It’s been bubbling for years now, but Sydney’s anti-lockouts movement is finally kicking into high gear. This Sunday, 21st February, Keep Sydney Open will hold a rally at Belmore Park near Sydney’s Central Station to protest the city’s controversial late-night lockout laws.

The rally will gather at Belmore Park before making its way into the CBD just after 1pm with a stop along the way at Bar Century, which is set to close doors soon, to conduct a mock funeral for all of the venues, small businesses, and jobs that have been lost thanks to the lockouts.

The rally will include speeches and performances from a number of music industry notables, including The Preatures frontwoman Isabella Manfredi, who will be speaking alongside Hoodoo Gurus’ Dave Faulkner, Crikey‘s Bernard Keane, and KSO’s Tyson Koh, who will MC the event.

There will also be musical performances from Art vs Science, who recently took to Facebook to re-share their biting anti-lockouts anthem ‘You’ve Got To Stop’, and Sydney-bred punk rockers Royal Headache, who just concluded a run on the Laneway Festival circuit.

More speakers are set to be announced during the week and there will be KSO T-shirts on sale at Belmore Park before the rally gets underway. KSO are encouraging marchers to hit up some of the cultural events happening in Sydney that day afterwards, like the Mardi Gras Fair Day in Victoria Park.

The rally is inspired by live music advocacy group Save Live Australia’s Music’s 2010 march on Victoria’s Parliament House in response to Melbourne’s unpopular lockout laws. The 17,000-strong turnout in an election year was instrumental in removing the city’s lockouts.

Among KSO’s demands, they would like to see lockout exemptions for licensed premises that are predominantly live music venues, an end to the new licence freeze for predominantly live music venues and small bars, and the lifting of restrictions on retail hours.

Keep Sydney Open Rally

Sunday, 21st February (12.30pm)
Belmore Park, Sydney
Details: Keep Sydney Open

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