Prime Minister Scott Morrison just gave us some news to cheer about. Indoor gathering restrictions on 100 people will be scrapped next month, giving the green light for restaurants and venues to get up and running. Outdoor events will also be able to host up to 10,000 spectators.
There is a catch, as always. Venue capacity will be determined by a four square metre per person rule, in order to maintain social distancing. All authorised events will also have to be ticketed, and seated. This includes festivals.
As pandemic restrictions ease, ScoMo has announced that gatherings of over 100 people are allowed under certain protocols. This means that you can go to a festival, but you’ll be seated, and safe in your four square metre, socially distanced bubble.
This change comes as stage three restrictions slowly easy around the country. The four square metres rule was initially introduced back in March, however was quickly removed as the pandemic spread. The PM has also noted that these changes do not allow nightclubs or venues with a capacity of over 40,000 to reopen.
“We’ve seen overseas, nightclubs is one area of failures,” Morrison explained in a press conference.
There’s still a lot to keep us all busy though until we can get back into the club. In the last week, Queensland venues have slowly started to reopen, with The Zoo and The Triffid already announcing a socially distanced gig schedule. Venues in New South Wales such as The Vanguard have also been dipping their toes back into live music, putting on gigs for smaller audiences that comply with all current restrictions.
The NSW Government and ARIA have also announced their Great Southern Nights gig series, aimed to bring much needed revenue back into the arts. The series will kick off from November featuring the talents of Jimmy Barnes and Tones and I.
An exact date for these national changes has yet to be released. It also bears mentioning that Morrison, soon to be ok with 10,000 people gathering outdoors, has spoken in favour of charging anyone who participates in ongoing Black Lives Matter protests around Australia.