2020 Directors’ Report

2020 Directors’ Report

Keep Streets Live Campaign (KSL) is a small, performer-led campaign organisation which advocates for public spaces which are open to informal offerings of art and music and opposes the criminalisation of street culture. Much of KSL’s work in recent years has centred on challenging the misuse of Public Space Protection Orders (PSPOs) which are being used to criminalise a wide range of everyday activities. We are working alongside other groups like Liberty and the Manifesto Club to seek changes to this legislation. 


KSL grew out of a grassroots movement, and the not-for-profit company limited by guarantee was set up in December 2013 to support the work of the movement. Much of the day to day work of the company is undertaken in an unpaid capacity by professional buskers, supported by a board of volunteer Directors and a small number of other volunteers.


The pandemic dominated much of KSL’s work in 2020. During the year, we publicised the sections of the Coronavirus Act that supported the rights of buskers to continue working. KSL also published guidance for how to remain safe while busking, minimising the risk to both the performer and their audiences. Whenever we heard of councils harassing buskers who were performing safely and legally, we used this guidance as a way of explaining that buskers could continue to work.


Our meetings went online as opposed to in-person, while plans for workshops on busking open to all, similar to that which we ran in Manchester in 2019, were delayed on account of the restrictions in place. The same was true of a planned event to launch the successfully negotiated new guidance for Carlisle. We hope to move forward with more ‘live’ events as they become possible again.


A new page was set up on KSL social media, dedicated entirely to streaming videos of buskers performing online. Donations were encouraged, and this helped to increase the reach of KSL, as well as providing a vital platform for the buskers who got involved.


Other ongoing relationships continued:

  • Liverpool recently published new guidance for busking that avoided introducing any new legislation. KSL represented the interests of buskers throughout and played a key role in developing the guidance, which we feel is a victory for responsible busking.
  • The Westminster campaign picked up pace throughout 2020. Though ultimately unsuccessful in our goal of preventing the new licensing scheme, KSL have been instrumental in bringing together a coalition of street performers who have stood united against the proposals, and continue to fight the licence on the ground. The campaign received a good level of attention in the press, including stories in national publications such as Vice and the Telegraph, with involvement from celebrities such as Eddie Izzard.
  • Peterborough council removed the busking element to their PSPO after pressure from KSL and the local Green Party.
  • Chester Council remain actively engaged with KSL and are keen to put forward guidance that we are happy to put our name to.


KSL have also been involved with the ongoing organisation of concerts at Rainbow Junktion and Left Bank, both organisations with a strong sense of social consciousness and community, which fits nicely with the ethos of KSL.


Our focus in 2021 will be to continue advocating against the introduction of new legislation against buskers; resuming live events and workshops wherever possible; and campaigning against the increase in privately owned pseudo-public spaces as a way of preventing street performers from working.


Directors during 2020:

Weybourne Chester BINGLEY


David Michael Simon GRAY

Rev John Howard WALKER

Sarah Michele WALKER


Keep Streets Live @ Rainbow Junktion

Keep Streets Live @ Rainbow Junktion

Keep Streets Live is proud to announce we will be extending our partnership with Rainbow Junction in 2022 by providing a regular musical backdrop to entertain and lift the spirits of visitors, customers, staff and volunteers at the project in Leeds.

Rainbow Junktion is a Pay-As-You-Feel community café based at All Hallows’ Church, 24 Regent Terrace, Leeds LS6 1NP

We intercept waste food produce to create healthy meals every Monday, Thursday and Friday for whoever walks in the door. Everyone is welcome.

We have 3 course lunch available, plus WIFI, phone charging and basic food shopping.


An eclectic mix of buskers will be performing on the first Monday of each month. All are welcome to come along and enjoy some quality music and some tasty food.  Gigs will also be streamed onto our Keep Streets Live Streams Facebook page for those who are further afield to enjoy.

If you are interested in playing we can make a small payment for expenses and you will be be well fed and watered. Please email contact@keepstreetslive.com to book a slot.

For those who wish to make a donation to support our artists and help to keep the program going please click here

2022 Program

Mon 3rd Jan Jake Keating 

Mon 7th Feb Hayley Gaftarnick

Mon 7th March Hayley Gaftarnick Lightning Hector

Mon 4th April Johnny Campbell

Mon 2nd May Hayley Gaftarnick Ukelele Eric

Mon 6th June Chester

Mon 4th July Sara Kate Michel 

Mon 1st Aug Hayley Gaftarnick 

Mon 5th Sept Chester

Mon 3rd Oct Hayley Gaftarnick

Mon 7th Nov Hayley Gaftarnick

Mon 5th Dec Johnny Campbell





Support your buskers!!

Support your buskers!!

Due to the current Covid crisis and lockdowns buskers are left with little to absolutely zero chance of working and earning money, and are also in a precarious position regarding any government help.

Many have turned to performing and/or raising money online to get them through this difficult period.

Keep Streets Live is endeavouring to support them by sharing links to live streams and crowdfunders, both here and on our new Facebook page Keep Streets Live Streams. We’d also like to extend our support to other buskers who face hardship in one way or another, whether that be ill health, theft or other circumstances.

Please email contact@keepstreetslive.com if you’d like to appear on our page or if you know of anybody who needs support in this way.

Keep Streets Live Patreon page.

Live Music Streams with The Moot and others.

Help touring musicians was set up by Ian Russell of Scorpio Promotions. The aim was to raise money for artists who were stuck in Europe and receiving cancellations as the lockdowns began to take force. A number of buskers are included in the individuals for which money is being raised, and will be contributing music to an album in the near future to promote the fund.

Musicians of Lancaster includes a number of individuals regularly seen on the streets of Lancaster, Morecambe and further afield. The organisers have set up the Sterile Sessions online where performers can livestream.

Busking Beyond Borders. A book about busking and traveling by David Fisher. David has busked in approximately 50 countries including every country in the EU.

Matt Tomlinson had his bagpipes stolen and now cannot busk due to the lockdown in Scotland.That’s a slightly unfortunate double-whammy!