New Splendour Venue Approved For Trial Period

26 April 2012 | 12:49 pm | Scott Fitzsimons

The North Byron Parklands has been approved for a small number of events.

Byron Bay's North Byron Parklands site, which Splendour In The Grass will now move to next year, has been approved by the Planning and Assessment Commission [PAC] following a drawn out process of debate and approval.

Today the PAC gave permission for the grounds to host events during a five year trial period, up to the end of 2017. Three events per year will be permitted, none of which are to run longer that four days and there will be a maximum of ten days across the whole year.

The capacity of each event will be allowed to grow each year with events in the first year allowed 25,000, 15,000 and 10,000 patrons for the large, medium and small trial events respectively.

The site is 258.71 hectares big, with 93.29 hectares to be used for events - 63 percent of the grounds have therefore been set aside as protected vegetation areas.

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In their approval the PAC wrote, "the Commission agrees with the Director-General of the Department of Planning's assessment that the proposal will provide Byron Shire with a permanent cultural events site attracting visitors to the area and generating much needed employment, as well as providing environmental benefits arising from revegetation”.

Splendour In The Grass will move to the grounds in 2013, after being held at Belongil Fields.

Mat Morris, General Manager of North Byron Parklands, admitted that the proposal had been changed a number of times throughout the approval process - they had hoped for more than three events a year initially.

"It has been a long journey, we are pleased to finally gain approval," Morris said.

Splendour In The Grass co-producer Jessica Ducrou said that Splendour would now be permanently based in Byron Bay.