Sydney’s Inner West bars to trial lockout laws

28 August, 2015 by
Aoife Boothroyd

Ten venues in Sydney’s Inner West have signed up to a voluntary six month lockout law trial.

The trial, which will commence on 1 September will see new patrons locked out of bars from 3am on Friday and Saturdays nights. Patrons who have entered before 3am will require a pass out should they wish to re-enter the premises.

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The trail will also see a ban on shots and doubles after midnight, and the sale of alcohol will be stopped 30 minutes prior to closing.

The trial covers almost all of the popular late night trading venues in the area including the Marlborough Hotel, Zanzibar and The Bank. The only late night venue that declined to join the trial is Enmore’s Sly Fox.

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Speaking with Fairfax, chairman of the Newtown Liquor Accord, Tim Claydon said that the trial is designed to curb alcohol related violence by deterring party-goers from heading to the area after the inner-city lockout laws kick in. The inner city lockout laws apply to venues in Kings Cross, Darlinghurst, The Rocks and Darling Harbour and prevent patrons from entering a venue for the first time after 1.30am, and prevent the sale of alcohol after 3am.

"Don't even think of heading to Newtown at 3am after a night out in the city, as you simply won't get into venues."

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The laws were rushed through parliament and introduced in February 2014 following the death of Sydney teenager, Daniel Christie.

Speaking with Fairfax, Liberal Democrat senator David Leyonhjelm says that the laws did not consider a number of key facts and consequences. While there has been a significant reduction in crime within the lockout zone, Leyonhjelm says that crime rates in surrounding suburbs have increased significantly.

According to NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics, the inner west suburb of Newtown has recorded an 18 percent increase in violent alcohol-related crime since the laws were introduced. Other neighbouring suburbs including Petersham and Glebe have also experienced an increase in alcohol-related incidences.