Sydneysiders have looked on in envy as people flocked to nightclub dancefloors in other cities – but NSW restrictions could ease as soon as tomorrow.
Sydneysiders have looked on in envy as people flocked to nightclub dancefloors in other cities – but NSW restrictions could ease as soon as tomorrow.

Wild scenes as crowds pack clubs

Revellers enjoying a pseudo Australia Day long weekend have packed venues across the country with footage showing crowds dancing shoulder-to-shoulder inside nightclubs.

But the scenes are a far cry from those in New South Wales where dancing is prohibited under current coronavirus restrictions, except for a select group at weddings.

Hundreds of people partied at Cloudland in Brisbane's Fortitude Valley on Monday night for Fluffy's Disney Party.

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The event in Brisbane saw people crowded around the stage. Picture: Instagram
The event in Brisbane saw people crowded around the stage. Picture: Instagram

Videos posted on social media show attendees crowding around the stage, on staircases and up balconies.

Attendees line the balcony and stairs. Picture: Instagram
Attendees line the balcony and stairs. Picture: Instagram

Shirtless revellers also gathered on Monday in Melbourne's Prahran, flooding the dancefloor for a Summer Nights party.

"After a year of waiting to get the go-ahead and to make sure we could run a COVID-safe event, the management of WINK WINK have given us the green light," organisers Rock City said.

"For some people this will be the first time they have danced in a year … We all desperately need this."

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Rock City, Melbourne. Picture: Instagram
Rock City, Melbourne. Picture: Instagram

CURRENT RESTRICTIONS

After the hotel quarantine cluster in early January, restrictions eased in Queensland to allow patrons into hotels, pubs, clubs and nightclubs to stand while eating or drinking, including standing for a drink at the bar.

"Patrons and staff should continue to practise physical distancing (1.5m between people, unless from the same household)," the Queensland business restrictions state.

"Venues are required to manage the risk and numbers of congregated patrons in accordance with their industry COVID Safe plan or checklist."

Dancing in licensed venues operating with COVID Safe plans is allowed indoors and outdoors, "provided that no more than one person per 2sq m dances in the dance area".

In Victoria, pubs, bars and nightclubs can open for seated and standing service of food and/or drinks.

Venues can host up to 25 people before density limits apply, and can use the rule of one person per 2sq m if they are using electronic record-keeping.

"There are no limits on the size of group you can dine with, sit or stand in," the Victorian government website states.

Venues must apply a 4sq m rule to the dance floor, with a maximum of 50 people dancing at one time per dance area.

In Greater Sydney, attendance at pubs, clubs and bars is capped at 300 or one person per 4sq m of publicly accessible space, whichever is less.

Outside of the city, customers must not exceed one person per 2sq m.

"There should be no dancefloors, including in nightclubs, except for weddings," the NSW government states.

"Only the wedding party to a maximum of 20 are permitted (to dance)."

Gatherings in Greater Sydney are also restricted to 30 people outdoors and five visitors, including children, to a home.

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NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian is confident restrictions will be eased in the state this week. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Bianca De Marchi
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian is confident restrictions will be eased in the state this week. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Bianca De Marchi

NSW DECISION COULD BE MADE TOMORROW

Sydneysiders could see restrictions eased as early as Wednesday after NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian hinted at the date last week.

Appearing on 2GB, Ms Berejiklian confirmed restrictions would not be eased in time for Australia Day but instead re-evaluated on January 27.

"We just want to make sure that once you ease restrictions, you don't want another super-seeding event which then has us go backwards again," she said.

"On Wednesday [January 20], we said we'd give it another week and I'm confident that we'll be able to announce something towards the end of next week."

Australia Day on Tuesday marked the ninth consecutive day the state recorded no new locally acquired cases of COVID-19.

Originally published as Wild scenes as crowds pack clubs

The crowd around the stage at Cloudland, Brisbane. Picture: Instagram
The crowd around the stage at Cloudland, Brisbane. Picture: Instagram
The event at Wink Wink. Picture: Instagram
The event at Wink Wink. Picture: Instagram


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