New Plymouth District (NPD) Mayor Neil Holdom has welcomed Government moves to find a solution to the nationwide freedom camping problems.
Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis has invited 22 Mayors from across New Zealand to meet him early next month to discuss this matter following a big rise in freedom campers and the negative impact this was having on some communities.
NPD Councillors voted at an extraordinary council meeting on Tuesday to temporarily ban freedom campers at the Waiwhakaiho river mouth and restrict numbers at the East End Beach, Wind Wand and Kawaroa car parks. The Freedom Camping Bylaw will be reviewed at the end of April.
“NPDC will be actively involved in these discussions to find a way to welcome freedom campers while ensuring they are not putting too much pressure on facilities in our most beautiful places. We’re looking forward to talking it over with the Minister and other Mayors,” says Mr Holdom.
“We’ve already taken steps this week to protect local access and the environment in New Plymouth. We need a workable and long-term solution,” says Mr Holdom.
The discussions are due to take place at the beginning of March.