Hundreds of backpackers flocked to Bronte Beach on Christmas Day, ignoring health advice against large gatherings in the Greater Sydney region.
NSW Police were called to the the beach in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs on Friday afternoon where the mass gathering of foreigners was taking place.
Footage from the scene showed a rowdy display of party-goers dressed in festive gear, drinking, chanting for cameras and ignoring coronavirus social distancing rules.
A 25-year-old man was issued a court attendance notice for allegedly not complying with move-on orders.
One witness suspected up to 500 people took part in the impromptu “dance party” until it was broken up by police about 5pm.
“At 5pm it was probably a couple of hundreds or five hundred people, mostly backpackers. They were all on the beach and then as they were moved on by the police I saw a group with a speaker playing music, and they had a bit of a dance party,” the witness told The Australian.
While the revellers took up a large space on the grass at the popular spot, the beach itself was predominantly empty.
Nearby in Paddington, a cluster of coronavirus cases grew on Christmas Day, while the state recorded seven more cases.
A child is expected to be among new cases announced on Boxing Day, after thousands of families on the Northern Beaches were forced into a strict lockdown for Christmas.
NSW Health has issued a new alert flagging that 10 Sydney locations, four buses and a flight to Griffith had been visited by people infected with Covid-19.
Authorities are most concerned about anyone who was at Chicago Jones Coffee & Chocolate Maison in Auburn on Sunday and passengers on the 2.10pm Regional Express flight from Sydney to Griffith on Monday.
There's also growing concern about a potential cluster in the Sydney CBD centred on the Paragon Hotel near Circular Quay, with Santa photos at the QVB one of the locations flagged in the alert.
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