Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Ride to Work: TBUG Freewheelers Challenge Trophy up for grabs

Bicyclists employed at Disability Services Queensland are working to keep the title of Toowoomba's “Best Represented” workplace at this year’s Ride to Work, which is to be held nationally on Wednesday, 12 October, when they aim to retain the Toowoomba Bicycle Users Group (TBUG) “Freewheelers Trophy”.

“Catch us if you can” is the challenge put out by Disability Services, a division of Department of Communities, to all other Toowoomba workplaces.

Across the nation, thousands of bike riders register for Ride To Work Day which is held every year in October, and some 20 percent of participants are new to cycling. The event is supported locally by the Toowoomba Bicycle Users Group (TBUG), Toowoomba Regional Council and other local businesses.

Co-ordinator of the TBUG, Mr David Allworth, is encouraging Toowoomba workplaces to get involved in 2011.

“Getting involved is easy. The day highlights the value of cycling to others as well as the need for it to be better catered for by all levels of government,” Mr. Allworth said.

“Workplaces simply need to appoint a workplace coordinator to register their workplace with the Ride To Work organisers on:

“Individuals also register their intention to ride to work that day, and automatically enter the competition for a new bike by registering here:

“Each workplace coordinator then encourages staff to ride on the day, and sends their rider tally, with a group photo if possible, to the judges at “ Mr. Allworth said.

“The workplace with the largest percentage of employees riding to work on 12 October will win the prestigious TBUG ‘Freewheelers Trophy’.

TBUG judges will select the winner and present the prize on the day, as the City Hall clock strikes 5.00 pm. ” Mr. Allworth said. The prize presentation get together will be at the nearby Oxygen Cafe, all welcome.

The staff at Disability Services have been encouraged to ride to work by Mr. Sandy Brown, who has been riding his faithful single-speed Speedwell bike for many years.
“Riding to work in Toowoomba just makes good sense given that it is not a large city to ride across but it can be a hard place to find a car park, particularly in the city centre,” Mr. Brown said.

“I don’t feel any need to buy special bike clothes. I just cycle in my work gear, like millions of people do in Europe.

“I save money on car parking, petrol, maintenance and gym fees, so it is very much a personal triple bottom line activity as far as I am concerned,” Mr. Brown said.

Ms. Anne Fallon, who also rides to work at Disability Services, said that riding to work had increased steadily over the last three years and staff were now agitating for an extra bike rack.

“When we won the TBUG Freewheelers Trophy last year it boosted interest among staff here. The more bike riders there are, just going where they need to go, the easier it will be for others to choose cycling as a commuting option,” Ms. Fallon said.

“If every workplace in Toowoomba encouraged their staff to ride to work, we could have a truly healthy city. For me, it’s a wonderful way to start and finish my workday. It clears the head and energises the body,” Ms. Fallon said.