Revellers queue for pubs at midnight as Sydney reopens after 107 days of Covid lockdown

·1-min read

People queued for pubs at midnight as Sydney emerged from a Covid lockdown after nearly four months.

Celebrations were rife as people headed out to the shops which opened at midnight on Monday to mark the end of lockdown.

The Lord Gladstone Hotel was among the pubs reaping the rewards of the new freedoms in Australia’s biggest city.

Pub’s licensee Pat Blake told the BBC: “We’re stoked to be back, we’re having the best Monday in months, even before Covid.

“People are just ready to come back and sit down for a schooie [beer], see their friends, be somewhere there’s always music playing.

“The kitchen is pumping. I had forgotten about the pub smells. As soon as the fryers turned on it was really nostalgic.”

Sydney was plunged into lockdown in late June when a Delta variant outbreak hit the capital.

It led to 50,000 new infections and 439 deaths.

Lockdown was lifted after the successful vaccine rollout hit the 70% double jabbed target in New South Wales (NSW).

The majority of Covid restrictions have been lifted as Sydney reopened; people can return to the gym, libraries and pools as well as eating out at restaurants and cafes with friends and family.

As well as pubs and shops, people were queuing first thing to get a bit of pampering at nail salons and the hairdressers.

Families had been separated when travel was banned beyond 3.1 miles.

State Premier Dominic Perrottet said: “It’s been a difficult 100 days.

“But the efforts that people have made right across the state, to go out and get vaccinated, has enabled this great day.”

Canberra will be released from lockdown on Friday.

Melbourne is expected to follow in late October.

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