and became very popular. Terry was paid for his contribution but somehow Duncan managed to do it all within his otherwise impossibly busy road safety job.
Summary of the first 10 years
From 1997 to 2000, the SBUG membership continued to increase, although there was still only one Sunday ride weekly,. This situation changed when, on Tom McDonald’s retirement, he was asked to establish and lead a new Wednesday mid-week MTB ride, which operated quite successfully for the next few years. Though the numbers were usually moderate, these mid-week rides soon became accepted, and have continued to this day, currently led by Jan Furyk and Rod Pierce, though now on Thursdays. This was the basic pattern for the first ten years, but, by no means, does it tell the whole story.
For example, when Squadron Leader Farmilo was posted around 2001, the SBUG experienced a minor crisis, due to the fact that he had managed just about everything during those first few years. Terry then proposed the setting up of a new structure, which was duly accepted by the Committee. Now officially appointed ‘Rides Coordinator’, Terry, would be responsible for planning one month’s rides well ahead and having them published in “Push On”, incorporated in the Bicycle NSW monthly Magazine which all members received, Committee members and experienced riders then took turns to lead the rides, and their details were also published in the “Push On” section After a few years, Paul Coombes took on this task, and the feature continued until the magazine moved on into the email era.
Terry adds to his business interests
At this point, it’s both important and necessary to point out that the next two paragraphs describe events which, strictly speaking, are not actually part of SBUG’s history, but because they had such a massive positive impact, albeit indirect, on the group’s overall success, it would be remiss if they were not included.
The important change is that, in addition to his bike hire business and one-day MTB rides, Terry had also simultaneously expanded his business interests by operating a third and very much bigger element, officially known as “Terry’s Cycling Adventures”. These were almost exclusively multi-day rides, essentially 14, 5 or 3 days duration, and actually started just before the formation of the SBUG, the first one being from Nowra to Melbourne In 1996. They continued throughout those first ten or eleven years, and covered a huge geographical area from north of Brisbane to south of Adelaide. The 14-day rides were usually about 1,200km, with commensurate distances for the others, and the final one-off ride of nearly 2,000km took place over three weeks in 2007. Again, with few exceptions, they were exclusively MTB rides and many SBUG members participated.
Overall, these spectacular rides comprised more than one visit to the summit of Kosciusko, the Great Ocean Road, The Murray Valley, the Otway Ranges The Coorong Coastal Desert, the Brisbane area, Power’s Lookout, the Adelaide area and numerous mountain climbs and highlights in the Great Dividing Range from the Victorian High Country to west of Toowoomba in Queensland. And there were many others! Sydney to the Gong also started to become a regular ride, as did The Harbour Bridge Ride.
An Impressive Very Special SBUG Ride
The single most impressive SBUG ride was the Centenary of Federation Bike Ride in May 2001, when 35 members and friends rode from Nowra to Canberra via Nerriga and Tarago over a period of three days. A few were lucky enough to have 3 more days to ride back to Nowra after the celebrations via the Araluen Valley, Moruya and Batemans Bay). In Canberra, we were joined by many thousands of other cyclists who had ridden from every corner of the continent to get there. Two cycling friends of the Shoalhaven SBUG, Luke and Marie Wensing, both senior professionals at the Australian National University, took a complete year’s sabbatical to organise that huge undertaking.
Big changes take place after 2007.
There are considerable differences in the way SBUG has operated since 2007. At that time, two unrelated events occurred which together significantly changed the status quo.
First, after Terry decided it was time to call it a day after his hectic and amazingly successful 10 years, which included him leading no less than fifty two-week rides alone. Simultaneously, he reduced his overall involvement in all routine SBUG matters, and consequently some important changes were inevitable.
Second, though the two events are not connected in any way, two regular members, Bob Burton and Tom Hemington, both dedicated MTBers, suddenly decided to dust off their road and racing bikes on Saturday mornings and started a regular 40km road bike ride to and from Greenwell Point. Originally the ride included a significant coffee break at Linda’s Anglers Rest. This road ride soon became an established fixture on the SBUG rides calendar.
Third, at approximately the same time, two more regular mid-week rides were launched, one a 30km ride on Wednesdays to the Comerong Island ferry and the second on Mondays a 50km ride to Berry and back via Broughton Creek, Back Forest and Bryce’s roads on Mondays. During the first few years of the latter, there was still several rough unsealed kilometres on the Bryces/Back Forest section, which prompted most riders to continue using their MTBs, and this in turn gave them the opportunity to negotiate Swamp Road’, a short cut yes, but more often than not a very wet one! Thus the single regular MTB ride left was Jan Furyk’s mid-week one, though on Sundays there are still regular combined MTB and road rides.
Current regular one-day rides
Summarising, the current situation is that the SBUG now has five regular rides per week, with one every day except Tuesday and Friday, but with one dedicated MTB ride, plus an occasional Sunday combined road/MTB ride.
Other multi-day rides and social activity
During the past five or six years, several entrepreneurial members have added a welcome new dimension to our range of activities, not experienced since the early SBUG years. Some have since left the Group, but others have taken their place and successfully organised a wide range of activities. Foremost among them are the organisation and management of three, four and five day rides, but they also include the organisation of a diverse range of social and cultural interests. For the majority of this latter activity, SBUG is indebted to the contemporary and continuing efforts of Les and Anne Cornish.
Regions visited include the Central West, Far South Coast of NSW Victorian rail trails and High Country. Various places of interest have been visited, concerts attended, funds raised for charitable institutions and advocacy work carried out toward the improvement and betterment of road conditions and cycleways
OFFICE BEARERS AND MEMBERSHIP
During the life span of the SBUG many hundreds of bicycle riders have participated in at least one ride, By the year 2000, less than 4 years since the Group was launched, 536 cyclists had taken part in at least one SBUG ride! Clearly it is beyond the capacity of this document to name most of them. However, almost a complete record of correspondence, AGM and Monthly Minutes have been saved ‘on line,’ during the entire 20 year period, which would facilitate any research into other matters pertaining to the life of the BUG should there be a requirement.
Nevertheless it would be remiss not to acknowledge those who have made both a significant and lengthy contribution to the overall success of the Group during the years since its formation. Many of them have made a positive contribution to a particular position, though often only for only a very brief period, and again too numerous to mention. In contrast, other members have held executive committee and other positions continuously for many years, as listed below.
Life Membership is an honorary award given to a member who has given long and meritorious service to the BUG above and beyond normal expectations, and or has made an outstanding contribution to the aims and objectives of the BUG. Currently, three BUG members have received this award:
Patron (Position first Initiated 2007)
2007 to ….. Tom McDonald
1997 to 2000 Donna Farmilo
2000 to 2001 (Apr) Chris Langmaid
2001 to 2008 (Sep) Cathy Bennett
2009 to 2010 Cindy Florence
2010 to 2014 Jim Florence
2014 to ……. Mel Gillott
2012 to 2015 Bob Lavender
1997 to 2010 Jim Florence
2010 to 2017 Julie Bourke
2017 to …… John Wooster
2000 to …… Judi Puru
2012 to ………… Kathy Beckenham
2013 to ……… Wayne Beckenham
1998 to 2005 Kathy and Wayne Beckenham
2005 to 2013 Jan Furyk
2013 to 2016 Wayne Beckenham
2016 to ……. Jim Florence
2010 to ……. Peter Hewlett
2012 to …….. Les and Anne Cornish
2014 to 2015 Bob Lavender
2015 to ……… Wayne Beckenham
Members remaining active since the Group’s foundation 1997
Jim Florence Tom McDonald Cathy Bennett Wayne Beckenham Kathy Beckenham Peter Hewlett Judi Puru Peter Steele
OTHER HISTORIC EVENTS
22 July 1997. Steering Committee is formed with Guy Cooper, Naomi Spencer, Rod McDonald, Chris Langmaid, Duncan Marshall Tony Farmilo, and is tasked with defining the role and rules of the new SBUG.
24 September 1997 Group holds its inaugural meeting to elect a committee. This meeting also doubled as the inaugural AGM and 14 members attended. Of the 14, only Jim Florence (elected Secretary) remains a Group member 20 years on.
22 September 1999 Group lobbies hard for the construction of the Collingwood Beach cycleway, which was opened a year later in September 2000.
2000 During the early part of the century, Ernie Fenske, a retired engineer and keen Group member with a passion for MTBing, single-handedly, voluntarily and comprehensively surveyed the local Currambene Forest in order to establish mountain bike trails. The project took a year to complete and the result was four different trails, with four different degrees of difficulty, all carefully marked with colour coded triangular metal discs. Relevant detailed maps are held and distributed by the visitors Information Centre.
2001 The ‘Sydney to Gong’ ‘RTA Cycle Sydney’ ‘Centenary of Federation’ rides were all four very significant events held in one calendar year and which were extremely productive in furthering SBUG’s progress. The publication of the ‘Shoalhaven Cycling Guide’ also occurred in the same year.
2002 With the assistance of a few SBUG members, Terry Threlfall organised the collection of hundreds of unwanted bicycles, all models and makes, and for male, female, young and old. The team serviced and repaired them, and they were then shipped for distribution to the citizens of East Timor.
2005 SBUG participates in fund raising by way of ‘Relay for life’ organisation, in conjunction with the Australian Cancer Council.
2007 The Group sees the end of an era with the sale of Terry’s Cycling Adventures
2008 Group Vice President, Bob Lavender was the SBUG representative on the RMS community forum, a role which was concerned with the aim of getting the ‘Shoalhaven Bike Plan’ resurrected, in addition to his initial role in getting the SBUG website up and running, and as the ongoing task of webmaster.
2008 Monday, Thursday and Saturday rides are now well established
2008 In that year Social Cycling Weekends were almost exclusively organised and managed by SBUG Treasurer Judi Puru, Each attracted about 150 participants. A hundred plus cyclists riding down Junction Street was a sight to see. During the weekends, visits to the Fleet Air Arm Museum were arranged and conducted
2010 In our other role as representatives of the local cycling community, Jim Florence played a leading role in pushing the Shoalhaven City Council to formulate a long overdue Bike Plan. Group still needs to monitor its development to ensure the Council maintains its commitment.
2011 When the Group became incorporated in 2011, as a requirement of the Department of Fare Trading, it was a milestone in the SBUG history, as the Group then became a legal entity with a formal Constitution. Consequently, the Group now also has a membership roll with a modest yearly fee rather than the gold coins we used to collect on Sundays and Thursdays. Finally, being incorporated and a legal entity also gives us more credibility when working with others such as the Council and RTA.
2012 SBUG Website established
2014 Revised membership renewal and subscription format introduced.
2017 During March, at a special social celebration, SBUG celebrates its 20th anniversary. Certificates of appreciation were presented to Naomi Spencer, Duncan Marshall and Terry Threlfall, for their contribution during the Group’s earliest beginnings.
24 November 2017
1 This history would not have been possible without the most valuable assistance from Jim Florence, Wayne Beckenham and Terry Threlfall. Jim has faithfully and meticulously kept the Group Minutes and Correspondence during his long years as Secretary, for which I am truly indebted.
2 The Group is a dynamic organisation, well led and managed, with an enterprising and hard working executive committee, wholly committed to ensure its continuing success.
3 Though much research has gone into the accuracy and recording of names, places and events which are the subject of this initial historical document, there will no doubt be a number of discrepancies in the detail, both in commission and omission, for which the author apologises.
4 Therefore, with regard to item 3, the author will be pleased to receive constructive comments or clarification, and the necessary corrections will be implemented wherever possible and applicable.
Tom McDonald – November 2017