Although the lockout laws will remain in effect in the Kings Cross for now, the industry-crippling laws will finally allow Sydney’s live music venues and nightclubs to scrap the 1.30am last entry law for licensed venues, as well as removing restrictions on bottle shop closing times statewide.
The original laws were implemented by former Premier Barry O’Farrell in 2014 following two alcohol-related ‘coward punch’ deaths on Kings Cross, and although violent incidents were indeed subdued, the laws had a disastrous effect on Sydney’s nightlife. Innumerable venues and nightclubs were forced to shut due to the lockouts, and it’s arguable that Sydney’s live music scene hasn’t been quite the same ever since.
In a statement regarding today’s news, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian voiced her support for Sydney returning to its position as Australia’s ‘only truly global city’, but said her government’s focus was still based upon community safety – “Sydney has transformed dramatically over recent years, and we need to ensure we have a strong and vibrant night-time economy that reflects our position as Australia’s only truly global city.”
Revisit our Musicology feature on the Don’t Kill Live Music movement here.