December 24, 2013
MOST of them are too young to attend the inaugural Byron Bay Falls Festival, but a group of students from Mullumbimby High have been working on the site for the past week as part of a mentorship program to give them some experience in festival construction.
From building a bamboo structure for the Guerrilla Stage – a performance space specifically for local acts – to building timber furniture, putting up fencing and putting down floors, the crew has been involved in all aspects of setting up the site.
Four of the six participants are under 18 so won’t be able to attend the festival when it is in full swing from December 31 to January 3.
Jara Larter, who is 18 and will be attending, has also worked with the Blues Festival and completed an event management course at TAFE.
He said the Falls’ mentorship program was “a lot more on the physical side” compared to his office-bound experience at Blues Fest, but they had all enjoyed it.
Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson said with the number of festivals taking place across the Northern Rivers, there was an opportunity to design a curriculum with hands-on experience that would give participants a recognised qualification.
Having Falls Festival at the Yelgun site had not only given hundreds of local artists and performers work, but also created a space where 3000 local adults would go and party on New Year’s Eve, he said.
Cr Richardson said there was “a real split in the community” after last New Year’s Eve, with some people calling for no festivities at all.
Falls Festival organisers moved their date to incorporate New Year’s Eve and also donated $25,000 that would go towards Byron’s “Soul Street” family-friendly festivities in town.
“We have been able to respond, rather than wish the problem away,” Cr Richardson said.
December 13, 2013
December 6, 2013
RIOT police, alcohol prohibition, special event parking limits for non-residents and family entertainment will keep New Year’s Eve celebrations at Byron Bay under control, says Byron Shire mayor Simon Richardson.
“Last year we dodged a bullet – we didn’t have a riot… but we did have disrespect to the town and residents didn’t feel safe,” Cr Richardson said yesterday.
“Normally we get 5000 people into Byron Bay on New Year’s Eve, last year we attracted 20,000,” he said.
“It was like the perfect storm: beautiful weather and no other events in nearby towns to attract people away from Byron Bay.”
Cr Richardson this week met with Byron Bay police and confirmed riot police would be deployed to the town this New Year’s Eve.
Normally we get 5000 people into Byron Bay on New Year’s Eve, last year we attracted 20,000
This follows a decision by Roads and Maritime Services to cancel police-run roadblocks into the town.
Cr Richardson said the roadblock had been the centrepiece of the Safe Summer in Byron Bay initiative and described the RMS decision as “really disappointing” but said Plan B was in place.
“One of the big problems we had last year was not enough alcohol being confiscated,” he said.
“The road block would have stopped the “Esky on wheels” situation.
“We cannot guarantee nobody will bring alcohol into Byron Bay, however, I am confident we are not going to see a repeat of last year.”
Cr Richardson said in addition to the infrastructure in place for New Year’s Eve and the Falls Festival drawing crowds away, the family-friendly Soul Street entertainment planned for Railway Park would be welcoming for families.
“We want the community to feel like they own the streets again,” he said.
Inspector Greg Jago confirmed public order police and riot police would be in Byron for New Year’s Eve, along with additional police.
“We also have drug detection dogs available to be deployed in Byron Bay on New Year’s Eve if needed,” he said.
- Public order and riot police to be in town
- Special event parking restrictions to apply to CBD and residential areas
- Residents and business workers will be issued with parking coupons
- Railway Park to be the centre of a community-based Soul Street family-friendly entertainment
- Council rangers with power to tow away vehicles
- Alcohol to be confiscated in prohibited area
- Council to provide bins for alcohol confiscation
- Heavy police presence and additional lighting in Main Beach area
- Trial park and ride service from Butler St Reserve to apply between 10am-3pm on NYE
- Bus service from the Byron Regional Sports Complex on NYE with 400 car spaces
- Some road closures in “problem spots” to alleviate illegal camping
FIONA Hunter spent last New Year’s Eve in fear.
Having locked the gates on her property at Melaleuca Dr, Sunrise Beach, she stayed up all night on guard, watching out for the packs of aggressive party-goers terrorising her street.
“It was a nightmare. There were about 30 carloads of them and they had set up camp along our street, drinking,” Ms Hunter said.
“They were using our neighbours’ gardens for showers and setting things on fire. We could have had a bushfire because of it and no emergency services would have been able to get through – the campers had closed off access to the road with the way they parked their cars.
Even if it means breaking the law, we will set up our own blockades so that no cars can enter out street. All of the neighbours are in agreement. Last year it was dangerous and abusive – they were a real mob
“There could have been a tragedy.”
This New Year’s Eve, Fiona and her neighbours have vowed to take matters into their own hands if forced.
“Even if it means breaking the law, we will set up our own blockades so that no cars can enter out street,” she said.
“All of the neighbours are in agreement. Last year it was dangerous and abusive – they were a real mob.”
Yesterday, Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson said he had asked staff to provide Melaleuca Dr with bollards for NYE.
“They got hammered (by illegal campers) last NYE. It was disgraceful,” he said.
Two-hour parking restrictions will be in place across the whole town on NYE, from the Belongil entrance point to Red Devils at the southern point.
“This has been approved by the Roads and Maritime Minister and sets a precedent in NSW. This hasn’t been done outside of the Olympics,” Cr Richardson said.
November 25, 2013
November 21, 2013
Byron Shire Council says no thanks to fluoride in their water supply The Daily Telegraph
November 26, 2013
Tourism– Voluntary contribution initiative
November 22, 2013
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Oct 22, 2013
New Liquor Licences and DA’s
Oct 17, 2013
Koala Plan of Management
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Licencing Laws/Topless Venue
Oct 8, 2013
Licencing Laws/Topless Venue
Oct 4, 2013
AFL Comes to the BRSCC
Sept 30, 2013
September 13, 2013
September 6, 2013
Alcohol and safety issues
September 2, 2013
Alcohol and safety issues
August 5, 2013
Splendour in the Grass
DESPITE the widely reported traffic gridlockcaused by the Splendour in the Grass festival, Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson praised the event ahead of a debriefing session with stakeholders.
The meeting to discuss the festival’s first year at the North Byron Parklands site at Yelgun will be held within two weeks and involve all the key people he said.
“There were certainly teething issues with getting into the festival,” Cr Richardson said.
“Brunswick Valley Way had meltdowns on Friday and I waited for an hour and a half at the Yelgun turnoff before then queuing at the gate.
“There was inconvenience for patrons with traffic, toilets and queues, but generally speaking, for a trial festival of 25,000 people, I think overall they did a pretty good job.
“The bigger question now is what will we do to improve things next time.”
Cr Richardson said he was impressed with the tree-planting work that had been done over several years on the site and was encouraged by the trial of composting toilets.
Festival organisers yesterday described the three-day event as “one massive house-arming party at North Byron Parklands” and thanked people for their patience as problems occurred, including issues with bus services which provoked a barrage of complaints on social media.
“After six months of continual wet weather in the lead-up to the show, on Thursday night the heavens opened again just as a surge of campers arrived to enter the site,” co-producers Jessica Ducrou and Paul Piticco said in statement. “The meeting of these two events resulted in traffic and an uncomfortable set-up for some of our campers. For those of you who were so patient when arriving we thank you. We promise to get the kinks out for 2014.”
Clothes Optional Beach- Tyagarah Beach
Byron’s naturalist community is fighting to stop council from forcing beach goers to cover up.
Complaints about anti-social behaviour at the Tyagarah nudist beach has council questioning whether or not to overturn its “optional clothing policy.
Nearly seven months have passed since ex tropical cyclone, Oswald wrecked havoc on the Far North Coast beaches, but our coastline is still struggling to recover.
Byron Council is working against the clock, trying to remediate the damage before the storm season rolls around again.
When people go to the polls on September the seventh there will be one less vote to cast.
The calling of an early election means that the referendum to recognise local government in the Australian Constitution will have to be put on hold.