Thousands of anti-lockdown protesters have marched through the middle of Sydney today, demanding their freedom as the city marks the end of its fourth week in lockdown with a record number of new infections.

Protesters gathered in Victoria Park before marching down Broadway and George Street to Town Hall chanting: “What do we want; freedom, when do we want it; now.”

A record 163 new infections were announced in the 24 hours to 8:00pm on Friday, the highest daily increase since the current Delta outbreak began last month.

Police clashed with protesters and made several arrests but were unable to stop the march estimated at several-thousand.

NSW Police received an application for the protest, which was rejected under current public health orders.

The protest was part of the international Worldwide Rally for Freedom, protesting COVID-19 restrictions. Similar protests took place in Brisbane and Melbourne.

Concerns have been raised that the protest will lead to increased transmission as the NSW COVID-19 crisis deteriorates further.

Main photo of police arresting lockdown protesters in Victoria Park, Chippendale, by Aston Brown.