Reclaiming the streets

Signs from Saturday’s Reclaim the Streets rally have been donated to the Library, a record of public reaction to Sydney’s controversial lockout laws. Thousands marched from Town Hall to Star City Casino, dancing in the streets to music provided by nearly a dozen mobile DJs and sound systems.

Lockout laws were applied to Sydney’s entertainment district in 2014, preventing pubs and nightclubs from admitting patrons after 1.30 am. Supporters of the measure argue that alcohol-related violence has decreased, while critics blame the lockout for hurting Sydney’s vibrant nightlife economy. They have also criticised the government for exempting Star City Casino from the lockout zones.

In addition to protest signs and badges, the Library has been collecting conversations about this movement on social media, capturing hashtags such as #keepsydneyopen and #reclaimthestreets.

These new acquisitions will be added to the Library’s extensive political ephemera collections, a snapshot of public commentary about life and events in New South Wales. These collections span the decades and contain material such as how to vote cards, election posters, and Twitter conversations.

If you have material to donate, or if you would like to suggest a hashtag for us to follow, please contact the Library.

Reclaim posters