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Byron Shire
October 4, 2022

Revoke Splendour consent

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Iron Gates developer launches appeal against DA refusal at Evans Head

It is a saga that has been going on for over 30 years and that some hoped might finally have come to an end. But that is not to be the case with an appeal against the refusal of the Iron Gates development application (DA) at Evans Head now having been submitted.

The legislation that gave Splendour consent has been revoked. Splendour’s consent should also now be revoked. 

Originally Byron Council gave Splendour consent, but the residents took that to the Land and Environment Court and had Byron’s consent overturned (on two successful points of claim: 

1) That the site’s Wildlife Habitat zoning prohibited an event site, and 

2) That Byron Council’s consent had not demonstrated that no environmental harm would take place. 

The Splendour developers then took the event to the Qld Woodford site, but didn’t sell out tickets there, (it didn’t have the hippy vibe they were marketing), so they took it to the NSW Government, which invented new legislation to enable the state government to overturn the Land and Environment Court judgment (you can’t let legislation, or the environment, or the state government’s own farmland protection zoning of the site, get in the way of GST revenue, and anyway we can all eat cake). 

The state’s new invented legislation (called Part 3A) was associated with corruption on other developments, and ended up being so reviled that the state government revoked and removed the Part 3A legislation. The enabling legislation is gone, and with it gone, so should be the Splendour consent. 

The recent Splendour debacle should be a real wakeup call, as this recent debacle is a warning that raises the extremely serious concerns at what would be an even more serious situation of a bushfire. A bushfire would race across this site faster than people could run. An intense bushire originating in the adjacent nature reserve could send burning embers kilometres in front of the fire front, setting intense fires in the forest, carparks and camping sites on site. Thousands on site, and thousands packed in waiting for buses, would be the trapped victims unable to escape. 

Original submissions against [the Splendour DA) clearly illustrated the risk of site flooding with photos provided of the site as a lake. A local RFS member drove back from Sydney to raise his strong concerns at the capacity of an evacuation in case of a bushfire. 

The originally stated risks from a heavy rainfall event have now been demonstrated. Who’s assessing the risks now? Or will GST revenue and the US corporation majority Splendour (and Falls) owners’ income mean that we wait until the originally stated risk of a bushfire engulfing the site is also demonstrated?

John Lazarus

Byron Bay


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5 COMMENTS

  1. Yet again NSW LNP resorted to corrupt processes to approve inappropriate development.
    Splendour is inappropriate and unsustainable for the site or region.
    AND how were the already unmanageable numbers of 30,000 attendees increased to 50,000?

  2. Voters in Byron Shire elected to trash the long standing Green Council and this environmental disaster is what you will get from the new whizz kids on Council, who are too lazy to scrutineer staff proposals and who want to house everyone who fancies moving to the Shire. it will never be the same again.

    • Are you talking about the last election Ron, or the one before that? I seem to recall it was the previous Greens dominated council that spread the welcome mat.

    • The Splendour DA was approved by the BSC Barham council in 2007/8 which ignored the concerns of the community about damage to a nationally significant wildlife corridor, fire and flooding. The community took the DA to the Land and Environment Court which agreed with the community’s concerns and refused it on the grounds that it was ” not a suitable development for that site”.

      Eddie Obeid’s ALP then legislated the Planning and Assessemnt Commission for DAs over $10m to bypass council and the community. The PAC (Pass Anything Commission) then approved the development ignoring the Land and Environment Court ruling.

      Another instance of this community being raped and pillaged by grifting and rorting politicians who aren’t fit to run a chook raffle. Many of them should be in gaol with Obeid.

  3. The Woodford folk festival is for people like my old friends. You brought your lefty crap there. Yikes. It’s regional Queensland.
    They had to ban Potato Cannons there because a fire fight got out of control and the port-a-potties caught on fire.

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