Row over beach fines call

Sun and sand lovers in Benidorm who rise early to secure a prime position by planting parasols and other beach paraphernalia in the sand and then leave them unoccupied could be fined.

The idea comes from local political party Compromis which includes environmentalists, who argue the controversial practice is harmful both to tourists and residents alike. Its leaders are calling for a change in the current legal regime in order to punish offenders. 

Regulations presently ban tents and camping, but make an exception for simpler objects so long as they don’t interfere with beach cleaning. 

Benidorm beaches councillor Lorenzo Martinez has said there are no plans to resort to fines and called for a common sense approach to the problem. But Compromis will demand a vote on the issue in the council’s next full session. 

Costa Blanca North has a variety of approaches to the ‘beach-hoggers’ issue with Gandia recently dispatching police patrols to identify culprits and empowering them to remove any offending objects and issue fines of up to €750 for repeat offenders. 

In Calpe, regulations enable the Local Police to remove any umbrellas and loungers not in use by 9.30am, while in spacious Denia, with 20km of beaches, there are no measures in place as yet.

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