Byron Shire

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This article is about the local government area. For the regional town, see Byron Bay, New South Wales.
Byron Shire
New South Wales
Byron LGA NSW.png
Location within New South Wales
Coordinates 28°33′S 153°30′E / 28.550°S 153.500°E / -28.550; 153.500Coordinates: 28°33′S 153°30′E / 28.550°S 153.500°E / -28.550; 153.500
Population 29,209 (2011 census)[1]
 • Density 51.542/km2 (133.494/sq mi)
Established 1906
Area 566.7 km2 (218.8 sq mi)
Mayor Simon Richardson
Council seat Mullumbimby
Region Northern Rivers
State electorate(s) Ballina
Federal Division(s) Richmond
2013 Byron Shire Council Logo.png
Website Byron Shire
LGAs around Byron Shire:
Tweed Tweed Tasman Sea
Lismore Byron Shire Tasman Sea
Lismore Ballina Tasman Sea

Byron Shire is a local government area located in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales, Australia. The shire is located adjacent to the Tasman Sea about 50 kilometres (31 mi) south of the Queensland border. The shire, administered from the town of Mullumbimby, covers an area of 566.7 square kilometres (218.8 sq mi), and has existed as a local government entity since 1906. The shire was named for Cape Byron, itself named by Captain Cook in May 1770 in honour of Admiral John Byron.

The Mayor of Byron Shire Council is Cr. Simon Richardson, a member of the Greens.


Byron Shire was created on 7 March 1906 under the Shires Act 1906 (NSW) as one of 134 local government areas in regional New South Wales. On 16 May 1906, a temporary council of five members was appointed to administer it, and elections were held in November. On 4 December, the council convened for the first time with William Baker as its inaugural president. William Baker was born in Great Stanmore, England. His cousin, Alfred Joseph Baker was the first person to score a goal in international football against Scotland in 1870.

On 1 July 1908, the Mullumbimby Municipality was created out of part of Byron. On 1 October 1980, the municipality and the shire were re-amalgamated by direction of the Minister for Local Government.

Towns and localities[edit]

Byron (SE)
Mullumbimby/Brunswick (NE)
Other (W)


At the 2006 census, Byron Shire had a population of 28,766.[2]

Byron Region[3] State[4]
Median age 41 42 37
Median weekly individual income $383 $370 $461
 % of residents born overseas 25.3 17.8 31.0
 % Indigenous population 1.5 3.3 2.1

The most popular religious affiliations in descending order in the 2006 census were no religion (30%), Catholic, Anglican, Uniting and Presbyterian. A small Jewish minority also exists within the shire.


Census populations for the Byron Shire and Mullumbimby Municipality between 1911 and 1966, sourced from the New South Wales Statistical Register, were as follows:

Year Total Byron Mullumbimby
1911 7,504 6,553 951
1921 9,628 8,299 1,329
1933 9,329 7,967 1,362
1947 10,393 8,784 1,609
1954 10,921 8,904 2,017
1961 10,469 8,505 1,964
1966 9,953 7,972 1,981

Later census figures for the entire area are as follows:

Year Population
1976 10,916
1981 15,426
1986 18,342
1991 22,599
1996 27,007
2001 28,916
2006 29,423
2011 29,209


Current composition and election method[edit]

Byron Shire Council is composed of nine Councillors, including the Mayor, for a fixed four-year term of office. The Mayor is directly elected while the eight other Councillors are elected proportionally as one entire ward. The most recent election was held on 8 September 2012, and the makeup of the Council, including the Mayor, is as follows:[5][6]

Party Councillors
  Independents and Unaligned 5
  The Greens 3
  Our Sustainable Future 1
Total 9

The current Council, elected in 2012, in order of election, is:[6]

Councillor Party Notes
  Simon Richardson Greens Mayor[5]
  Diane Woods Independent
  Rose Wanchap Greens Elected on Simon Richardson's ticket
  Sol Ibrahim Unaligned
  Chris Cubis Independent Elected on Diane Woods' ticket
  Duncan Dey Greens Elected on Simon Richardson's ticket
  Basil Cameron Our Sustainable Future
  Paul Spooner Labor
  Alan Hunter Independent Elected on Diane Woods' ticket


  1. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Byron Shire". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 10 April 2015. 
  2. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Community Profile Series : Byron (A) (Local Government Area)". 2006 Census of Population and Housing. Retrieved 27 October 2010. 
  3. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Richmond-Tweed (Statistical Region)". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 27 October 2010. 
  4. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "New South Wales". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 27 October 2010. 
  5. ^ a b "Byron Shire Council - Mayoral Election". Local Government Election 2012. New South Wales Electoral Commission. 12 September 2012. Retrieved 6 October 2012. 
  6. ^ a b "Byron Shire Council: Summary of First Preference and Group Votes for each Candidate". Local Government Election 2012. New South Wales Electoral Commission. 13 September 2012. Retrieved 6 October 2012.