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Beaches - legal?

  • 20-05-2014 5:03pm
    #1
    Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 37,485 Mod ✭✭✭✭


    Is it legal to camp on a public beach?

    We're looking at a small enough group. Not rowdy.


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 9,554 ✭✭✭Pat Mustard


    A few beaches are private property, and it would be trespassing to camp on such property without permission.

    Most beaches are public beaches owned by the State, but they can still be regulated by the bye-laws of the relevant local authority. The relevant local authority bye-laws should be checked. Most can be found with a google search against (for example) "Clare County beach bye laws", which would show the following result: http://www.clarecoco.ie/Accessible_HTML/waste_water_environment/Beach_Bye_laws/Clare_Beach_Bye_Laws.html

    When the relevant bye laws have been located, it is necessary to check:
    (a) whether they apply throughout the year, or just for a portion of the year. Section 2 of the Cork County Council beach bye law states that the bye law only applies in the Summer Season, from 15th May until 31st August. Take a look at the link below, if interested.
    (b) on which beaches camping is prohibited. There is likely to be a schedule with a list of beaches where camping is prohibited.
    (c) whether there are any exclusions for particular beaches. For instance, the Clare County Council beach bye law states that it does not apply to Spanish Point Beach during the Willie Clancy Festival (see quote below).
    (d) whether there are restrictions on other activities such as lighting fires, cooking, walking dogs, fishing, swimming, surfing.
    (e) the penalty for breaching the bye laws.

    From the Clare Co. Co. beach bye laws:
    No person shall do or cause any of the following acts on the beach namely:-

    Vehicles/Tents/Overnight Parking

    9. drive, bring to, place on, leave or park any motor-car, motorbike, van, trailer, camper-van, caravan, mobile home, off-road vehicle, carriage, truck, wagon, lorry, all terrain vehicle, quad bike or other mechanically propelled vehicle on the beach or dune system appurtenant to the beach. This bye-law shall not apply to a vehicle operated under license from the Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources, by the Council or its agents, the Commissioners of Public Works, An Garda Siochána, Permanent Defence Forces, Civil Defence, Coast Guard, Community Inshore Rescue Service or recognised rescue services, Customs and Excise, the Receiver of Wrecks and The Shannon Regional Fisheries Board.

    10. encamp or place or erect or cause to be placed or erected on the beach, or dune system appurtenant to the beach, any tent, caravan, camper-van or other temporary dwelling.

    These provisions shall not restrict the exercise by owners or occupiers of properties abutting the beach of long established rights of access thereon and shall not restrict the exercise by any Agency of the State of its statutory powers.

    This bye-law shall not apply to Spanish Point Beach during the Willie Clancy Festival.

    Any person who contravenes a provision of these bye-laws or of any permit or condition or conditions of any permit granted under these bye-laws shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable to an on-the-spot fine of €75.00 for a simple breach of the bye-laws, or to a fine not exceeding euro €1,904.60 on summary conviction.

    Other bye laws:
    http://www.kerrycoco.ie/en/allservices/environment/beaches/beachbye-laws/thefile,8143,en.pdf
    http://www.corkcoco.ie/co/pdf/640037765.pdf
    http://www.dlrcoco.ie/media/media,7516,en.pdf
    https://www.wexford.ie/wex/Departments/Environment/Beaches/BeachBye-Laws2005/

    I can't say that it hasn't happened, but I have not heard of well-behaved, tidy campers being fined or prosecuted for a discreet overnight stay on a beach in Ireland. As regards possible action by the local authority or Gardai, many campers tend to head out on the weekends, when most Council officials are off-duty. I would doubt if many Gardai would care much about or even be aware of the relevant local authority beach bye laws.


  • Registered Users Posts: 64 ✭✭hiromoto


    A few beaches are private property, and it would be trespassing to camp on such property without permission.

    Most beaches are public beaches owned by the State, but they can still be regulated by the bye-laws of the relevant local authority. The relevant local authority bye-laws should be checked. Most can be found with a google search against (for example) "Clare County beach bye laws", which would show the following result: http://www.clarecoco.ie/Accessible_HTML/waste_water_environment/Beach_Bye_laws/Clare_Beach_Bye_Laws.html

    When the relevant bye laws have been located, it is necessary to check:
    (a) whether they apply throughout the year, or just for a portion of the year. Section 2 of the Cork County Council beach bye law states that the bye law only applies in the Summer Season, from 15th May until 31st August. Take a look at the link below, if interested.
    (b) on which beaches camping is prohibited. There is likely to be a schedule with a list of beaches where camping is prohibited.
    (c) whether there are any exclusions for particular beaches. For instance, the Clare County Council beach bye law states that it does not apply to Spanish Point Beach during the Willie Clancy Festival (see quote below).
    (d) whether there are restrictions on other activities such as lighting fires, cooking, walking dogs, fishing, swimming, surfing.
    (e) the penalty for breaching the bye laws.

    From the Clare Co. Co. beach bye laws:





    Other bye laws:
    http://www.kerrycoco.ie/en/allservices/environment/beaches/beachbye-laws/thefile,8143,en.pdf
    http://www.corkcoco.ie/co/pdf/640037765.pdf
    http://www.dlrcoco.ie/media/media,7516,en.pdf
    https://www.wexford.ie/wex/Departments/Environment/Beaches/BeachBye-Laws2005/

    I can't say that it hasn't happened, but I have not heard of well-behaved, tidy campers being fined or prosecuted for a discreet overnight stay on a beach in Ireland. As regards possible action by the local authority or Gardai, many campers tend to head out on the weekends, when most Council officials are off-duty. I would doubt if many Gardai would care much about or even be aware of the relevant local authority beach bye laws.

    Or just chance it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,965 ✭✭✭laoch na mona


    hiromoto wrote: »
    Or just chance it.


    exactly as long as you don't leave a mess no one will know


  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 15,691 Mod ✭✭✭✭Tabnabs


    Camping in the dunes may be a better option, more discreet and safer from any night time wanderers.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,554 ✭✭✭Pat Mustard


    The dunes are better than the beach. You have the beach within striking distance, but you remain out of sight, and you may get cover from the wind.

    Just as regards legality, depending on the relevant bye law, sand dunes may also be prohibited. With respect to camping in Kerry, the Kerry CC beach bye law defines beach as:
    “Beach” means the foreshore and every beach, bank, cliff, sands, sand dune and every area contiguous thereto together with the foreshore waters for a distance of 300 metres seaward from thelow water mark.

    However, Ireland being such a small country, even if no law is broken, stealth is important to a range of outdoor pursuits. If you can arrive and camp and then leave without a trace, that's the way to go.

    I reckon that many of these bye laws that have cropped up over the previous fifteen years are reactions to people tearing up sand dunes with quad bikes or creating a racket with jet skis. Drawing attention seems to be bad news, when it comes to outdoor pursuits in Ireland.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,749 ✭✭✭Smiles35


    The dunes are better than the beach. You have the beach within striking distance, but you remain out of sight, and you may get cover from the wind.

    +1 It's the noise too. It's difficult to relax to the direct noise of the sea.


  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    Hi,


    Can anyone please tell me if there is a beach either in Dublin or Wicklow (preferably the latter) where it is legal to pitch a tent, start a small fire, stay overnight? We're just a family with kids looking for a nice overnight camping spot. We know of plenty inland, but we wanted to try the beach. Some people said Brittas Bay was an option, but then I read online that it is now illegal to camp there.

    Any help is appreciated.

    Thanks



  • Registered Users Posts: 279 ✭✭RockOrBog


    I doubt it. Show me a bit of land in Ireland that somebody hasn't laid claim to.

    On the Atlantic west coast it would be easier I'd imagine.



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