A BEACH town in south-eastern Spain has banned bathers from playing bat and ball and other games on the sands and has threatened to fine anyone who urinates in the sea €750.
San Pedro del Pinatar, in northern Murcia and close to the Alicante province border, has also banned nudism on all its beaches, will issue fines for 'beach-blocking' – or reserving spaces with towels and sunbeds in advance – and the aforementioned amount will double for holding barbecues on the beach.
Otherwise occupying the beach for 'unauthorised commercial reasons' will attract sanctions of up to €3,000.
Taking animals onto the beach is included in the prohibited activities, although generally, most beaches in Spain will not allow people to walk their dogs or ride their horses on the sand between about March or April and October.
Taking stereos or other musical devices such as MP3 players, iPods or using mobile phones for the same purpose is also against the rules 'provided the decibel level does not exceed established limits.
Even cycling on the seafront promenade, on pushbikes or tandems, is banned and subject to fines.
'Misuse of the foot showers' – undefined – removing the famous mineral mud from the Mar Menor inland sea, or washing with soap in the sea will mean bathers are fined €750.
Beach ball games are banned because they 'could cause a nuisance to other bathers', says the new local bye-law.
Residents and regular beach-goers in San Pedro del Pinatar have criticised the anti-nudism rule most harshly.
The La Llana beach, some distance from the town centre – far enough that nobody would stumble across it accidentally and be offended – has long been a nudist beach, but now, bathers will have to cover up.
The Spanish Naturism Federation plans to take legal action against the town hall for abuse of power.
It says nudism cannot be banned on naturist beaches without a State law being passed first.
“San Pedro del Pinatar is the first town in Spain to ban nudism on every single one of its beaches – and the others who do so, just 10 in the whole country, only ban naked bathing on urban beaches,” the Federation complains.
Other rules in force include no 'unauthorised' travellling salespeople, no surfing or other water sports in the direct bathing area, and no boats of any description within 200 metres of the shoreline.
Photograph from San Pedro del Pinatar town hall