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Melbourne council wants to BAN backyard barbecues - after receiving a petition with five signatures

A Melbourne council could ban backyard barbecues after a petition was launched calling for an end to 'offensive emissions'. 

Bayside Council, in the city's southern suburbs, revealed on Thursday a resident had proposed the prohibition of outdoor solid-fuel cooking and heating due to the smell.

The ban would mean locals must say goodbye to burning wood and charcoal for backyard fires and outdoor cooking.

But the proposal has struggled to gain popularity as it only had five signatures on its petition when it was handed to council in August 2018. 

A Melbourne council could ban backyard barbecues in an attempt to prohibit 'offensive emissions' (stock image)

'Clause 31 of Local Law No.2 bans the burning of any offensive materials or any materials that cause offensive emissions of smoke and odour to enter any neighbouring property,' a brief of the proposal reads.

'This idea seeks to include a ban on the burning of solid fuel (eg wood and charcoal) for outdoor cooking or heating due to offensive emissions.'

Bayside Council said they receive about three complaints on the issue each year.

Brighton's Andrea Swain declared the plan to be 'the most un-Australian thing ever'. 

'How can you put a stop to families, friends gathering around a barbecue?' she told The Herald Sun. 

Ms Swain said she found it 'so strange' someone would want to ban charcoal and wood fires for cooking. 

Bayside Council (pictured), in the city's southern suburbs, revealed on Thursday a resident had proposed the barring of outdoor solid-fuel cooking and heating due to the smell

'Surely if the smoke was that harmful, the people eating the meat would be ones to get sick,' she said.

Brighton East couple Sandra and Gianluca Bocci told The Age the proposal was 'nonsensical'.

'How could you possibly take that away from people, especially now when we're not allowed to be out and about? We only have our backyards,' Mrs Bocci said.

The couple use their backyard oven to cook pizzas, whole roast chickens, bread and biscuits. 

The newly ignited debate on solid-fuel cooking and heating comes from the the council's 'have your say' initiative.

The ban would mean locals must say goodbye to burning wood and charcoal for backyard fires and outdoor cooking (stock image)

'Eight new local law ideas have been raised by some residents, including through petitions to council,' Bayside Council said. 

'These ideas will only be considered for inclusion in the revised Local Law if they receive strong community support.'

Residents of Beaumaris, Black Rock, Brighton, Brighton East, Cheltenham, Cromer, Dendy, Hampton, Hampton East, Highett, Moorabbin and Sandringham are encouraged to fill in a survey on the proposed laws. 

The survey will allow the council to 'accurately measure widespread support or opposition' to the ideas. 

Bayside City Council's mayor Clarke Martin said he knew the suggested change to backyard barbecues would be 'divisive'.

'For someone who is having a romantic evening by the fire, it's beautiful for them, but if the smoke is coming across and affecting 20 units down the road then it's a problem,' he said. 

The council will undertake more community consultation on the barbecue issue early next year. 

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