The lockout laws have, without any shadow of a doubt, had a huge impact on the once-great vibrancy and nightlife of Sydney, as well as deeply impacting the lives of nightlife owners, convenience store owners, food vendors – pretty much anyone that was previously open to the public after the sun goes down.
In December, the NSW government announced the slight relaxation of the lockout laws, meaning that lockout would move from 1:30am to 2am, last drinks would be moved from 3:00am to 3:30am, and bottlos would be able to serve alcohol until 11pm rather 10pm.
However, these relaxations for licensed venues would only occur with approval from government bodies, and only venues with live entertainment can apply for the change.
So, the NSW government has now announced that World Bar in Kings Cross has been given approval for the later trading hours, which is the first bar in the former nightlife district, which has been severely affected by the laws. The venue made an eloquent submission to Liquor & Gaming NSW back in May last year that outlined how the laws had affected their business (and to put it bluntly, shit was pretty bad).
Stonewall Hotel on Oxford Street in Darlinghurst, a popular gay bar, has also been given approval for the half hour change.
Minister for Racing Paul Toole announced the approvals today:
“The later closing time for Stonewall has been approved in time for the 2017 Mardi Gras.
Stonewall and World Bar demonstrated a genuine orientation towards live entertainment. Live entertainment helps provide more diverse nightlife options.”
Since the announcement of the relaxation of the lockout laws, only three other Sydney venues have been approved for the 30 minute pushback: The Palace Hotel, ArtHouse Hotel and the Observer Hotel.
Liquor & Gaming NSW is reportedly currently assessing another 15 applications from other venues, so we’ll keep you updated on the progress as the news arises. Fingers crossed, Sydney fam.
Photo: Facebook / World Bar.