‘Devastating’ hit to restaurants, cafes in Melbourne lockdown postcodes

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Hospitality businesses are bracing themselves for yet another king-hit after the Victorian Government announced this afternoon it will lock down suburbs within 10 postcodes in Melbourne’s north and west.

From 11:59pm, July 1, just one month after the industry slowly re-opened its door after weeks of lockdown, residents of the newly locked-down suburbs will return to only being permitted to leave home for work, providing care, get exercise, or to buy groceries.

Postmistress owner, Patrick Ciccaldo, described the news as ‘devastating” and that his Brunswick West restaurant would be forced to again lay off staff – some with young children – with just one day’s notice.

Mr Ciccaldo said the news came from nowhere and he was alarmed at the lack of consultation from government or clarity about how a delivery or takeaway model would work.

“Can we deliver to Essendon or Brunswick just two blocks away? Where can we deliver to… I could go to Coles in Union Square a couple of blocks away and it will be full of people tomorrow, but what about my restaurant?”

“I’ve got staff who have just come back to work, some working less hours and behind on their rent after the two-month lockdown and now they have to go through it all again? It’s not fair,” he said.

“We understand that COVID is dangerous, but why not lock down the whole state for four weeks? It’s not fair to target like this.”

“We’ll make it work somehow, we always do, but we deserve to know more about how this will all work,” Mr Ciccaldo said.

The 10 postcodes: 3012, 3021, 032, 3038, 3042, 3046, 3047, 3055, 3060 and 3065 will each be locked down again until at least July 29.

Premier Daniels Andrews said in this afternoon’s delayed press conference that there “may be” some further support for businesses forced into lockdown.

Victoria’s Chief Health Officer, Brett Sutton, did not rule out further lockdowns being applied to metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria.

You can support Postmistress by ordering and picking up directly from the restaurant. Their menu can be found here. Call on 03 9381 1585

Matt Mitchell

Matt is GRAM's editor. A journalist for more years than he cares to acknowledge, Matt took over as editor in January 2018. He's worked across magazines, television, newspapers, digital and radio. A master of roasting and a demolisher of wine, he hates the word 'foodie' with a passion. If you've got a story idea, pitch it.