Aussie beach pic sparks heated debate

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A photo of two “reserved” picnic tables at a popular beach in Sydney has gone viral with the snap causing a heated debate.

A post on Reddit erupted earlier this week when a user shared a photo of the two picnic shelters at Bronte Beach in the city’s’ eastern suburbs with a tablecloth and backpack on each table.

In Australia, some councils allow residents to reserve seated areas for private parties and gatherings formally.

However, generally, the “first in, best dressed” rule applies with locals often arriving early to secure a spot until guests arrive — which appears to be the case in the photo.

“Thoughts on people reserving the picnic tables at Bronte beach in the morning during weekends?” the Reddit user asked in a ‘Sydney’ subreddit.

It unsurprisingly attracted a flurry of comments with some stating they thought it was fair, while others slammed the act as “unacceptable”.

“Calling dibs is an ancient tradition in Australia,” one person wrote.

“You always leave someone to guard your camp. Otherwise, it’s not your camp anymore,” a second said.

A third person agreed saying: “As long as there’s people there minding the tables, not just throwing a bunch of tablecloths down and walking off, (I’m) fine with it. First come first served.”

One person said the only time they would do something like this is if they were grabbing things from the car for the picnic.

“But I’d maintain line of sight. Anything else isn’t justified imo,” they added.

“It’s not acceptable,” another demanded. “You can reserve it by sitting there yourself, but not by leaving an item.”

Others agreed saying someone needs to be at the table and if not – there is a time limit.

“If people put stuff down and go back to the car to get more for sure. If they leave it and don’t come back after 30mins – one hour. Then a**holes,” one person wrote.

“If it’s just a tablecloth, and no one is there for 10 min, move their stuff, move yourself in and say ‘it was like this when I got here’,” another joked.

Meanwhile, others described it as “shitty behaviour”.

“This happens a lot over Xmas – NYE break on beaches people set up early in the morning and don’t come back until after lunch,” one person vented.

A Waverley Council spokesperson told that public spaces are generally used fairly, but also asked people not to reserve spots.

“We generally find that people use our public places fairly and that there is space for all to enjoy our parks and reserves,” the spokesperson said.

“On weekends and at other peak times, picnic tables and barbecues do invariably fill up, so we ask people to share our spaces so that everyone can have a turn.

“Waverley is the second most densely populated local government area in Australia outside of the City of Sydney, and we attract millions of visitors every year, so our recreational spaces are at a premium. We ask that people refrain from reserving tables and always have a back-up plan if picnic shelters or barbecues are already in use.”

Read related topics:Sydney