Business community members have voiced their frustration after the Port Macquarie-Hastings received stay-at-home orders with three hours notice.
Stay-at-home orders for the Port Macquarie and Muswellbrook Local Government Areas (LGAs) will be introduced from 6pm today (September 28) for seven days due to an increased COVID-19 public health risk.
These stay-at-home orders will also apply to anyone who has been in the Port Macquarie and Muswellbrook LGAs since September 17 and September 22 respectively.
The community was notified of the lockdown at 3pm on Tuesday, September 28, three hours before it's due to start at 6pm.
Business NSW Mid North Coast regional manager Kellon Beard said it's disappointing Port Macquarie businesses were given just hours to prepare.
"It's very hard for businesses to continually readjust, particularly those in hospitality," Mr Beard said.
However, Mr Beard said he believes the lockdown won't be extended past seven days, given the high rate of vaccinations in Port Macquarie and more widely on the Mid North Coast.
Flower Hotels owner Alistair Flower runs many of the pubs and eateries in the region, including Settlers Inn in Port Macquarie, Hastings Hotel at Wauchope and Little Shack Kiosk in Port Macquarie.
Mr Flower said it's not as easy as just shutting the doors when preparing for a lockdown period.
"We've got four kitchens, with staff to manage and night bookings to reorganise," he said.
The lockdown also comes at a time when hospitality would normally be busy, given it's school holidays and a long weekend is approaching.
"It's a really disappointing result," Mr Flower said.
The Mid North Coast was one swathe of the state to emerge from stay-at-home orders under relaxed restrictions on Saturday, September 11.
Prior to today's lockdown announcement, Mr Flower said he was optimistically excited about the NSW roadmap of lockdown and tourism coming back.
"It's certainly frustrating as we've been doing such a great job over a long period of time," he said.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: