‘Cut red tape to allow more farmers to host campers’

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Grey nomads camping on farms
How tightly regulated should camping on farms be?

The tough regulations that make it difficult for farmers in Victoria to allow small numbers of self-contained campers to stay on their land for a night or two are coming under intense scrutiny.

According to the current rules, landholders earning as little as $10 a night from having people camp on their properties must meet the same regulations as commercial caravan parks.

The Weekly Times newspaper reveals that, under current Victorian rules, any farmer that makes an income from campers on their properties must provide:

  • Showers and toilets.
  • Hot water.
  • Sewerage or septic systems.
  • Lit roadways and paths.
  • An on-site manager to be on hand during ‘office hours’.

The Victorian Government is required to undertake a compulsory review of the caravan park regulations this year, but changes, if any, will not come into effect until next year.

Critics say that farmers need to apply for permits as if they’re setting up a big caravan park, but the reality that often they are just providing a parking space for a fully self-contained camper.

While there are heightened calls for an overhaul of current rules in order to make it easier for farmers to earn a secondary income during difficult times, there is also a feeling that safety shouldn’t be compromised.

Victorian Farmers Federation president David Jochinke told the Weekly Times that while campers travelling to regional areas to experience farm life was a ‘good thing’ there were ‘safety concerns of being on worksites, which farms are’.

“If this is becoming a future trend we need to get in front of it,” Mr Jochinke said. “By the sounds of it, the review is a good thing,”

A Victorian Government spokeswoman told The Weekly Times that “local councils are the responsible authority for reviewing planning permits for commercial activities on farming land”.

The Government said the review of the state’s regulations would examine camping on private land.

Public submissions close June 23.

  • Do you think the rules governing what Victorian farmers have to do to allow campers on their properties is too strict? Comment below.

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21 Responses to ‘Cut red tape to allow more farmers to host campers’

  1. Litigation and Red tape are on everyone’s minds these days. No longer are people expected to take responsibility for their own actions and/or stupidity. I have no doubt that most farmers would welcome the grey nomads and vice versa. It would be a win win, it’ll be when the unscrupulous and recalcitrants move in that the farmers will have a headache. I would love to see this proposal progress with the appropriate safeguards for both parties. One would hope that common sense can prevail which unfortunately is not all that common these days. The farmers may find a group of activists moving onto their land and all hell would follow. Great initiative

  2. Far far to strict.
    It should be for self contained rigs only and if campers are allowed just a long drop toilet or two.
    At worst a dump point installed.

  3. If campers choose to camp in the conditions available they should be allowed. Increasingly vans are self contained. Victoria is increasingly becoming a socialist state with everything controlled by the government. We just need to be more creative and find ways to camp in a relaxed environment.

    • Socialism? This will be the Caravan parks complaining to local councils.

  4. While everything is going well there will be no problem but the minute someone is injured all hell will break loose particularly if its a kid.

  5. If that’s the rules for farmers, how come the same rules don’t apply to forestry and other camping areas on Gubbermint property?

    • A very good point ,cheers

  6. When other’s can rent their city pads out on Air B&B and cause so much annoyance & stress to their neighbours why on earth are councils harassing farmers for doing similar but not causing any disturbance to others and making far less money from it? Antiquated lawsneef to be revised

    • Such a great point!!!!

  7. I hope review makes it easier for landholders to have a couple/ few sites. It is best solution for everyone, small income for land owner and offers great alternative / option to c.p and free camps

  8. Ppl need to take responsibility of their own actions… why not have enter at own risk signs be used as this may make the occupiers be responsible for own actions…. yes let the farmers make the additional small income they are making from having fully self contained campers on their properties

  9. Absolutely ridiculous. Farmers should be able to do whatever thay want with their own land as long as the environment doesn’t suffer. Most people who camp on private land are self contained anyway & require nothing but a safe place to camp.

  10. A few regulations are ok but be realistic . only a certain number of vehicles and a signed form to take responsibility for your own actions. If a larger group need to rent a space then they need permission from the council…maybe for a charity function or group sport or a club function.(these could provide their own mobile bathroom and lighting.) Hot water should not be a requirement at all.

  11. Don’t charge, just ask for a donation for upkeep. Same as some National Parks.

  12. Uber are going to trial helicopter taxis in Melbourne in the near future.
    Victorian Government is very selective. Nothing to do with farmers and camping you say; it has a lot to do with palms being greased and the poor old cockles that can’t afford to.

  13. Our country is so regulated it’s laughable and ridiculous!

  14. Let the free market reign! Remove the red tape! Suggest all Grey Nomads write to thier local state member. I have.

  15. How is this any different then camping in the bush or on rivers anywhere in Aus? There are no lights, toilets etc out there!

  16. What if it’s not a farm, but just a good sized block? Not a workplace. Should be owner onus applies anywhere anyway.

  17. Let the farmer make a dollar having a few campers stay, his/their choice. But develop a rule to prevent it becoming a Woodstock festiville. And apply the rule to farmers that allows so many unserviced free camps to exist on government land currently. The $10 fee is probably the issue, but would not cover liability insurance, which might in its self be an issue. Hope they sort it. Ignore the workplace smokescreen….

  18. Totally self contained only with a donation made to the farmer as a thanks for allowing you to stop there

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