Community Rides | Teens and Tweens Rides | This Is How We Roll

We’re pumped to be able to roll out a series of bike rides for our community. With assistance from Healthy Heart of Victoria and Mount Alexander Shire Council we have a ride to suit most ages and abilities. We’re working in collaboration with our friends from Bike Bendigo, so you get the best instructors in the region!
Bookings essential!

Welcome to CycleSafe

cropped-bike-photos-for-council-presentation-022.jpgCycleSafe is about moving everyday people, everyday, as safely, enjoyably, and sustainably as possible, inclusive of walkers, mobility vehicle users, dog walkers and other shared path users. We are about offering choice for transport options, and are not anti-car.

We will represent the eyes and ears of cyclists, collecting valuable information about safety and cycling issues, and provide a central point to disseminate information back to them.

We wish to expand the current network to improve routes through town and the connection to the off-road network,  making cycling safer and more enjoyable for commuting and recreational cyclists.  In this way we wish to provide for a healthier community and a healthier environment.  By improving the network, we also hope to improve the tourist amenity, and therefore enhance the prosperity of businesses in the region.  See our ‘About’ page for more information.

Become a part of our supporter base by subscribing to our blog to add strength to our negotiations with council.  Your time is valuable so short blogs are posted only once or twice per month.

Subscribe to this blog by clicking on the link to the right if on desktop, or the link at the bottom of the posts if on a tablet or mobile.

Summer Newsletter

In this addition:

  • On Your Bike – Castlemaine Summer Workshop – Recap
  • Newstead Gets Bike Active
  • Bikes on Buses

As always you can stay in the loop with all of CycleSafe’s events and updates on Facebook. Keep on riding.

Penny Gilbert
CycleSafe Mount Alexander

‘On Your Bike’ Summer Workshop Castlemaine

We had a ripper bunch of 10 – 12 year olds participate in our two day ‘On Your Bike’ workshop this summer. For the fourth year in a row we have offered this bike skills and confidence workshop and it’s really become part of Castlemaine summer to-do list for tweens.

The group worked on basic skills in the gardens to refine and hone those ‘dar… I do know how to ride a bike already’. With a focus on breaking, taking off efficiently and using gears for less effort riding. Later, we had fun on an obstacle course to train these young people to be good bike citizens. They had to navigate pedestrians with a bell and clear, timely “bikes coming”; a dog walker, an opening car door and other cyclists. Hilariously, there were great acting skills employed by the non-riders to make it a real-life situation.

Simple bike mechanics were practiced with new trainer, Alex Keeble, showing each participant how to change their own tyre tube – useful stuff for any kid on a bike.

We have two more ‘On Your Bike’ Workshops set for the Autumn holidays, Monday the 11th (Newstead) and Tuesday the 12th(Castlemaine) of April. Watch out for the posters and sign your tween up.

Newstead Gets Bike Active

New group on the block, ‘Newstead Walks and Wheels’ has teamed up with Healthy Heart Victoria, a state government initiative, and CycleSafe Mount Alexander to bring a series of bike related events to the small town with it all happening.

There’s a bike maintenance workshop and the group has mapped out a series of cycling routes around town from 5 to 25 kilometres, some of which will be included in the four ‘Community Rides’ from February to April. We’re also running an ‘On Your Bike’ Workshop on the 11th of April. Bookings essential (so we can contact you of any changes) via try booking or scan the QR on the posters below.

The first Community Ride is this weekend, Sunday the 13th of February.

  • All rides are on roads – some gravel and others sealed. Get out your bike Newstead and get your gravel on!

Bikes on Buses

The new front mounted bike racks coming to local bus services.

We were delighted to see The Castlemaine Mail front page announce that bikes will be able to be carried on buses travelling all local routes in Bendigo, Castlemaine and Heathcote.

CycleSafe supports the initiative, which gives people options – whether it’s being able to jump on a bus if you get caught in the rain, or have a flat, or whether it’s just too far to ride both ways. 

John, the bearded driver in the background of the photo, says he’s “impressed with the racks” and is keen to help the children he drives to the Steiner school transport their bikes to school for the regular supported rides home that the parents and teachers offer.

Racks mounted on the front of buses will carry up to two bikes each and drivers will be able to help passengers to load their bikes

Winter News

Welcome to CycleSafe’s Winter Newsletter.

We know it’s not quite winter but we’ve got so much to share we just couldn’t wait!

In this edition :

  • MOTHERLOAD the movie
  • Bubs On Bikes Cargo Bike Expo
  • Bike Riding Workshop for Parents
  • Community Ride Recap
  • Thanks to MASC
  • New minimum passing distance laws
  • Shape Mount Alexander

As always you can stay in the loop with all of CycleSafe’s events and updates on facebook.

Keep on riding.

Penny Gilbert

CycleSafe Mount Alexander

Triple Treat for Parents

MOTHERLOAD free screening

MOTHERLOAD follows director and new mother, Liz Canning as she explores motherhood in the digital age of climate change. Cargo bikes offer her a solution. Ultimately, Liz learns about the potential of the bike to be the “ultimate social revolutioniser”.

With our pals from Bike Bendigo, we have been given generous support from Healthy Heart of Victoria and the Mount Alexander Shire Council to screen this movie at The Phee Broadway Theatre on the 22nd of May at 7pm.

Bookings essential:

Please note: This is a free movie screening NOT a free breast screening event! 😂 two blokes I know have mistaken the purpose of the poster so far!

Cargo Bike [plus] Expo

Come and try all the ways you can carry your children on a bike!

Meet cargo-bike suppliers, bike shop owners and real people who ride with their children on board.

Ride cargo bikes, e-bikes, bikes with child seats and trailers

Free Paella by Big Pans Paella!

Bike Workshop for Parents

A follow up to bother above events is a bike workshop for parents. Recap basic skills, learn good routes through Castlemaine and meet other parents who want to ride more.

The brave folk of Campbells Creek set out to ride the proposed route for closing ‘the gap’ between Princess Street and the current track at the base of Honeycomb Road. Not always on our bike, but always up for an adventure, we made it through and continued on our leaf paved way to the Botanical Gardens. A shout out to you Campbells Creek you’re the biggest group ever to attend a Community Bike Ride!

Thanks to Mount Alexander Shire Council

This spot at the end of Lewis Drive has been a problem for quite some time. The track has washed out leaving a dangerously loose surface after two recent rains. Council has come up with a great solution! Now the water has a better way to get to the creek and we can all still use the path.

Penny did come across two perplexed council workers at the drain. They reported that it was still deemed unsafe by some folks. I did ask for some reflectors to be put on the black poles. Watch this space! *Tried and tested by Nala the Wonderdog.

Mount Alexander Shire Council is ready to listen!

Let’s let them know how much we want to ride, how much we want to ride to the important places like the shops and the library, let’s let them know we want to do that safely! Put in more infrastructure to connect our trails and a way to get through the CBD. For that we need lots of voices. You have a voice, MASC are giving us open ears, let’s shout it out!

One minute survey QR code or visit:

CycleSafe Mount Alexander

is a group of local people who wish to support and promote safe cycling in the shire. We believe in active transport for the health of our community and our environment. We work with local groups and the Mount Alexander Shire Council to provide you with safer cycling options and skills.

New Hand Rail at Hargreaves Crossing near Western Reserve – Thanks Council!

crossing over Hargreaves St between Western Reserve and Tennis Courts

CycleSafe would like to express their appreciation to Council for installing a hand rail at the recently installed crossing on Hargreaves St. The crossing approach is on a rise up to the road, so it has been difficult to get started on the bike to cross the road. The handrail allows bike riders to remain with their feet on their pedals and to be able to also give themselves a little push off the rail to help get a start to cross the road. CycleSafe approached council to install the handrail.

We did notice one busy market day that there were several cars parked directly south of the crossing on Hargreaves street which meant vehicles coming from the south could not see the crossing, and people wanting to cross could not see approaching traffic without being on the road already. CycleSafe will be approaching Council to ensure parking allow for visibility of the crossing. Say tuned…

Have your say – Frederick St upgrade by 5pm tomorrow March 22!

If you haven’t already, we encourage you to fill in the council survey in the ‘Have your say’ section on the council’s website by 5pm tomorrow (Monday 22nd).  We apologise for the late notice. Volunteering sometimes is hard to keep up with!

Council are proposing to upgrade Frederick St which provides a fantastic opportunity to improve protected cycling routes in Castlemaine. Council still have cars and carparking dominating this street which we believe could be a beautiful, non-vehicle, connecting laneway which would enhance the town centre.

If you support cycle/pedestrian priority in Frederick St, -please submit your own thoughts to council, or copy and paste our comment to council below:

Frederick St has always been a crucial part of our intended connected shared trail network, earmarked for a two way route for cycling, mobility, and pedestrians connecting the Tourist Info at Market building (which links to Western Reserve and Forest  Ck trail, and later Campbells Ck trail), to library and historic council buildings, continuing Ed, Old Firestation, and is also a key part of connecting to railway station as well.

There is no reason that we can see that cars need to use Frederick st for getting from A to B.  Other streets provide that.. So, basically, the car access is for parking.  In a sense then, this is really prioritised as a car park strip.  And enhanced with some greenery and seats.  Who wants to hang out or take a lunch break in a car park?? with fumes?

We strongly believe this should be a two way car free zone with priority given to non-cars all the way from the market building to firestation café end (and to library). This could be supported in tourism as part of a town walk focussing on historic centre of Castlemaine.

We believe it would be useful to have a couple of disability parking spots allocated in here if necessary, and that other businesses that needed to use the street for access could have a permit to do so (and travel at 10km/h).  The general public do not need vehicle access to this street. 

This plan is guided by the Township Master Plan that was approved last year, but before the Walking/Cycling strategy has been done.  As we see it, the Master Plan should be informed by the WCS routes, not the other way round.  We implore council to amend their passing of the township plan if necessary to allow for non vehicle prioritised route in Frederick St.

Council has a significant opportunity to show leadership and vision for a friendlier, healthier, more attractive town centre taking us forward into a more connected, sustainable future.

We implore you to do so..

Autumn News

Welcome to CycleSafe’s Autumn E-news

Upcoming events, including our Community Rides, E-Bike Rides and a teens and tweens On Your Bike Workshop.

As the days are getting shorter, keep you lights flashing – even in the daytime. We’ve included some great tips from Trek below. And look out for the Light the Trail social night ride along the O’Keefe Trail in Bendigo.

Ride2School Day is on the 19th of March. You may see a more than average amount of children out rolling their way to school. St. Mary’s and Castlemaine schools are both holding events to encourage children to participate.

Check out these in more detail below.

You can stay up to date with all of our activities via our Facebook page

Keep on riding,

Penny Gilbert

Community Bike Rides

We’re keen to roll with you this Autumn, starting this Sunday! We will ride as far as we can until we turn back and roll towards the awaiting juice Bike!!!! Yay or juice! Yay for bike riding!

E-Bike Rides

Sue Tomkinson is out one Wednesday a month with all the know how to get you confident and getting to new places for coffee!

Autumn On Your Bike for teens and tweens

Our highly successful Summer On Your Bike workshop has had us inspired to run another for those who were at the beach last time. A one day workshop aimed at getting your tween more confident riding to all the best destinations in Castlemaine- the library, school and ice cream shops!

Time to Light Up!

As we ride into Autumn, you’ll notice the days are getting shorter. There is a high chance you’ll be riding in low light. Be sure to check your lights and use them day and night.

Studies show riding with flashing daylight visible light is the single best way for a cyclist to be seen by a driver. You’ll be 2.4 times more likely to be seen than a rider with no lights, even in the daytime. I’m looking at you Campbell’s Creek commuters…

National Ride2school Day is the 19th of March

This year CycleSafe is hosting an event at Castlemaine Steiner School and Kindergarten. We’ll be there with the incredible Paddy Toastie and his Velocopedes and our very own juice bike. This event will be held on Thursday the 1st of April and be a ride-home event. The children have the option to choose a supported ride home, yes, all the way from Muckleford! Go Steiner kids!

Appropriate that this years stickers are rainbow themed!