Neville Grubb: A glance back at the development of the Otago Central Railtrail and a small cycle tourism business.
A success story that has rejuvenated and established businesses in the once declining rural district in the lower half of the South Island of New Zealand.
A cycle trail that has put the derelict arterial rail line, which serviced Central Otago, to good use when it closed in 1990. An initiative by the Department of Conservation and some visionary people from Otago who got together and established a recreational reserve extending 150 km from Clyde in Central Otago to Middlemarch within the boundaries of the Dunedin City Council.
The opportunities surrounding this trail could not be better portrayed than by the success of "Trail Journeys", one of the businesses working the trail which provides cycle hire (500 hire bikes), Guided Tours, accommodation and itinerary booking service and all the transport services that are required to support their bookings.
Neville Grubb, founding managing director will recap the history of the trail and his business from the early days as a cycle retailer and repair shop, to the present multi-million dollar tourism business.