17.1 C
Byron Shire
August 9, 2022

Falls Festival site not yet approved

Latest News

Tucked away in a Mullumbimby music studio, a group of local musicians have been pouring their hearts out through song.

Other News


Who’s with me in launching a class action against Byron and Lismore councils for compensation for us hapless ratepayers...

Tweed research hub battling chlamydia for koalas

A unique koala facility on the Tweed Coast is playing a key role in the battle against the chlamydia.

Increase in Reef coral cover comes with a warning

As we witness the ongoing destruction of the Great Barrier Reef by global warming and climate change, new data showing an increase in coral cover in some areas of the Reef is promising news.

Splendour sinks

It’s a case of ‘Told you so!’ Splendour establishing itself at the present site drew huge resistance from locals. It...

Vision not so splendid for Lennox businesses

Ballina Shire Council workers have been taking advantage of sunny weather this week to advance the Lennox Village Vision. Unfortunately for local businesses, roadworks and noise have also disrupted them and their customers.

Engineers available for structural assessments

Engineers Without Borders (EWB) will be providing freely-accessible engineering expertise to the Northern Rivers in conjunction with Holding Hands Under...

A meeting was held to hear public submissions on the 20 month extension of the North Byron Parklands trial. Photo supplied.
A meeting was held to hear public submissions on the 20 month extension of the North Byron Parklands trial. Photo supplied.

Approval of the North Byron Parklands site 20 month extension, where both Falls Festival and Splendour are held, was subject to a public hearing on Tuesday, 29 August to hear community input ad concerns about the future use. The meeting took between four to five hours and heard from 33 speakers.

Mat Morris, General Manager of North Byron Parklands said that, ‘there were approximately 35 people in attendance and the speaker list was split roughly 50/50 between people with concerns and those in support.

‘There were no surprises from our perspective in relation to the issues raised.’

The planning department have recommended in favour of the extension, however, the final decision rests with the Planning Assessment Commission (PAC).


A range of concerns in relation to the North Byron Parklands failure to put in place noise reduction measures for residents, lack of an environmental impact statement (EIS) and breaches of their conditions under the trial approval to run events were raised.

‘Many people felt like it was a done deal given the fact that Falls Festival tickets were on sale on the day of the meeting,’ said Angela Dunlop, Secretary, South Golden Beach Community Association (SGBPA).

‘A lot of people are losing faith in the system. In the whole five years there has been one compliance report from the department of planning (DOP). They should have been regular, say one a year, or one for each event. There have been more than 80 breaches.’

The SGBPA claim that they have evidence of the breaches however, Mr Morris has told The Echo that there have been only ‘three non-compliances issued to the venue by the Department.’ 

Morris also pointed out that an EIS was not required for this extension modification and that it is ‘only the state significant development application which is a separate application entirely that requires an EIS which we are currently preparing.

‘In relation to the noise attenuation, Parklands has received costings from three registered builders to undertake these works at a cost of between $136,000 and $150,000. There is only one resident that has instigated a request for attenuation and we have been waiting months to spend a considerable sum of money to attenuate this home.’

Economic value questioned

The value of the North Byron Parklands: Economic Impact and Benefits 2015, that has been used to argue in favour of the extension by the planning department, was questioned.

Michael Hunt asked economists to go through the figures and now disputes the amounts that they claim are benefitting the community and the way the amounts were calculated,’ continued Ms Dunlop.

Concerns over the use of multipliers used relating to the economic benefit gained by the community and the sources used for the figures were questioned.

‘Personally, I have been to dozens of music festivals and I am not opposed to festivals per se but this is located in a wildlife corridor and right next to a Nature Reserve on which the state of NSW has spent millions.

‘An alternative to the site could be, for example, the Cavanbah centre that the council is struggling to make pay.’

In response Mr Morris told The Echo that, ‘Parklands stands by the figures presented in the 2015 economic impact report which were derived directly from the financial accounts of both Splendour in the Grass and Falls Festival Byron’

A commission spokesperson said that: ‘The Commission will now consider all issues raised at the public meeting, in written submissions, and in the Department of Planning and Environment’s assessment report, before making its decision. The Commission will work to deliver its decision, and decision report, as soon as practicable.’

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Pedal power celebrated at Murwillumbah film night

Those with an interest in films and cycling will be in heaven this Thursday night (August 11) when the Regent Cinema in Murwillumbah hosts the Big Bike Film Night.

Beekeepers can get a permit to move hives away from flood water

With so many challenges currently surrounding the bee industry, it comes as a relief to many that NSW Department of Primary Industries will issue a special group permit for beekeepers in flood warning areas to move their hives to higher ground.


Who’s with me in launching a class action against Byron and Lismore councils for compensation for us hapless ratepayers as we daily shred expensive...

The Healthy Minds Club are busy as!

The Lennox-based (and fast-expanding) young men's mental health group are continuing to change lives and inspire the wider community with activities across the region.