Sydney’s COVID-19 restrictions will be loosened over Christmas as NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announces tweaks to restrictions for the Northern Beaches

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – DECEMBER 22: A man walks past a coronavirus (COVID-19) precautionary sign at Bondi Beach, near the site of a COVID-19 drive-through testing clinic, in Sydney, Australia, on December 22, 2020. Sydneys northern beaches are in lockdown as a COVID-19 cluster continues to grow with fears it will spread into other parts of Australias largest city. (Photo by Steven Saphore/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
  • NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has announced a moderate loosening of Sydney’s COVID-19 restrictions between Christmas Eve and Boxing Day.
  • The new restrictions preclude children from counting towards a 10 person limit for gatherings in Sydney, allowing visitors in to some parts of the northern beaches, and allowing intra-house visits of up to five people for those in the worst hit part of the area.
  • The state recorded just eight new COVID-19 cases yesterday with nearly 42,000 tests undertaken.
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Some would call it a Christmas miracle, others say it’s the results of a statewide effort. Either way, Sydney’s northern beaches residents will likely welcome tweaks to COVID-19 lockdown over Christmas.

On Wednesday morning, the NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced “modest changes” to public health restrictions after the state recorded just 8 locally acquired cases yesterday.

Greater Sydney residents can have 10 adults and children under twelve in their home on the 24th, 25th and 26th of December. There are no changes to those in regional NSW.

Noting that the COVID-19 outbreak is limited to just part of the area, the northern beaches — which is currently under lockdown — will be split up in two sections along the Narrabean Bridge.

Those in the northern part of the northern beaches remain in lockdown, but will be allowed to have five people from that area in their home over between the 24th and the 26th of December.

Residents of the southern part of the northern beaches still can’t leave that area, but are allowed up to 10 people from across Greater Sydney from Christmas Eve to Boxing Day.

These restrictions will revert to their pre-Christmas Eve levels, except for the splitting of the northern beaches region.

Of the eight cases, seven of those were linked to the Avalon cluster, and one was a healthcare worker who tested posted. Nearly 42,000 people were tested for COVID yesterday.

The Premier thanked the state’s residents for their willingness to comply with restrictions.

“We’re deeply grateful that people not only are listening to the restrictions in place, not only adhering to the advice we’re providing but also coming out in droves to get tested and that’s exactly what we need during the course of the next few days and next few weeks,” she said.