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Byron Shire
March 6, 2021

Crown Lands above the law

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Minister for the north coast Don Page suggests the dispute over the closing of Riverside Crescent, Brunswick Heads, by North Coast Holiday Park may end up in court. It is therefore incumbent on the minister to resolve the long-running caravan park saga before serious penalties are imposed on Crown Lands Department and North Coast Holiday Parks over their poor management practices and many breaches of local government regulations.

There is widespread community support for Byron Council’s proposed caravan park boundaries and we would welcome our day in court.

We believe that: the use of road-reserve lands for park activities has created significant safety and amenity issues for park users and local residents; many campsites are too small and fail to meet minimum standards; the parks also fail to provide adequate car parking, buffer zones and setbacks; there is a long list of compliance breaches in each park; and the environmental impact on sensitive foreshore land has  been ignored.

Crown land managers have had 25 years to ‘upgrade’ Brunswick Heads caravan parks and bring them into line with current standards yet virtually all new works have failed to comply with legislative requirements. The Crown Lands Department believes it is above the law. The pursuit of profits has blinded park management and our public trustees to their real responsibilities to uphold standards and ensure best practice in the operation of our Crown reserve caravan parks.

We urge Minister Page to endorse Byron Shire Council’s new licence agreement and save the Crown Lands Department the embarrassment and financial cost of having to justify their appalling management practices in court.

Michele Grant
Bruns Foreshore Protection Group


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