The NSW Government has granted 16 pubs in the Sydney lockout zone exemptions to the law that stops patrons from entering pubs and clubs after 1.30am, but as with all things, there’s a catch.
As Fairfax reports, the exception means that people will be able to enter the venue after 1.30am, however, no alcohol is permitted to be served after 1.30am while only two drinks can be served between 1 and 1.30am.
In addition the venues are not allowed to provide any other “entertainment”, with patrons only allowed to enter to play gaming machines. You know, pokies.
Without the exemption, the current lockout laws state that patrons can’t enter a venue after 1.30am, nor can they order a drink after 3am.
14 venues in the CBD entertainment precinct have been granted the exception including The Albion Place Hotel on George St, V Bar in World Square, Triple 8 Bar in Haymarket, The Criterion Hotel in Pitt Street and Scruffy Murphy’s on Goulburn Street. In Kings Cross, the Bourbon and the Vegas Hotel have been exempted.
The news comes after the landlord of Sydney’s The Star Ballroom Bruce Solomon slammed the laws saying that they have destroyed Sydney’s culture. “…There used to be 25,000 people in the Cross at 2am on a Saturday and now there’s 3000. That’s an 85 per cent drop,” he said.
“There’s little wonder there’s less violence out there.”
Prolific Sydney DJ Simon Caldwall also took aim at the laws this week in an interview with Music Feeds calling Kings Cross a “ghost town” and saying the laws were pushing people to party in “unsupervised areas” which “leaves them open to greater harm.”
The State Government will review the laws in February 2016 – some two years after they were implemented.
Watch: Blow Up The Pokies – The Whitlams