Plans to shut controversial nudist beach

BACKERS of a controversial Byron Bay nude beach should pull their heads out of the sand, says a local councillor.

Byron Shire Councillor Paul Spooner says residents are sick of being harassed by sex pests at a section of beach at Tyagarah and the clothing optional area should be closed.

Councillors last month voted to maintain the area as a clothing-optional beach. It was passed five votes to three.

Cr Spooner, who missed the meeting, said he planned to put a rescission motion forward at the next council meeting on November 22.

Tyagarah Beach, north of Byron Bay is a “clothing optional” beach. Pic: Adam Head.
Tyagarah Beach, north of Byron Bay is a “clothing optional” beach. Pic: Adam Head.

He said sexual deviants attracted to the beach were causing too many issues for residents.

A police submission to council stated the area surrounding the nude beach was home to 10 times the sexual and street offences of neighbouring beaches.

"What I'm saying to my fellow councillors is stop putting your head in the sand on this issue," Cr Spooner said. "Who are you actually representing by keeping the declaration open? It's certainly not the local community.

"The main issue for me at Tyagarah is sexual assault and the risk of it continuing on that beach."

A man allegedly performed an indecent act while a 30-year-old woman was jogging along Grays Lane at Tyagarah last week.

The nudist beach has been the scene for a large number of sexual offences
The nudist beach has been the scene for a large number of sexual offences

Residents previously reported porn being filmed at the beach.

"It only requires one councillor to see sense here and that vote would be overturned and there's a good likelihood that could occur at the meeting," Cr Spooner said.

"The police data that is available should be enough to put a red light on this. We have an unsafe situation that has developed at Tyagarah."

He said the safety of residents should be put before visiting naturists.

He suggested moving the nude beach within walking distance from the centre of Byron.

"The advantage of the area, if it was to be supported, is that it can be well patrolled," Cr Spooner said.