Page 78 - Sandgate Guide December Issue
P. 78

 HISTORY SANDGATE Hoffy’s unofficial bike storage
ou might think the rugged roads of 1920s Sandgate, and the heavy, uncomfortable bicycles, would have deterred many from
taking up cycling.
But cycling grew in popularity throughout the decade, and became not just a fun pastime, but an important means of transportation as the suburb grew.
Messengers and delivery boys (sometimes with a sidecar attached to their machines), students and workers, they all took to cycling.
Recreational cycling was all the rage, too, with two-wheeled adventures to such popular picnic spots as Cash’s Crossing on the South Pine River and the more enthusiastic (and robust) pedalling to Caloundra for an outing. The Brisbane Telegraph reported in March, 1926 on a race and ‘paper chase’ from Nundah to Sandgate, with 16 riders enjoying “a swim and a sun bath there”.
The Sandgate Amateur Cycling Club flourished
in the 1920s and 1930s, with notable members including Ray Meredith, a distance racer who came close to both Olympic and Commonwealth games selection. He enjoyed long-distance riding recreationally too, thinking nothing of
a run of 125 miles or so. On one occasion he collapsed at Darra during one of these marathon jaunts and was left propped against a tree by his riding companion until his wife could come from Sandgate to collect him.
Inevitably, businesses sprung up in Sandgate to service the growing number of machines. A Mr Teddy Sandhoff had a bicycle store – IBIS (I Buy in Sandgate) Bicycles – on Rainbow Street; Ingram’s Cycles flourished in Deagon; and in 1927, Mr William Hoffman opened Hoffy’s Cycleworks in Bowser Parade.
Mr Eric Hendren, who had started work at Hoffy’s in 1942, took over the store in the 1970s, continuing Hoffy’s reputation for excellence. Mr Hendren’s handmade bike frames were popular among elite cyclists and carried Australian and New Zealand road and track cycling competitors in both the Olympic and Commonwealth games.
Hoffy’s was useful for commuters too – the yard of the shop becoming a de facto bike storage place for those rushing across Rainbow Street to the station.

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