Police have been given powers to crack down on the latest sunbed wars battle in Spain.
Local sunbathers have taken to grabbing the best spots before dawn in Benidorm to beat Brit tourists.
They then abandon them to go back to bed until the sun is shining.
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Council chiefs in the holiday resort said they were aware of the problem.
But they claim it is just like other popular beach destinations and not a deliberate dirty tricks campaign by locals.
However, they have vowed to crack down on the brazen sunbed hoggers if they see any issues.
They say police have been given powers to remove items abandoned on the sand where it is creating conflict.
Monica Gomez, Benidorm councillor for beaches and the environment, said: “If people persist in this sort of behaviour where they abandon sunbeds and umbrellas and generate conflict with other beach users, the police can sanction them for a reiteration of a practice that is not permitted.”
It comes after pictures showed Spaniards grabbing the best spots by the sea before dawn when many UK holidaymakers were still out partying or snoring in bed.
The photos showed beach lovers described as Benidorm locals setting up large umbrellas and deckchairs to get the best spots to soak up the sun when it rose.
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Ms Gomez did, however, deny that Spanish ‘early-risers’ were deliberately trying to deprive British holidaymakers of the best beach spots.
The councillor said: “It happens in Benidorm as well as other holiday resorts.
“There are cases of people who put out their sun umbrellas and sun loungers after beach cleaning finishes around 6am and then go for a stroll along the beach before the sun gets too strong.
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“People that get up this early are not doing it with the aim of deliberately depriving British holidaymakers of the best spots on the front line of the beach, far from it.
“In Spain there are people who traditionally get up very early to go to the beach, meaning others who turn up later such as other Spaniards, British tourists or people of any other nationality, have to pick spots further away from the shoreline.
“Fortunately, the beaches in Benidorm are large and comfortable and have great amenities, meaning they don’t have to be by the shoreline to enjoy a magnificent day at the beach.”
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