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Byron Shire
March 2, 2021

Can MP Don Page stop the ‘stealing’ of public lands?

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Privatised foreshore. Cabins illegally erected on the foreshore at the Terrace caravan park in Brunswick Heads for some permanent residents. Bruns locals say the cabins and unauthorised works such as paving prevent access along the foreshore and contribute to erosion of the creek bank.
Privatised foreshore. Cabins illegally erected on the foreshore at the Terrace caravan park in Brunswick Heads for some permanent residents. Bruns locals say the cabins and unauthorised works such as paving prevent access along the foreshore and contribute to erosion of the creek bank.

David Lovejoy

We should stop pussyfooting around and name North Coast Holiday Parks for what it is: a vehicle designed to steal public land and lock it up for the benefit of a cabal of bureaucrats.

The instructions may not read ‘steal’, they may say ‘maximise profits’, but the intention is clear.

At least in English feudal times when the barons told their henchmen to fence the commons off from the people they used plain language.

Taking away the foreshore in Brunswick Heads is arguably unlawful and unarguably immoral, and the more one looks at this shoddy mess the more the questions multiply.

Whose idea was it to create an entity to deprive local councils of caravan parks and divert their income to the state?

It began to happen when Tony Kelly was lands minister, that same Tony Kelly who was sacked after ICAC in another matter found him to have acted corruptly.

How did Jim Bolger, a relatively junior council worker, get pushed up through the corporate ranks to front the operation?

How can regulations relating to the foreshore be so airily dismissed, and their very existence denied?

What legal sleight of hand has taken a complex, interlocking mesh of government bodies that are supposed to protect Crown land for the common good, and produced a policy of greed and indifference that is directly opposed to the protection of the land and the interests of the people?

What Bolger relies on, and what Byron Shire Council evidently fears, is that no matter how much local residents complain the state government will push his plan through.

The only man who can act effectively is local MP and minister Don Page.

If he remains true to his oath of office and the people who voted for him he can stop this injustice proceeding further.

Well, Don, are you on the side of the liars or the people?

Campers in the Terrace caravan park are put at risk at being so close to a public road, one of the results of creeping encroachment by the caravan park on road reserve.

• Submissions can be sent to: NSW Crown Holiday Parks Trust, PO Box 647, Ballina, NSW 2478 or by email to: [email protected]


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  1. Mr Jim Bolger, General Manager of North Coast Holiday Parks, took the 10 May 2013 interim 12 month licence, given by Byron Shire Council on 9 May 2013 for Massy Greene and the Terrace to continue operating, as setting the boundaries in the exhibited Plans of Management for the caravan parks. He told me directly to my face, at an Information Session on 1 February ,that it was on his recommendation that these boundaries were then endorsed by NSWCrown Land Holiday Parks Trust to be placed on exhibition.

    However, as the facts to follow unfold, how would an independent body assess Mr Bolger’s decision-making?

    On 9 May 2013 Byron Shire Council, used the same Resolution in which the May licence was given, to reaffirmed its licensing approval for the boundaries of the caravan parks as given on 9 August 2012, 20 December 2012 and 14 February 2013 and said that these were to be exhibited in the forthcoming Plans of Management. It would appear that Mr Bolger chose to ignore this part of the 9 May document.

    There is no doubt whatsoever that Mr Bolger, as the decision-maker, was well aware of Council’s licensing approvals of August, December and February because he chose to çherry pick through those to develop the boundaries for the NEW Plan of Management for Ferry caravan park. Mr Bolger is aware that the boundary for the Ferry in the exhibited POM includes approx 12,000 sqm of compulsorily acquired land that was added to the Crown Reserve, but remained outside the operational area of the caravan park. In the POM Mr Bolger has taken liberty to leverage Council’s preference to include this land into the caravan park. He needs to be reminded that Council only indicated a preference but did not give licence to include it and that all Council’s deliberations on the licensing approvals related to the previous 2005 POM for the Ferry caravan park.

    Mr Bolger, in his capacity as the decision-maker making recommendations on the boundaries for the caravan parks that are on exhibiton is asked to justify his action.

    In adherence to openness and transparency, I would also add that since early 2000s, during John Tilton of Australian Tourist Accommodation’s contract with Bryon Shire Council to manage and develop POM for the caravan parks, he was encouraged to include these 12,000 sq m into the caravan park post opening of the dural carriageway, and vacate the foreshore at Ferry from the paved surface the then public road reserve to the Mean High Water Mark. This would then allow free, unfetted access to that prime foreshore for use by the general public and the caravan park clientele

    I would also advise that I am sensitive to Mr Bolger’s frequent use of the term úpgrade”, ímprovements” in relation to the caravan parks, as this diverts attention from ‘development’ which would attract the appropriate development contributions to Council. It could also be Mr Bolger’s intent to justify cherry picking through the existing caravan parks to úpgrade/improve only certain areas/spaces and not others to which he may endeavour to apply Ordinance 71 éxemptions’and savings provision to do nothing. Given his decision-making role, and in pursuit of openness and transparency, Mr Bolger needs to clarify the aforementioned.


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