Margaret and Gary Stange, of Tallaringa Views at Alstonville, are worried possible changes to the Ballina Shire Council’s DCP will impact on their plans to build more holiday cottages.
Margaret and Gary Stange, of Tallaringa Views at Alstonville, are worried possible changes to the Ballina Shire Council’s DCP will impact on their plans to build more holiday cottages. Cathy Adams

Fears changes could shut door on valuable tourism

THE future of Margaret and Gary Stange’s business lies in the hands of Ballina Shire Council, or more specifically the council’s draft rural development control plan.

Mrs Stange owns Alstonville bed and breakfast Tallaringa Views, which has two secluded cottages for romantic holidays set on 26ha.

She said restrictions on B&B cabins proposed in the draft plan would ruin any future plans she had for expanding her business.

The plan proposes cabin sizes be restricted to 50sqm and that each cabin be placed only 10 metres apart. The draft plan also requires B&B operators to seal any internal roads to their cabins.

“We are often asked how far the cabins are apart,” Mrs Stange said. “We have a lot of honeymooners come to stay and they don’t want to be right next door to someone else.

“Our cottages are 20 to 30 metres apart and that works well for us.

“We put a development application through council about seven years ago and received approval for four cabins. We have built two of them.

“I am worried the draft plan, if adopted, will impact on ourfuture plans.”

Tony Gilding, owner of the Macadamia Castle at Newrybar, said the draft plan would stifle small-scale tourist activities.

“Bed and breakfasts and farm stays are a way to make use of rural land that can’t be farmed,” he said.

“By making use of the land in this way the owners are encouraged to look after the land by cleaning up creeks, planting trees and maintaining the land so it looks good to visitors.

“Having such small cabins so close together is not a country holiday and people will go elsewhere.”

The council’s strategic services acting group manager, Matthew Wood, said the plan was in draft form and submissions from residents and business people were welcome.

He said the draft plan was the result of consultation with the Newrybar community in 2006. The closing date for written submissions is February 6.


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