London: Concern at Christmas

London: Concern at Christmas

Buskers in London this Christmas are facing an uncertain future with continuing crackdowns on licences, closure of pitches, bans on amplification, and seizures of CD’s and equipment.

If proposed restrictions in Westminster go ahead there will be virtually no viable and publicly accessible locations for performers almost anywhere across central London, with an area from Hammersmith & Fulham across to Tower Hamlets and up to Camden effectively off-limits.

In an effort to combat this, Westminster Street Performer Association have held meetings to encourage more efficient self-regulation and show that it is the Council’s inaction and inability to deal with issues that is causing friction in popular busking locations such as Leicester and Trafalgar Squares. They can be contacted at LondonWSPA@gmail.com

Keep Streets Live has been looking a developing a City-wide strategy towards street performance, recognising that whatever happens in one place has a knock-on effect in others. Busking bans in Shepherds Bush for example several years ago pushed performers into Kensington causing over saturation and complaints, leading to similar bans in RBKC. We are now seeing many of those buskers pushed into the already busy pitches in the West End. Inevitably reducing available space increases pressure and conflict for both buskers and other stakeholders.

“I feel here we now have the bones of a London-wide grassroots performers group, which will be able to take a more co-ordinated and holistic approach to busking across the capital rather than seeing pitches and issues in isolation. If this is something which you’d like to be part of please check out the Keep Streets Live in London Facebook group.”-Chester Bingley (Director)

Our petition against the busking bans in Kensington has now attracted around 2,000 signatures so please Sign Here

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