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Byron Shire
September 21, 2021

Latest News

10pm Monday – update of COVID venues of concern

The Northern NSW Local Health District has been notified of a number of venues of concern associated with confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the region.

Other News

Wearing drink bottles on your bum to save rainforests

Undies entrepreneur Brendan Lo doesn’t see himself as a smart arse, but his take on some old bit of wisdom is a bit cheeky.

Thank you Mayor Lyon

Thank you, Mayor Lyon for highlighting the risks in having visiting film crew, real estate speculators and the like...

Local mum features in documentary about the impacts and possible solutions around suicide

Murwillumbah mum Ursula has lived every parents worst nightmare – her child, at the age of just 17, took his own life – and a lot of time and energy, questions and conjecture and finger-pointing can rumble around this, but at the end of the day Ursula’s precious boy is gone and he’s not coming back.

A moment of your life?

Six questions for Jehovah’s Witness doorknockers: 1. Are you aware that the 2016 Royal Commission into Institutional Handling of Child...

The Greens and Ballina Council

With the Greens announcing their intention to contest the Ballina Shire local government election to be held in December...

Mandatory mask

Mandatory mask wearing is not working. Supermarkets can’t seem to enforce this, unfortunately. If like me, you see a...

September 8, 2021

Byron Shire Echo issue 36.13 – September 8, 2021

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In this Issue:

Comedic paranoia

Despite Peter Olsen’s limitless comedic ability, perhaps it’s time for The Echo to curtail his paranoid multi conspiracy theories conspicuous in his letters. Really, if you can’t sustain your argument without resorting to lies (can’t go to the beach...


No jab, no jive?

No jab, no jive if you want to go to a festival, what the? This is blackmail by the health department and regimes. This country is turning into a police state. I thought I saw the last of that...



Mask mandates are flawed orders that violate the human right to informed consent. Businesses that demand their customers wear a face mask and provide personal details do so in what I consider to be a violation of privacy rights....


COVID is here to stay

As a medical doctor of 30 years, and citizen, I have watched the last 18 months with confusion. Initially we were all worried about the unknown virus. Then we mostly agreed with slowing the curve of infections through some...


I really like The Echo’s new word invention: Freedumb (noun) 1. The belief that your right to personal freedom outweighs others’ rights to personal safety. Onya! Burkhard S Waltrup, Crabbes Creek

Moving on

In my seventy-eight years I’ve seen many changes, not only in Mullumbimby. The thing I notice most is how we now dance to the tune of the biggest idiot. I personally am very lucky, have had ups and downs but...


Wise practice

For all the travels of the world, cultural habits are slow to share. The Japanese sneeze and cough into their elbow which is now a practice we adhere to. In Thailand, masks are worn for a cold and sore...



I wholeheartedly agree with Brian Mollett (Letters 18 August). Until very recently Burringbar Street was a true representation of an iconic Northern Rivers coastal country town main street; complete with palm trees and a few remaining classic buildings. It...


COVID choices

The virus isn’t going anywhere – it’s here to stay. There are three real solutions. 1. Let the virus run its course without intervention 2. A perpetual police state 3. Mass vaccination What do you choose? Nick Chapman, Ocean Shores


Happy for me to die?

Narada Vantari, I am over 70, have a pre-existing inherited condition, (no amount of healthy living could have avoided it) and I have to share my community with many who share your views.    It seems, from your letter, that...


Next disaster

I am impelled to bring to your attention the next environmental disaster. We’ve had plastic bottles, single use plastic bags, disposable nappies, balloons, and now we have disposable masks! They are everywhere; these masks are primarily made in China...


On being prepared

In recent commentary on the Commonwealth’s proposed quarantine facility in Brisbane, Simon Birmingham said, ‘Whilst it will be used for any ongoing quarantine requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic it will also be there in the years to come to...



Byron Shire Council (BSC) is not transparent despite what the former Mayor or BSC’s senior management would like the community to believe. You cannot claim that the Council is transparent when waged staff are threatened with dismissal if they...


Not enough ICU beds

My best mate lives in a country town in the UK. Over the last year, she estimates around 10 per cent of her community have had COVID-19, including her Nan who died, and our friend from school who, at...


COVID advantage squandered

Australia has indeed been ‘the lucky country’ in the COVID-19 pandemic until recently, yet ‘run mainly by second rate people’ as the original quote continues. Our federal and state governments have squandered our advantage by not creating safe quarantine...

Puritanical wellness

I am getting a little tired of the sweeping statements trotted out about the ‘allopathic medical establishment’ and its ‘obeisance to the pharmaceutical industry’ (Nerada Vantari, letters, 25 August). Suffice to say that this does an enormous disservice to...


Face masks

I was just wondering if anyone has the answer to this question: If face masks have the ability to contain so many germs, viruses etc then how come we don’t have biosecurity bins to safely deposit our used face masks...


Eco tourism biz needs your ‘staycation’

Wendy Bithell from Byron Bay Eco Tours describes the current climate as ‘like being trapped underwater, and the only air you can breathe is through a straw’.


Government offer free courses to upskill

An additional 3,000 training places are now on offer to upskill at home during lockdown, says NSW Minister for Skills and Tertiary Education, Geoff Lee.


Should film and TV productions go ahead while locals remain locked...

Locals are questioning the criteria for filming Coke ads and Love Island in Byron Shire, claiming film companies ignore regulations around shooting drone footage and perform illegal earthworks.


Share the dignity

It was good to see a wide coverage regards affordable housing. The situation is critical with so many homeless people living rough, living in their cars and, if lucky, some couch surfing. Weekly I meet people, mainly women, who ask...



Marie Sherd, Mullumbimby I am not a local – I’ve only lived here since 1972. As one of the ‘alternatives’ I know we freaked out the locals when we arrived, but over time but we got along just fine – eventually....


Renters and landlords speak of trying times

Challenging times seem to bring out the best and the worst in people, and Byron’s small business landscape appears to be seeing plenty of both during the current COVID lockdown.


Residential tenancy support to increase

The NSW Government say they will increase the Residential Tenancy Support Package up to $4,500 per tenancy, and have extended the eviction moratorium until November 1.


Just a note

Ron Stinson, Brunswick Heads Would it be okay if all anti-vaxxers, anti-maskers, etc signed advanced care directives that they will not take priority over ANYONE who needs a respirator or an ICU bed for any reason? Fair enough?


A new COVID-19 case flies into the Far North Coast

The Northern NSW Local Health District has confirmed that there is a new case of COVID-19 in Northern NSW today, and they will be included in NSW Health’s official reporting tomorrow.

Found – Have you seen Steve? Missing person

Mullumbimby man Steve Mustchin went missing at 11am this morning from Byron Bay Hospital and his family are asking locals to keep an eye out for him.

Images released of men who robbed the Byron Bowlo

Detectives investigating the armed robbery of a licensed premises in Byron Bay earlier this year, have released CCTV images and are appealing for public information that may assist their inquiries.

New Nesbitt Park mountain bike skills course in Lismore

Though Lismore is currently in lockdown, the city has inaugurated a new sporting activity in Nesbitt Park that will make residents want to enjoy outdoors as soon as possible.