A NEW round of beach wars has opened in Benidorm and Brits are being warned they may face a fine if they join in.
The local council in the Spanish holiday hotspot says it is fed up with sunbathers flocking to the beach as early as 7am to grab the best seats.
Many will leave the beach once they've reserved a spot, only to return hours later to the frustration of other holidaymakers who can't find space to enjoy the view.
Benidorm council says this has become a daily problem, with people placing towels, blankets, umbrellas and sunbeds to "reserve" their slots.
Some holidaymakers have even been caught using baby pushchairs or shopping trolleys to mark out their territory.
The local council says none of the resort's beaches are free from the controversial practice which resembles "the first row of a cinema or theatre".
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One tourist said: "It's maddening!"
Now, the authority is calling time and warning that the first six metres between the water and the sand should not be occupied at any time.
This is to allow beach users the chance to walk along the shoreline unhindered.
Benidorm council says local people also have the power to act and can remove items if they notice the spots are not being occupied for hours.
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Councillor for beaches, Mónica Gómez. told Spanish newspaper Informacion.es: "It's an issue that worries us and we are taking care of it."
As the war rumbles on, some tourists are taking matters into their own hands by physically clearing plots which have been reserved but not occupied for hours, which can lead to confrontation when the people eventually turn up.
But those who do get up early to claim their place are unrepentant.
One said: "Why should I worry? Let other people get up as early as I do!"
Sunlounger hogging has been plaguing holiday resorts for years, with more tourists slamming the practice this summer.
One woman was left fuming after hotel guests blocked every single sunbed – despite reservations being banned.
And another video showed some crafty guests' new way to get around this rule – by placing their towels down on the floor at the entrance to the pool area.
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