‘Sydney’s NYE fireworks should go ahead’: Forster

The opening sequence of Sydney's 2006 NYE fireworks. Photo: Rob Chandler/Creative Commons 2.0.

City of Sydney Councillor Christine Forster has added her voice to the growing calls for Sydney’s New Year’s Eve celebrations to go ahead despite Covid-19.

Forster today backed NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, who said the state government was willing to foot the bill, to give people a sign of hope after a difficult 2020. 

“We’re keen to see [the fireworks] go ahead in one form or another,” the Premier told 2GB’s Ben Fordham.

“It won’t be the same as every other year, most of us, the vast majority of us, will be watching from home,” she said.

Forster singled out Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore for indicating that the popular event might be cancelled this year, and said the people of Sydney could be trusted to navigate NYE safely.

“Throughout the pandemic, the people of Sydney and New South Wales have demonstrated their willingness to act responsibly and cooperatively with police, government and health officials,” Forster wrote in a social media post.

“This has ensured broad compliance with public health and safety orders and supported the state’s successful management of the pandemic.  

“It also means a scaled down, well controlled New Year’s Eve event can and should go ahead under the careful joint management of Council and the State Government.”

Forster said it was important that Sydney sent out the “right” message.

“City of Sydney Council should show faith in the people of this city to keep doing the right thing and support an event that could be a defining moment on our road to recovery.”

In August, the Lord Mayor said it “may not be responsible” to go ahead with the NYE fireworks display at the end of the year.

“It would be incredibly sad if Sydney New Year’s Eve cannot go ahead, but that is a real possibility we’re facing,” said Moore.

The debate echoes similar discussions around whether it was appropriate to go ahead with last year’s NYE fireworks display. 

There were doubts the 2019 fireworks would go ahead amidst the 2019-20 bushfire crisis – but the event ultimately proceeded.

Sydney’s 2019 NYE fireworks. Video: ABC TV & iview/YouTube.

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