BOOZEY BEACHES?: Byron coast marred by drinking, drugs
TAKING a dip in the crystal blue waters at Byron Bay's world-famous Main Beach has become increasingly marred by boozed-up revellers congregating on its shores.
Regulars to the beach have aired their concerns on social media after a contentious arrest near the beach on Monday at The Wreck, where a woman allegedly tried to bite a female police officer.
Ben Ormonde called on those criticising police to "wait for the full story
from both sides before judging” on the Byron Bay Community Board Facebook page.
"I go to that place next to the dog beach every day (sic). The people who hang out under the pandas (sic) palms are often very drunk, drugged and or highly abusive, usually they're totally peaceful albeit drunk and or stoned,” he wrote.
Giles Robinson wrote he saw "a bunch of hammered parkies, one screaming drunk jibberish at the top of his lungs disturbing people on the beach” about an hour before the arrest.
Byron Shire Council said in a statement its staff had not "noticed a significant increase in anti-social behaviour in recent times” at the beach near The Wreck, Main Beach or its carpark.
Alcohol-free zones are enforced in Byron Bay's CBD, its beaches and green spaces.
A council spokeswoman said staff wore body cameras while patrolling those areas and worked closely with police to monitor anti-social behaviour.
The litter cleaned up by conservation group Positive Change for Marine Life is evidence of the problem on Byron's beaches.
Chief executive Karl Goodsell said of the rubbish at Byron's beaches, 80 per cent was cigarette butts.
Mr Goodsell said loads of glass bottles were collected in the past year at Main Beach.
He said Tallows Beach, The Wreck and Tea Tree Lake were all "litter hot spots” regularly trashed by those hosting parties.
"Anecdotally, all the beaches in Byron Bay are litter hot spots,” he said.