Byron Shire mayor Simon Richardson.
Byron Shire mayor Simon Richardson.

CIRCLE OF TRUST: ‘Byron twist’ to a COVID-safe summer

WITH Byron Bay already bustling with visitors, Byron Shire Council, together with police, have launched a campaign calling for a COVID-safe summer in the region.

Byron mayor Simon Richardson and Tweed Byron Police District Chief Inspector Matt Kehoe launched the COVID-safe Summer Byron campaign in Apex Park on Tuesday, the first official day of summer.

Coloured circles are being painted on the grass to encourage people to gather in small groups while signs are being installed in parks and beaches across the shire in an approach with a “Byron Shire twist”.

“Our messages are that outdoor group gatherings need to be kept to a maximum of 50 people and to remember that 1.5m is the distance we should be keeping,” Cr Richardson said.

“Our SLS volunteers and lifeguards really do an amazing job keeping swimmers safe every summer so hopefully the signs will make it easier for them especially during the busy school

holidays and over Christmas and New Year.

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“It would be great to see people getting their photos taken next to the signs and posting on Instagram with the hashtag #covidsafebyronshire.

“The last thing we want to see are our beaches and parks being closed because there are too many people.”

Although changes came into effect from December 1, strict rules still apply to

hospitality venues and authorities are concerned about those who choose to hold house parties which may attract more than the 50 visitors now allowed for homes with an outdoor space.

“This is where we, as a community, need to work together and if we see a party or large gathering starting to form on a private property, or in a public area, we need to let the police know,” Cr Richardson said.

CCTV cameras have been installed in Apex Park and the Main Beach carpark.

“As a community, a state and a nation, we have all done incredibly well coping and responding to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.

“This summer will be another challenge for Council, police, our health service and lifesavers so it would be terrific if everyone, visitors and locals, continued to do their bit to respect the COVID-safety rules.”

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