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Outrage over the devastation of a famous beach

Residents have described a wild Christmas party at one of Sydney's most popular beaches as “the worst ever”, as locals pitch in to clean up broken glass and vomit.

Tens of thousands, mostly tourists, probably flocked to Bronte Beach in the east of the city on Monday and slipped into red swimsuits for the annual beach party.

Longtime resident Robert Kokolich, who lives near the beach, said the crowd ignored the alcohol ban and became aggressive when he tried to film them.

“It was the worst ever. It was out of control. Nothing happened in Bondi, but everyone must have come to Bronte … right outside my house,” Mr Kokolich said.

As soon as the sun came out, many people crowded the beaches

Thousands flocked to Bronte Beach on Christmas Day. Image: Supplied

A huge crowd gathered on the beachA huge crowd gathered on the beach

The huge crowd drew the anger of the locals. Image: Supplied

“You felt in danger there… It was very bad. This morning there was broken glass everywhere. Our friends have a little baby, so we thought, 'This is so unfair.'”

Mr Kokolich and his wife Vesna were among many locals who returned to the beach on Boxing Day morning to help council workers clear away the scattered rubbish.

While the beach was “starting to look better” after a few hours of work, Mr Kokolich said locals had cleaned up everything from vomit to tampons.

“It's that bad. When I saw it, I said, 'I'm moving.' I don't want to be part of it… It looks so bad. It's worse than a third world country,” Mr Kokolich said.

Beach cleanup in BronteBeach cleanup in Bronte

A local clears the park on Tuesday morning. Photo: NCA Newswire/ Gaye Gerard

Beach cleanup in BronteBeach cleanup in Bronte

Locals were appalled by the garbage. Photo: NCA Newswire/ Gaye Gerard

Beach cleanup in BronteBeach cleanup in Bronte

A pile of rubbish can be seen in the park. Photo: NCA Newswire/ Gaye Gerard

The event has long been a mecca for thousands of tourists and backpackers who travel to Australia for the summer Christmas experience, but often draws the ire of locals.

A video of the crowd, which Mr Koklich said kept him awake until 2 a.m., was shared online on Tuesday by many residents who were upset about the “disgusting” garbage left there.

Among them is TV star and Bachelor host Osher Gunserberg, who wrote on Tik Tok: “Oh man, the crew left quite a mess too.”

“Should have seen the trash left behind. Disgusting,” one person said. Another added: “(They) treat our beaches like they're worthless.”

Pictured are the piles of rubbish left behind by thousands of revellers who gathered for the Christmas festivities at Bronte Beach. Image: NCA NewsWirePictured are the piles of rubbish left behind by thousands of revellers who gathered for the Christmas festivities at Bronte Beach. Image: NCA NewsWire

The condition of the park has been widely criticized online. Image: NCA NewsWire

The Bronte Surf Life Saving Club, which helped monitor the beach, said it had been a “busy” day and hoped “everyone will take their rubbish with them when the bins are full.”

One local even suggested closing the beach, adding: “This really looks like a nightmare and the mess you all have left behind is a disgrace… disgusting behavior.”

For Mayor Paula Masselos, closing the popular beach is out of the question because city council staff considered this too difficult given the size of the park and its many entrances.

“We've looked at things like introducing ticket sales, but that's just not logistically possible. It's a big park with lots of entrances. People are going to come in anyway,” she said.

“So it's really about how we control the crowds and how quickly we can clean up afterward. And that's exactly what we've done. We've been discussing this (issue) for several years.”

Ms Masselos said there had been a large police presence in the park to detect and destroy illegally consumed alcohol and that visitors were informing each other of the measures.

Thousands of revellers flocked to the famous Bronte Beach to celebrate Christmas Day in the sun. Image: InstagramThousands of revellers flocked to the famous Bronte Beach to celebrate Christmas Day in the sun. Image: Instagram

The event is popular with tourists from Europe, Great Britain and South America. Image: Instagram

Importantly, Ms Masselos – who described the event as “Christmas for orphans” – said council staff even monitored social media ahead of the Christmas party.

“Everyone has the right to come here, but we ask people to do the right thing. It's always going to be difficult given the numbers,” she said.

“The crowds were so big that we had trouble getting into some of these areas… But there was no bad behavior, which is important so people can enjoy the day.”

A Waverly Council spokesman said in a statement that while they were overall satisfied with Monday's behaviour, the amount of rubbish was “disappointing”.

“Our rangers were on site yesterday along with the police and ensured that the beach remained a safe environment for everyone,” the spokesman said.

“Our hard-working Open Spaces and cleaning teams have been working last night and today to clear away the significant and disappointing amount of rubbish left behind by beachgoers.

“Public spaces like Bronte Beach are open to everyone and so we ask people to respect our beautiful open spaces and our local community.

“We ask that visitors please take all trash and belongings with them when they leave so that everyone can enjoy our beaches.”

The wild scenes follow several similar incidents at the same location. Last year, shocking photos of the destroyed grass were uploaded to social media, sparking outrage.

At a similar event in the midst of the pandemic, the Federal Minister of Immigration threatened to revoke the visas of all visitors who violated Covid regulations.

Thousands of revellers flocked to the famous Bronte Beach to celebrate Christmas Day in the sun. Image: InstagramThousands of revellers flocked to the famous Bronte Beach to celebrate Christmas Day in the sun. Image: Instagram

In recent years, the garbage scattered on the beach has angered locals. Image: Instagram

Thousands of revellers flocked to the famous Bronte Beach to celebrate Christmas Day in the sun. Image: InstagramThousands of revellers flocked to the famous Bronte Beach to celebrate Christmas Day in the sun. Image: Instagram

Thousands of revellers flocked to the famous Bronte Beach to celebrate Christmas Day in the sun. Image: Instagram

In December 2020, Sydney's Northern Beaches region tightened rules for the holidays, and only 100 people were allowed to gather for an outdoor event on Christmas Day.

However, witnesses to a Christmas party on the beach in Bronte at the time spoke of huge crowds of people drinking and mostly not wearing face masks.

Still, the event did have some supporters, with videos of Monday's crowd quickly uploaded to Tik Tok by local and international accounts.

“I want to know who coordinated this because the memo got through,” said user Fifihay.

Another video of the event by Canadian content creator Rory Court has been viewed more than 11,000 times.

Waverly Council and NSW Police have been contacted for comment.