The poster for netflix series Byron Baes
The poster for netflix series Byron Baes

'We don't want to be a reality show punchline': Byron locals

Northern Rivers councils and government departments have been asked to hamper production of a planned Netflix reality show based in Byron Bay.

Byron Baes has been recently announced as a new reality show to be made by Eureka Productions.

A petition which has amassed more than 3000 names at time of publication has called on the Byron, Ballina, Lismore and Tweed councils, the NSW Department of Planning Industry and Environment, the RMS, NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service and the NSW Waterways Authority to refuse filming permits for the program.

The petition was launched by Tess Hall and posted on a GetUp page.

"The environment and community of Byron Bay and the larger Northern Rivers region are being used as a filming backdrop for a "docusoap" titled 'Byron Baes'," Ms Hall said on the petition page.

"We, the community want all relevant statutory authorities to refuse to grant the production filming permits for any and all local and state government land, roads, parks, and waterways proposed for use during filming of the series.

Byron Bay influencer Elyse Knowles, rumoured to be appearing in Netflix series Byron Baes.
Byron Bay influencer Elyse Knowles, rumoured to be appearing in Netflix series Byron Baes.

 

"We further request that any filming permits already granted be rescinded in light of the detrimental impact to both our community and the environment.

"We are a community experiencing significant challenges driven by influencer culture and rapidly-shifting demographics of residents."

Netflix has released scant information about the show so far, and it's unclear when it's expected to be available to viewers.

Elyse Knowles is rumoured to be among those who will appear on the show.

Netflix has announced Byron Baes would be produced by Eureka Productions with Emma Lamb - who has worked on Married At First Sight Australia and The Real Housewives of Sydney - as executive producer.

Eureka Productions co-CEO Chris Culvenor said the show would boast "a compelling case, spectacular settings and some truly addictive drama".

"Byron Baes has all the binge-worthy ingredients," he said.

"Eureka is thrilled to be working with Netflix on this love letter to one of the world's most perfect playgrounds."

But Ms Hall said the community doesn't want to be "cast as the perfect backdrop and magnet for social media influencers".

"Rather than using our region as a reality show punch line we want our Local, State and Federal government representatives and relevant regulatory authorities to focus on supporting our community to address systemic issues of housing affordability, coastal erosion, increasing unemployment, traffic management challenges, low high school completion rates and high levels of gendered and domestic violence," she said in the petition.

"We want our voice to be heard and we do not want to deal with the fallout of being showcased on a global stage in a way that can only harm our local environment and community."

Northern Rivers councils and government departments, as well as Eureka Productions and Netflix, have been approached for comment.



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