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What will happen with the Gold Coast World Surfing Reserve?

Big Groyne Kirra back in action © GCWSR



World Surfing Reserves

Update from Andrew McKinnon, chairman of Gold Coast World Surfing Reserve 

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 3 January, 2016 - The Gold Coast World Surfing Reserve (Burleigh Point to Snapper Rocks) was approved as the 8th WSR on the 15th of October, 2015 by the World Governing Body, Save the Waves Coalition as the latest yearly nomination.

WSR's are a relatively new concept, established in 2008 with the famous Malibu Point, California as the first World Class break to be designated.

Manly Beach to Freshwater, Sydney was Australia's first World Surfing Reserve in 2012. WSRs are about preserving and protecting beach and surf amenity and the legacy for future generations.

Like Manly, Gold Coast was endorsed as a National Surfing Reserve in 2012. In fact both Gold Coast and Manly are the only two dual endorsed WSR/NSR designations in the World.

If you believe that things happen in three, the evolution of the Gold Coast World Surfing Reserve is the culmination of the three significant events that paved the way.

1. 2009 Australia Day Paddle out to bring Back Kirra. 1500 paddled out in the shape of Australia to lament the loss of Kirra Point. Afterwards both sides of the Qld State Government offered $1.5 million to restore Kirra.

2. 2014 North Kirra Rally to oppose the 4 billion dollar Ocean Terminal, 4000 marked WSR in the sand to establish the case for a Gold Coast World Surfing Reserve.

3. Two years later after support from both the Qld State Government and Gold Coast City Council, Save the Waves coalition (World Governing Body of World Surfing Reserves) approved the Gold Coast from Burleigh Point to Snapper Rocks as the 8th WSR in October 2015. The next official step is the Dedication Ceremony at Point Danger on top of Dbah Hill on the Qld side on Tuesday 8th March 2016.

100 invited guests will be invited to attend the Gold Coast World Surfing Reserve Dedication Ceremony including World Champs like Stephanie Gilmore, Mick Fanning and Joel Parkinson including boardriding club reps amongst a diverse list of beach, surf and ocean users.

The Premier of Qld Annastacia Palaszczuk and the Qld Governor Paul de Jersey have confirmed as has Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate. Gold Coast WSR Patron and Ambassador Wayne "Rabbit" Bartholomew will be the MC for the historic ceremony that will be attended by the Executive of Save the Waves Nik Strong-Cvetich and Nick Mucha of California.

A Peruvian Delegation from Huanchaco which is the 5th WSR will be represented by Felipe Pomar 1965 World Champion and Huanchaco WSR ambassadors Carlos Antonio Ferrer and Carlos Ucanan Huevito. 2015 WSL World Longboard champion Piccolo Clemente and former Peruvian National Champion Roberto Muelas Meza are the latest pro surfers to join the Peruvian Huanchaco WSR committee to attend.

The City of Gold Coasts Surf Management Plan will be released in January. It will underpin the GCWSR as the authoritative document that aligns the World Surfing Reserve with Councils Ocean Beaches Strategy and will be overseen by a Local Stewardship Committee (LSC).

One idea is to impress the surf safety message as part of the World Surfing Reserve not just simply promoting WSR location for Global recognition. SMP will help deal with the overcrowding issue without hard and fast regulation. Other ideas such as creating added surfing amenity with construction of artificial reefs and breaks have been raised via the Surf Management Plan advisory committee.

The Tweed Daily News will be producing a 40 page special one-off edition booklet on the Gold Coast World Surfing Reserve which will be released before the WSR Dedication Ceremony in March.

Simon Swilly Williams will be showcasing 10 life-size surfing prints in the Coolangatta Strand shopping Centre during February that will be auctioned off as a fundraiser during the Quiksilver Pro on Thursday night 17th of March at the Rainbow Bay Surf Club. A party not to be missed!

NY resolution - Don’t forget to have fun, share the waves, avoid surf rage and hoot your mates. The best surfer is the one who’s having the most amount of fun!

Andrew McKinnon

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