About this society
To preserve the surfing culture, history, integrity and spirit of the Bells Beach Surfing Recreation Reserve for future generations
An open letter to the community from the Bells Beach Preservation Society:
The Bells Beach Surfing Recreation Reserve, the worlds first surfing reserve, was created in 1973.
As a result of population pressure and increased tourism, Bells Beach is at a critical point in its history. The reserve’s manager, the Surf Coast Shire, is struggling to manage the reserve and is planning changes that will affect the character of Bells. Once the changes are in place they will be irreversible. The things you enjoy most about the reserve, and currently take for granted, could soon be a thing of the past.
With this in mind, we have formed the Bells Beach Preservation Society to preserve the surfing culture, history, integrity, and spirit of the Bells Beach Surfing recreation reserve for future generations. We aim to give a voice to those who use and value Bells Beach, and to engage the Surf Coast Shire, and the government, in real community consultation about what is best for Bells.
Our immediate concerns for the Bells reserve are:
- The urgent need for improvements to the existing infrastructure, most importantly diverting the stormwater to prevent further erosion of the beach.
- Unregulated, unlicensed and dangerous tourist coaches in the reserve and the Shire’s proposal to use the Winki Pop carpark for 5 coach bays and a toilet block.
- The unsustainable use by the tourist coaches of the existing toilets which the Shire’s own officers describe as “barely meeting EPA requirements”
- The need for meaningful discussions about the impact of commercial surfing events on the reserve and on the recreational users of the reserve.
We don’t claim to have all the answers but our holy grail is wolds best practice in every aspect of the reserve. Please have a look around this site and let us know what you think.