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POLL: Have your say on Newcastle’s lock out laws

Newcastle Live -

Lifestyle Opinion

Are you sick of the vocal minority telling us what needs to happen in Newcastle?

We sure are. Here’s your chance to tell us what you think about Newcastle night life…

CLICK HERE TO HAVE YOUR SAY

Something happened in our city recently.

As hundreds of thousands descended upon Newcastle for the Newcastle 500 and cameras captured our City from every angle, in lounge rooms everywhere a single sentence was uttered over and over again; ‘I can’t believe that’s really Newcastle!’

Admit it, if you watched the race on TV you said it. We did and we’ve lived here a long time.

And while it was wonderful to know that Newcastle, in all its glory, was beamed out around the world, something even more important happened.

We saw it. Us. The locals.

For three glorious days we were reminded of what we have and where we live.

So often have we been forced to listen to the vocal minority that they almost succeeded in making us believe our City was not a City at all, but a quiet suburban town where noise after 8pm should be banned and we should tip-toe to our cars after dinner because ‘we don’t want to annoy the neighbours’ on our way home.

But thanks to the Supercars event the word is out. Newcastle is a beautiful, amazing, awe-inspiring City and one that should be open to the public – even after the sun goes down. We have an international airport and are home to multi-million-dollar international companies. We are in the midst of a construction boom, have half a million residents and are leading the way in coastal tourism.

But for almost a decade when it comes to our night-time economy, we have been forced to crouch and bow our heads under the banner of the ‘Newcastle Solution’.

Well enough is enough. We have grown… And we have changed.

In 2008, restrictions were put into place that told us when we went out we had to be inside a venue by 1am and that we couldn’t always order the drinks we wanted. We were told that we had messed up and as a result, certain freedoms would be taken away. We were told to sit in the corner and think about what we’d done.

Almost a decade has passed and since then we have all done a lot of thinking. Don’t believe us? The Supercars event was by far the largest scale event to ever occur in Newcastle. 190,000 people enjoying our city… and zero incidents at any licensed venue. None.

We are a beautiful city. The second largest in NSW and the seventh biggest in the country. We are a growing economy and a leader in Defence, coal and tourism.

And it’s time to let us out of the naughty corner.

The Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority is currently reviewing restrictions placed upon us in 2008 and the Australian Hotels Association (AHA) has not requested current lock out laws be removed, but conditions be refined so that we as a city have the same rules as Sydney. Should the AHA’s suggestions be implemented we could order the drinks we want, and a uniform time – either 1am or 1.30am, would be the curfew for all venues with lock outs.

It’s a small step. Our first out of the corner.

It’s also a chance to start proving that we no longer need to be the national example of a city being ‘managed’, but of a city that has experienced reform and progression. A city that has come of age.

The voices from the soap box might be loud, but they need not define us. We’ve heard what they have to say and we have something to say back.

We are an incredible city of amazing people. Together we have achieved incredible success and built our home into a place to be proud of.

It’s time to start moving forward Newcastle. Our nine year ‘time out’ has been long enough. Let’s take the next step forward – together.

CLICK HERE TO HAVE YOUR SAY

 

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Comments 1

  1. 1. Zero incidents may be the cirect result of the current rules.
    2. Your survey is designed to obtain the result you want. Many people would not have the information to respond in an informed manner. Opinions are only valuable when yhey are informed.

    I am not opposed to the situation being reviewed. Unfortunately your survey is too clumsy for me to submit a response. Personally, I would love people to have the freedom to enjoy a late night out, with or without alcohol. Live music is great, too.
    I hope you are correct, that people are more mature and responsible than they were, but I suspect there is much more involved than you have raised. In Europe people do seem to be able to have a drink or two without feeling the need to continue until they have lost all self control. In Australia, not just Newcastle, there are those who think the only way to drink is to binge. They continue to make public safety a significant issue here.

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