It takes a village to raise a child, as the saying goes - and the same could be said for making a bike track, as Rutherford Junior High found out.

The school's bike track was formally opened last Tuesday by Whanganui District councillor Kate Joblin. It is the result of collaboration between the school, volunteers, Whanganui Police, local councils, ACC and Let's Go Whanganui.

Norman Gruebsch from Let's Go Whanganui said his organisation - which aims to get more Whanganui people cycling - had been working with Rutherford for about six months on the cycle track project.

"We provided funding through bikes and helmets," Mr Gruebsch said.


"We're also working with the kids so they learn cycle skills, and that includes going on the road."

Mr Gruebsch said Let's Go Whanganui currently worked with 19 local primary schools on cycling programmes. Rutherford is the only intermediate school at this stage.

"We hope to eventually bring our cycling programme into high schools as well."

Mr Greubsch said Rutherford was the first intermediate school in Whanganui to have its own dedicated bike track.

The track is more challenging than the flat tracks seen at local primary schools - it runs in a loop along the side of a bush-clad hill at the side of the school playing fields.

Rutherford Junior High principal Diane Henare said many people had contributed their time and energy to making the bike track happen, including local cycling enthusiasts Frank and Rosie Rawlinson, and Mrs Henare's husband, Sandy, who died unexpectedly earlier this month.

"They spent weekends here, working hard to get it finished."

Mrs Henare also acknowledged the assistance of Higgins and Loaders, two companies that both donated materials.

"The other really great thing about our bike track is that the kids had input into its design and build.

"This will be fantastic for our kids and for our community."