By James Atkinson

Liquor authorities were not persuaded by Woolworths' arguments in favour of opening a new Dan Murphy's store in Byron Bay, northern New South Wales.

In rejecting the store application, the Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority (ILGA) said the broader Byron Bay community is currently exposed to unacceptably high rates of crime and disturbance, much of which is alcohol-related.

ILGA chairman Chris Sidoti rejected Woolworths' argument that the store was unlikely to increase the total volume of liquor consumed across the Byron community.

He said that while "substitution effects" are likely to occur at the expense of existing liquor businesses in the area, the new Dan Murphy's store would be quite large by local standards.

"At around 1093 square metres, the premises will dwarf any of the incumbent stand-alone liquor stores or hotel bottle shops that presently trade in Byron Bay," the ILGA said.

"In fact it will rival the combined floor space of all the other incumbent packaged liquor stores in Byron Bay."

The authority said it accepted submissions by residents that Byron Bay is "a town in which people may be observed walking the streets with a 'slab' of beer on each shoulder, or pushing overflowing shopping trolleys of liquor down the street to their holiday accommodation".

Woolworths has not yet indicated its next move following the ruling.

The Shout Team

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  1. This is wrong! Byron bays crime rate is being overly exaggerated in a bid to block good growth. If the crime rate is that bad,then obviously the present system of alcohol availability is not working. Maybe it has something to do with all the 6 packs of cheap plonk aimed at young persons that are the norm in any Byron bottle outlet. As for finding a nice bottle of wine to dine with,forget it. And security wise,where do I start? Well let’s be clear on one thing here,you won’t have any underage persons accessing alcohol from Dan murphys,they have trained staff and security guards,extra lighting,a good safe place to browse and shop. Get real Byron,keep up with the times and accept responsible consumption of alcohol,not overpriced booze sold in dingy bottle shops aimed at people who have no other choice but to end up sloshed.

  2. I too find this rather offensive and rather obsurd, progress in Byron is well overdue. Dan Murphys liquor shops staff are very well trained and that goes for all of it’s employees. Woolworths is a very professional and a well respected Australian Company. Just because it’s a big liquor store does not mean that it’s surrounding constituents are going drink more alcohol. This statement is rediculously over the top, no one can force me to drink more alcohol and i would not drink more alcohol even it was for free. Stop being arrogant and allow for progress. Yours thankfully from a concerned 40 year old constituent.

  3. Such a shame as we need a Dan Murphys. The other 3 bottle shops are so over priced & 2 are owned by the same group. Some healthy competition would have been good. The late night alcohol violence will continue any way. Its caused by the nightclubs not the bottle shops.

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