Dogs’ freedom at beaches

FREEDOM: Residents Coral Ward and David Todd will now be able to give their dogs more freedom when they are on beaches around the Yankalilla district. Photo: Dani Brown.
FREEDOM: Residents Coral Ward and David Todd will now be able to give their dogs more freedom when they are on beaches around the Yankalilla district. Photo: Dani Brown.

After a community uproar, the District Council of Yankalilla has back-flipped on a number of its dogs on beaches restrictions.

At the August council meeting, councillor Simon Rothwell put forward three motions to have some dogs on beaches bylaws changed, and all passed.

The changes mean there is a dog on-leash area between 200 metres either side of Normanville Jetty at all times, and a dog off-leash area 200m north of Normanville Jetty to Carrickalinga Creek.

The district-wide dog on-leash control between 10am and 6pm during daylight savings has been changed to 10am 6pm from December 1 to the end of February, plus Good Friday to Easter Monday inclusive.

Affected beaches are Carrickalinga Beach between Carrickalinga river estuary and Carrickalinga Head, Lady Bay, Myponga Beach and Morgan’s Beach.

These controls changed after a community group, led by Coral Ward and David Todd, wanted to see dogs on beaches bylaws loosened.

The group presented a petition to the council with a huge amount of names, and they made three presentations.

Ms Ward and Mr Todd, along with Cr Rothwell and council chief executive Nigel Morris, created a working party to find a better solution. Through further community consultation, the working party found what would suit the community better.

Ms Ward said what was put forward at the meeting was a good compromise, which the group was “very happy” with.

She said the council had been thorough while working with the group and the community.

“Simon Rothwell was happy to work with the community to possibly change the bylaws,” Ms Ward said.

Cr Rothwell said the “reasonably long process initiated by Councillor Fitzgerald and Councillor Preston” was coming to a positive end.

“We’ve got a group who came back and have done a really good job … hopefully we appease some of their concerns with the controls.”

Councillor Janet Jones presented another motion at the council meeting to have the area known as Shelley Beach at Lady Bay as a permanent off-lead all year round, “effectively giving the district two off-lead areas”, Ms Ward said.

Ms Ward and Mr Todd said the changes were important for tourism, especially for those who stay in dog-friendly accommodation and those with dogs who always visit in summer and Easter.

“This district needs that income from tourism and the off-lead areas at this time will support the many who have come,” Ms Ward said. 

She said the group would continue to discuss and negotiate with council the restrictions at Myponga, Second Valley and Rapid Bay.

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