Albury Council receiving a growing number of complaints about Albury Showgrounds camping

ILLEGAL camping at the Albury Showgrounds will come to a head on Monday.

Albury Council and the showgrounds trust have been at odds for more than a year about owners of trucks, buses, recreational vehicles and camper vans using the site without permission.

The activity has been going on for decades, but council’s heightened interest in the issue followed a complaint lodged in May last year.

The showgrounds trust manages the site on behalf of NSW Crowns Land, which has halted intended compliance action from council.

Further investigations by council has revealed the number of people using the site is increasing and the length of stay in some instances has become 10-plus days.

Campers are charged a small fee to stay at the showgrounds with money collected used on upkeep of existing amenities.

The council’s planning and development committee on Monday night will be presented with a recommendation stating council defer compliance action for 12 months and camping be restricted to five sites, a maximum stay of two nights, sites to be serviced by a reticulated water supply, toilets and refuse disposal facilities and no caravan, recreational vehicle or tent is to be located closer than six metres to any other caravan, vehicle or tent.

Also, unoccupied caravans, camper vans or tents are not to be allowed to remain in the designated area for more than 24 hours.

Henk van de Ven

Henk van de Ven

Committee member and showgrounds trust member Cr Henk van de Ven confirmed he would be declaring a conflict of interest in the issue on Monday.

But he conceded the issue needed to be resolved.

The operators of the adjoining caravan park have informed council their business is suffering due to camping on the showgrounds.

Albury Council and NSW Government have provided funding for a master-plan to be completed of the showgrounds which will in part investigate the issue of camping on the site and other development options.

It comes less than a week after The Border Mail revealed a proposal to convert the Weatherall Masonry site on the Lincoln Causeway into a tourist caravan park.

Cr Murray King was critical of Albury Council staff for not acting quickly enough on the opportunity, with concept plans in front of Wodonga Council.