Coronavirus: New Zealanders react to alert level 3 lockdown announcement

New Zealanders have taken to social media to share messages of hope and support for Aucklanders who will enter alert level 3 lockdown from midnight on Saturday.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Director General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced the alert level change on Saturday evening.

It comes after the Ministry of Health revealed there is a new case of COVID-19 in the community which has no confirmed chain of infection.

They are the older sibling of a Papatoetoe High School student who is a casual-plus contact, however that student has not tested positive for COVID-19.

Some Aucklanders have shared their frustration with the new lockdown, which comes less than two weeks after Auckland was last in alert level 3.

"Sigh. Auckland is locked down for a week. It's not gonna be easy," one person wrote.

However Kiwis have shared messages of support to social media.

"Oh Auckland - really feeling for you. Going in and out of L3 is rough," one person said.

"Thinking of you, Auckland," another wrote.

"We're with you Auckland - keep cool, be staunch, support one another. We got this."

One user said: "Come on Auckland, we can do it again!"

Due to the lockdown, several events which were due to take place in Auckland are likely to be cancelled, including Auckland fun run Round the Bays and sports games.

"So no @BLACKCAPS vs Australia in Auckland on Friday then. Booooooooooooooooo," one person wrote.

However, others have mentioned that other towns around New Zealand would be happy to move the events there.

"I've only just heard about the move to L3. If we can't get back to Auckland, I know a great little town called Blenheim that would love to host the Blues."

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff admitted the lockdown was "very frustrating" but assured it was the best thing for the city.

"This is not what we want but the best chance to knocking COVID out of our communities," he tweeted.

"Please stay HOME if you are unwell or are waiting for your test results. This new variant is very transmissible and this is not the time to be slack about following the rules."