A controversial plan to open a topless bar in Byron Bay’s CBD which sparked community outcry recently has been rejected.
The state liquor licensing authority says it has refused the application to transfer the liquor licence from the former La Playa Tapas Bar in Fletcher Street to Bay Enterprises to operate the Bay at Byron topless bar and restaurant.
The application proposed to extend the trading licence till 7am.
The Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority (ILGA) said late on Friday that both parties did not want to proceed with the transfer application and as a result it had refused it.
The ILGA had asked for a community impact statement before deciding on the issue, with Byron Shire Council, police and the Last Drinks at 12 campaign group opposing the bar and its proposed late trading due to concerns of increasing the alcohol-fuelled violence problem in the town.
Mayor Simon Richardson, who voiced strong opposition against the plan due to its social impacts, welcomed the latest announcement by the ILGA, telling media it was ‘fantastic news’.
Cr Richardson told APN Media that the failure of the bid was ‘testament that when our community speaks with one voice with individuals, business and council, we are a very strong force to be reckoned with in promoting and maintaining the integrity of our community’.
He described the plan as a ‘highly inappropriate and exploitative development’ that was ‘trading on our good name’.