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Rail trails are shared-use paths recycled from abandoned railway corridors. Usually managed by local councils for the enjoyment of the general public, rail trails can be used for a range of purposes including walking, cycling and horse riding.

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Rail Trails for New South Wales

Lilydale to Warburton Rail Tail

Bass Coast Rail Trail

Collie-Darkan Rail Trail

Crater to Coast Rail Trail

Biographies for committee members and State representatives 2019

Damian McCrohan
Damian has had a lifelong interest in railways and found cycling a great way to get around. When it became obvious in the mid -90s there were too many closed railways to keep as heritage railways he became interested in the new concept of rail trails to preserve the history and provide a great facility for people to walk and ride. Over the last 20 years he has helped produce the guidebooks, calendars, magazine and website while getting around to almost all open and prospective rail trails in Australia. One of the great rewards from this is getting out and enjoying our wonderful rail trails with his family, and meeting the many passionate people involved with rail trails. In between this Damian works as an electrical engineer.

Steven Kaye
Steven has a lifetime interest in railways, cycling and ‘the great outdoors’. He began using Victoria’s rail trails with his family over a decade ago, enjoying the history, natural environment and safety provided. Consequently he joined the Rail Trails Australia committee in 2008 to become more involved and hopefully improve/complete the trail network. He was involved in the management of Medical services of the Great Victorian Bike Ride for a number of years. When he gets time away from his General Practice, he now leads groups of people to cycle in rural locations, using rail trails throughout Australia and New Zealand, providing regional economic benefit and brilliant experiences for the participants. In between this Steven is a medical practitioner.

Frank Kinnersley
Frank became interested in rail trails from his keen interest in walking and cycling. This reconnected his interest in railways that had been inspired by family who had worked there. Frank became involved in Rail Trails Australia and subsequently found himself on the committee. He has volunteered in many roles with Bicycle Network and continues in several roles related to walking and cycling advocacy. He worked for many years in truck engineering and related areas.

Gary Allan
Gary has been riding a bike since a young age. He is a supporter of conservation and protection of the natural environment, which combined with his interest in railway history led him to Rail Trails Australia. His interests are bushwalking, canoeing, cross-county skiing, and photography. He is working through riding all of the rail trails in Australia, but his main cycling ambition is to ride downhill from the Gulf back to Melbourne. Gary is also Treasurer of the Victorian National Parks Association.

Alan Abrahams
Alan Abrahams Bio 660Alan has been a keen cyclist for many years. He was introduced to Victoria’s rail trails over a decade ago, joined RTA a few years later and in August 2015 joined RTA as the Administration Officer. Over the past several years he has managed to explore most of Victoria’s rail trails as well as some in South Australia and Queensland. He is very interested in supporting the raising of awareness of rail trails and their benefits and the subsequent development of rail trails throughout Australia. In addition to cycling, he is also a keen bushwalker. His career has been focused on Program Management with a strong emphasis on business and productivity improvement.

John O’Brien

John worked for Telstra as a Technician and Technical Officer for 35 years, and has been a keen cyclist for over 40 years, riding a lot of the “Big Rides” in NSW, VIC, WA, and QLD. It was while doing some of these rides that he discovered “rail trails” and was hooked, eventually joining Rail Trails Australia and becoming part of the rail trail committee. He is also the state representative for NSW, which currently has no rail trails on ex-government land. He is working with Rail Trails Australia and RT4NSW to lobby politicians and local councils in an endeavour to have the situation changed. Over the years his goal has been to explore and ride on every available rail trail that he could find. As a keen photographers as well as cyclists, rail trails are the perfect way to indulge both passions.

Karen Wilson
Karen first encountered rail trails when she rode from Lilydale to Warburton, and was so impressed with the idea that she became a member of Rail Trails Australia the following week. The rail trail concept combines a number of Karen’s passion - travel, being outdoors, cycling, sustainable transport, history and community. So when she saw a callout for volunteers in Connections, she joined the committee and as an editor. Karen has enjoyed using her skills from her career in environmental and conservation policy and programs to help advocate for and promote rail trails. She looks forward to enjoying more of Victoria’s trails and continuing to be involved with the rail trails community.

Kathy Furney
Kathy worked in the Attorney Generals department for over 30 years and after retiring was able to indulge her love of holidays which involve hiking or bike riding. This eventually led to the discovery of "rail trails" in other states and subsequent involvement in Rail Trails Australia. She is a strong advocate for cycling, working with her local council as well as being involved with Rail Trails Australia and RT4NSW, in their endeavour to introduce rail trails to NSW, where there are no rail trails on ex government land.

Mark Linnett
Mark has had an interest in railways from an early age, influenced by his father. This has grown stronger over the years, and now includes the history and research of closed lines. He is a long-time member of Australian Railway Historical Society (Qld Div) and has been an active member of their tours for more than 25 years. Mark has been part of many farewell tours for the closing of railway lines, after which he watched the corridor deteriorate. He became aware of the rail trail movement in Victoria and has been a member of Rail Trails Australia for many years, becoming the Queensland representative in 2012. He is a keen cyclist and enjoys using the rail trails and meeting and talking with other users. He studied at UQ Gatton Campus, having had a variety of employment roles, but is currently working in the painting supply industry.

Will Owens
Will lives near Coogee in Sydney’s eastern suburbs. He works full time in the city, but was born and raised in Melbourne. He is a weekend non-Lycra cyclist. He is old enough to have travelled by train on Victoria’s original rail trail, Wangaratta to Bright. In Will's opinion, rail trails are the best way to re-use the old alignments for multi-purpose recreation (not just bikes - he is happy to share). He has cycled on a number of trails in Victoria, SA, Qld and on the few trails available in NSW. NSW has particular barriers to the re-use of defunct rail lines, many of which pass through world-class landscapes which would attract global tourism interest if developed into trails.

James Pearse
James is a civil engineer based in Perth, Western Australia. His interest in rail trails started after working on a series of long-term cycling strategies for regional WA. Growing up in the Wheatbelt region, James’s interest in rail trails sits at the intersection of three of his passions - civil engineering, active transport and regional economic development. James commenced as the WA representative for Rail Trails Australia in 2019.

 

 

Walking and riding in safety while enjoying the regional towns and beautiful countryside of New South Wales: rail trails offer this possibility ... but are a dream at the moment on NSW’s many disused government rail corridors.

NSW is missing out

All the images on this page are from rail trails on government rail corridors in other states.

The people and regional businesses of NSW are missing out on the economic and health benefits that rail trails can deliver.

Overseas and in all other states of Australia rail trails attract both local and widespread use, help bind communities and are destinations for tourists.

Why no rail trails in NSW?

There are virtually no rail trails in NSW primarily due to complex issues unique to NSW.  At times there have been concerns from some adjacent landholders, concerns addressed or unfounded on established interstate rail trails.

The Fernleigh Track Rail Trail, on a former Newcastle private coal line, is now a popular local resource and convincingly demonstrates that the people of NSW would enthusiastically adopt and use rail trails in NSW.

Short term goal: let’s get started

Feasibility studies undertaken for rail trails in several areas already provide convincing arguments for the benefits trails will bring. It is now time to establish initial pilot rail trails on these to conclusively demonstrate the benefits of regional rail trails here in NSW.

Northern Rivers Rail Trail (132km)

Between Casino and Murwillumbah in northern NSW.

Tumbarumba to Rosewood (21km)

Part of the proposed Riverina Highlands Rail Trail.

Gundagai (4km)

Part of the proposed Murrumbidgee Valley Rail Trail.

Show support for rail trails

Following the fantastic Launch of Rail Trails for NSW in March we now need to show the state government that there is broad support for the widespread development of rail trails in New South Wales before the railway corridors degrade further and are lost forever. Write to your local state member and ask for rail trails to be established in NSW.

You can find NSW parliamentarians’ contact details here

The Ministers to contact are:

Minister for Transport, Andrew Constance, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Minister for Tourism and Major Events, Stuart Ayres, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Minister for Regional Development, John Barilaro, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Minister for Health, Jillian Skinner, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Shadow ministers to contact are:

Mick Veitch MLC, Shadow Minister for Primary Industry, Lands, Water and Western NSW, who introduced the rail trails bill, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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More information

See descriptions of the many potential trails around New South Wales.

These are also summarised in our Rail Trails for NSW Flyer

NSW Rail Trails for NSW Flyer Web

The Rail Trails for NSW team is dedicated to getting rail trails established in NSW. Also refer to their Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/railtrailsnsw

NSW logo RTforNSW

 

NSW V13-120 Lilydale Maroondah Hwy Bridge 2011-08 DSC 0625 FAMILY

NSW V13-288 Killara 2008-04 5169 HORSE

NSW V41-407 Porepunkah Rail Trail Cafe 2012-06 ECONOMY P1030230

NSW V63-359 Dinmont 2011-11 5340

Rail Trail to Nowhere!

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A common cause of this is trying to access the appendices of the Railtrails Establishment Guidelines PDF file or the Railtrails Signage Guide PDF. These appendices are only available on the CD ROM which can be obtained by contacting Railtrails Australia. See the Contact Us page.

If you arrived here via a different link it is possible that link is broken and has escaped our attention. Please let us know which page you were on and which link you clicked.

 

Otherwise, you can use the menus above or click here to return to the Railtrails Australia Home page.

Advertise on Australia’s Premier Rail Trails Website

Why?

AdvertiseRail Trails Australia's website is the place to go for information about rail trails Australia wide.  It contains a wealth of information about walking and riding rail trails including maps, gradient profiles, trail descriptions and features. Rail Trails Australia also supports individuals and groups involved in rail trail development and marketing with resources to support their work. 

Our website is the key go-to place for visitors to research and plan their trips. Cyclists and walkers often spend a number of days in a region, seeing local sights and sampling local fare, and checking out local arts, crafts and other attractions. They are looking for information about any return trail transport options, where to stay, eat and drink, where to get extra bike gear or have repairs done, and what other interesting or ‘must see’ things to do there are after exploring a rail trail.

Our website is the first listed for most rail trails when doing a web search. Now we want to make it even better with information and links for key local trail services that support the rail trail experience. We welcome advertisements for services such as bike hire, cafes, wineries, accommodation options, transport connections and nearby attractions. 

Join us! By listing your business, you not only promote your business, but share the benefits of the many and growing number of rail trail visits - and demonstrate how rail trails are dynamic, supported experiences.

 Listings are displayed under Support Services and Attractions for each rail trail. For an example refer to the Lilydale to Warburton Rail Trail description, under the “Description” tab.

How?

Your listing will be displayed under Support Services and Attractions for your chosen rail trail.

  • Your listing will contain your business name and a one line summary of your business, on one rail trail homepage with a logo and link to your website contact details (or alternatively phone or email)
  • If desired we can provide regular statistics on how many times your link was selected.
  • The price for this service is $99 per year.
  • As part of the package you will receive a posted copy of our Rail Trail Connections magazine to display in your business to generate additional interest in rail trails. You can elect to receive an electronic copy as an alternative.

To advertise please go to the item in our Online Store on our website to sign up.

Thank you for supporting the pleasure and enjoyment of rail trails!

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