Pro surfing contest at Lennox Point: LNSR committee wants your thoughts
May 27, 2008
To the Lennox Head and Ballina Surfing Community,
The Lennox National Surfing Reserve (LNSR), extending from Flat Rock in the south to the Lennox Surf Lifesaving Club in the north and over the seabed from the high-water mark to 500m out to sea, was formally gazetted by the Hon Tony Kelly, Minister for Lands, on February 16, 2008.
A local committee, The Lennox National Surfing Reserve Association (LNSRA), made up of individuals from within the Lennox Head and Ballina surfing community nominated, planned and developed the gazettal of the reserve with assistance from the National Reference Group.
The LNSR is recognised as encompassing sites of iconic natural, cultural and historical value to both the local, national and international surfers and to the community at large.
From the outset, the local committee’s goal has been to recognise, protect and manage surfing in conjunction with other uses for both present and future generations.
Lennox Head is only the second formally gazetted surfing reserve in NSW and at present there is no formal structure for how a surfing reserve should be managed.
The NSW Department of Lands continues to have management responsibility for the area over which the reserve has been declared and the Department is currently considering the most appropriate management framework, which may be that of a Reserve Trust.
The declaration of a surfing reserve does not exclude any groups.
The local committee is currently in the process of preparing a draft set of guidelines for the management of the LNSR.
The guidelines will address issues such as recreational and competition surfing, water quality, access, parking, vegetation management and a range of other environmental and community concerns within the reserve and also in the land area adjacent to the reserve, which is currently managed by Ballina Shire Council.
These draft policies will be presented to the Department for consideration once a management structure for the LNSR is established.
With over 20 million participants worldwide, participation in surfing is projected to continue to grow as a recreational activity of choice.
More surfers as well as rapid regional population growth and the impacts of coastal development in coastal localities such as Lennox Head can significantly influence our quality of life and the natural environment we enjoy.
It was with these issues in mind that a group of committed local residents sought to secure the formal protection of the surf breaks around Lennox Head.
The local committee has representation from boardriding clubs, recreational surfers, government, environment scientists and the legal field and recognises the importance of a balanced approach to the management of the LNSR.
Recently, the discussion over whether or not to hold a pro surfing event at Lennox Point has divided many in the local surfing community and overshadowed the long-term benefit to the whole community of having a surfing reserve.
The local committee welcomes input from any group or individual who has an interest in the management of the LNSR.
Please take this opportunity to contact us with your concerns and suggestions by writing to PO Box 1036 Ballina 2478 or contacting us with through our website http://www.lennoxsurfingreserve.com
We look forward to your input to help us guide the management of the surfing reserve.
Lennox National Surfing Reserve Association