Freedom campers park for the night at Ocean View about 6pm last Friday. Photo by Peter McIntosh.
Some Ocean View residents feel freedom campers are flouting
the camping rules and overcrowding a local seaside reserve.
Concerned residents contacted the Otago Daily Times
saying they wanted the Dunedin City Council to enforce
freedom camping rules in the area, as it was doing in
It was reported in the ODT last week the council had
taken a sterner approach to those flouting the rules related
to freedom camping in Macandrew Bay and had put up more
signs. Security patrols were visiting the area to move
campers if allocated spaces were full.
Up to five non self-contained vehicles are allowed to park
overnight at designated areas in Ocean View, Macandrew Bay
Enforcing the rules at Ocean View should be the ''minimum''
the council did, one Ocean View resident told the ODT.
''A sign is nothing unless it's policed,'' the man, who did
not wished to be identified, said.
Up to 22 vehicles were staying overnight in the area and the
area was ''absolutely all over the place'', he said.
''They are getting up, putting all their kit up . . . clothes
are all over the trees, they are stripping off ... ''
He was not against freedom campers. However, he wanted the
number of vehicles using the area to be kept to the five the
council had agreed to.
Another resident said he felt the community had been
''relegated behind everyone else'' and was being ''literally
eaten out from under us'' by freedom campers.
Not all the locals are worried about the visitors, as another
resident whose house overlooks the car park said she had
found the campers ''quite entertaining''.
''It doesn't worry me too much as long as they are using the
toilets,'' she said.
She had ''yelled out the windows a couple of times and told
campers to use the toilets'', but she believed the campers
were only resorting to using the bushes because the
facilities could not cope with the numbers using the camping
Saddle Hill Community Board chairman Scott Weatherall said
those he had spoken to were ''fairly supportive of what's
''It's almost too successful,'' he said.
However, if people had concerns he would raise the matter
with the council.
Council parks manager Lisa Wheeler said the council would
look at using security patrols at the site ''if any issue
arises that warrants needing to send them''.
She was only aware of one complaint related to the site, but
if more were made the council would assess the situation.
It was a trial and if it was found Ocean View was an
inappropriate location for a freedom camping site, it could
be changed, she said.