Production of Australia's beloved soap Home & Away is stopped amid COVID-19 outbreak

The residents of Summer Bay are staying indoors.

By Jess Pullar
Production for one of Australia's most iconic soaps has now been halted in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As one of the country's longest-running drama series, Home and Away has gripped our nation, and a number of other countries across the world for more than 30 years.
But in an historic move, production company Seven Network has temporarily halted the production as the world reacts to the Coronavirus pandemic, which has essentially stopped large social interactions, a feat which is vital for the show's success.
On Sunday evening, a Seven spokesperson said: "Seven Studios advised today that it would halt filming of Home and Away immediately.
The spokesperson confirmed that no cast or crew had tested positive to COVID-19, however the decision was made as "logistical hurdles" increased.
In further unprecedented changes, the show today announced it would no longer be airing. The beloved soap is instead making way for increased coverage of the coronavirus pandemic, promising to return soon. But, when exactly that will be remains unknown.
"Home And Away will be off air from tonight while 7NEWS keeps the nation informed with The Latest, nightly at 7pm," a post on the official Instagram page confirmed.

Fans quickly shared their anguish and disappointment over the show's removal.
"People watch TV shows to escape from reality and want a break from coronavirus news," one user wrote.
"We hear about it all day and night, we need Home And Away to escape," another commented.
The decision comes after the cast and crew were revealed to be rehearsing lines together whilst socially isolating themselves.
But how did they do it, you ask? Of course by our newly frequented social norm - a Skype session.
Production of Australia's iconic soap Home and Away has been halted due to the Coronavirus. (Getty)
On Friday, Emily Symons, who plays Marilyn on the show, shared a screen grab of a seven-way video call with some of her crew and cast members, including Lukas Radovich, Georgie Parker and Cameron Daddo.
The actress wrote: "Our first ever virtual rehearsal! So happy to see my friends this morning."
Emily Symons shared this candid snap of the cast and crew having a virtual rehearsal. (Instagram)
Meanwhile, fellow co-star Penny McNamee also shared a snap of the new routine rehearsal, with Sam Frost, Lynne McGranger, Ada Nicodemou and James Stewart pictured in the snap.
"First time for everything - rehearsals online with these legends today, special shout out to @fro01 who took advantage and stayed in her jim-jams!" Penny wrote.
She was, of course referencing the fact that Sam Frost had done what many of us are shamelessly embracing while working from home - pyjama life.
Penny McNamee did the same thing - and noted Sam Frost's top choice in attire! (Instagram)
Home and Away certainly isn't the only show to be halting production amid the COVID-19 health crisis.
It was also revealed by Endemol Shine that the new revamped series of Big Brother is also in lockdown after potential exposure to the virus.
A spokesperson for the company stated: "We have been made aware that a Big Brother crew member has been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19."
They continued: "The crew member is currently feeling well and showing no symptoms of the virus, however, is being tested and is now self-isolating."
The entire site is currently in lockdown as testing continues.
WATCH: Sonia Kruger talks about how they broke the news of the Coronavirus to the Big Brother housemates. Story continues...
Another famous Aussie soap to be caught up in the health pandemic is Neighbours, which is filmed in Melbourne.
The production was stopped last week when a person working on the show had come into contact with someone who tested positive for Covid-19.

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