Young British tourist slams ‘jealous’ Aussies who ripped into backpackers for partying on the rooftop of a Sydney hostel – and reveals why they were up there in the first place
- British backpacker jumped to defence of travellers flouting social distance rules
- Police officers were filmed breaking up a party on the rooftop of a Sydney hostel
- Backpacker Peter Leggatt said those criticising group were ‘jealous’ of their fun
- ‘Anyone who has ever stayed in a hostel would understand that,’ backpacker said
- He also hit out at those criticising tourists in Bondi for not following the rules
- ‘Let’s ignore all that and blame us solely for the outbreak,’ he wrote sarcastically
- Bondi has emerged as one of the major hotspots for the virus outbreak in NSW
A British backpacker in Australia has fiercely defended travellers spotted flouting social distancing measures by holding a rooftop party at a Sydney hostel – and claim those criticising them were just jealous.
Police were filmed breaking up the gathering in Kings Cross on Tuesday night – giving the group a warning despite authorities in New South Wales having the power to issues fines of up to $11,000 for breaking social distancing rules. The backpackers living there argued they were all residents of the centre, so there was no problem holding the party there.
Backpacker Peter Leggatt said those criticising the group for holding the party were simply ‘jealous’ of the fun they were having.
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British backpacker Peter Leggatt (pictured) has defended travellers who were spotted holding a rooftop party of a Sydney hostel despite strict social distancing measures being in place
‘That hostel that had the party can’t social distance,’ he wrote in a post on a Facebook page for Australian backpackers.
‘Anyone who has ever stayed in a hostel or has the tiniest brain power would understand that.
‘The problem seems they dared to have fun in a time when everyone else cant. Sounds like jealousy to me.’
The backpacker also hit out at those who have criticised tourists in Bondi in Sydney’s eastern suburbs for not following the government’s social distancing guidelines.
Bondi Beach was closed more than a week ago after thousands of people flocked to the iconic spot despite warnings to stay home during the pandemic.
In a sarcastic post, Mr Leggatt wrote: ‘It’s irrelevant we’re stranded here, a lot of us without family or even friends, a huge chunk now out of work, and even more of us having flights home repeatedly cancelled leaving us with no funds and no way out.
Police were called to a hostel in Kings Cross to break up this rooftop social gathering, where revellers were visibly flouting social distancing rules
‘But let’s ignore all that, and blame us solely for the outbreak in Bondi (because apparently it was only backpackers there).’
He also asked for people to be kinder to backpackers trapped in Australia during the pandemic who have had their flights cancelled or are facing homelessness.
Backpackers have been singled out in the police blitz after a virus cluster emerged in the city’s eastern suburbs, a hotspot for young travellers staying in cramped hostels.
Young people kick a soccer ball while other sunbathe on the grass at Sydney’s Bondi Beach on Tuesday
Figures released last week identified Waverley Council, which covers Bondi, as having the most confirmed coronavirus cases in New South Wales.
The footage of police breaking up the party on Tuesday night shows a group of 11 revellers surrounded by cans and glass bottles, clearly defying the 1.5metre distancing and two-person gathering rules.
NSW Police confirmed officers attended the hostel at about 7.15pm in response to a ‘noise complaint’.
The group of backpackers claimed they were all residents of the hostel and therefore weren’t technically breaking any social distancing rules by hanging out together.
Coronavirus cases in Australia have hit 4,832
Police were seen in the footage moving through the hostel before breaking up the social gathering.
‘Police spoke to and reminded to management and guests of the social distancing obligations in accordance with ministerial directions under Public Health Act,’ a spokeswoman told Daily Mail Australia.
‘No further action was taken.’
Earlier on Tuesday, police were out in force at Greenhills Beach at Cronulla, Sydney’s south, where fitness fanatics using off-limits outdoor gym equipment were issued with warnings.
In the city’s east, crowds of sunbathers were told to move on at Bondi while at Rushcutters Bay Park five police cars were used to disperse crowds.
The officers did not leave their cars while telling groups sitting on the grass they were violating the new public health restrictions.
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