Lilydale Larder hopes to develop its business after the rail trail development is under way

Lilydale Larder has announced plans to develop a dedicated cycling hub to service the North East Rail Trail.

Bike hire, accommodation, a cafe, tastings, cycling tours and a bike shuttle service is being developed at the larder.  

Local architects have been contacted regarding a masterplan development for the site. 

Tasmanian Cycling Investor Group, the owner of Lilydale Larder, chairman Mike Walsh said the development would be done in stages, but not until the rail trail is underway. 

“As the rail trail develops towards the end of the year we’re looking to add some focus on bike hire and tours for people in the local area,” he said. 

The group will also focus on operating shuttle busses to various destinations in the North-East and Launceston. 

As the rail trail develops further the group will look at options for on-site accommodation. 

“The accommodation gives us the opportunity to link up to say the airport (or) the Launceston area and we’re aiming to collect people from Launceston for a few days. Then from Lilydale to Scottsdale they can move on,” he said. 

Mr Walsh said the group was unsure about what sort of accommodation would be on offer at the early stage of development.

“We think there are opportunities once we have the accommodation at Lilydale, we’d be aiming to establish a base in Scottsdale, then there is also a focus on and establishing a starting point in Launceston,” he said.

“Obviously a lot of people are talking about Derby and we want to see Lilydale to have a similar growth and vibrant tourism industry as what Derby has established.”

Mr Walsh hoped the community supported the rail trail plan to make it a “really good attraction to Tassie”.

Tasmanian Cycling Investor Group bought Lilydale Larder before Christmas last year and has focused on getting the cafe up-and-running.

Dorset mayor Greg Howard said the council hoped to be appointed manager of the North East railway line by June. 

He said the council was waiting on the final survey of the line and the re-write of the contact to say the line is no longer leased to TasRail.