Hull is proud of its long tradition in street entertainment which provides colour, interest and vibrancy to its city centre streets. The city plays host to an all year round programme of events and attracts a diverse range of street entertainers from around the world.
A licence is not required to busk in Hull.
Choosing your pitch
Certain areas of the city are more appropriate than others for busking, while some streets have by-laws in place which prohibit busking altogether.
Buskers are encouraged to use the city’s larger areas, in particular –
- Paragon interchange
- Jameson street / King Edward street corner
- Queen Victoria square
- Whitefriargate (Beverley gate)
- Parliament street
- Trinity square
- The bandstand in Queens Gardens
- Chapel lane Staith
Some of these areas often host visiting markets and other events. If an event has been/is being set up in the area that you hope to perform, buskers must obtain permission from the event organiser before setting up.
When choosing your pitch, please ensure you do not -
- obstruct the flow of pedestrians, including -
- wheelchair users
- leave objects on the footpath which may cause people to trip
You should also be mindful of the possibility of occasional moving vehicles in the area, being careful not to build up your audience in a position where they may come into conflict with traffic.
The use of amplifiers and backing tracks are only acceptable in Queen Victoria Square and the bandstand in Queens Gardens.
Amplifiers must not be used in any other areas. In consideration of nearby businesses, we ask buskers who use amplification not to perform on more than one occasion between Monday and Friday.
We ask users of amplification to remember that they are performing in a working city and to set their volume at a reasonable level.
As a variety of factors can affect sound levels, it is difficult to provide a ‘set decibel’ for buskers to follow and we ask buskers to exercise common sense to avoid disturbance to neighbours.
Safety and risk management
We advise all buskers to think about public safety when planning and setting up their act.
We cannot be held liable for the activities of buskers and we advise all buskers to carry public liability insurance (PLI).
Conditions of busking
- try and co-ordinate and co-operate with other buskers
- try to use recognised busking zones
- be considerate to neighbours when setting your volume
- vary your pitch from day to day
- move location after 2 hours
- stop busking if requested to do so by anyone who is
- inconvenienced or disturbed by what you are doing
- council officer
- turn off any microphones if you are approached by
- council officer
- set your pitch within 50 metres of another busker
- perform more than two hours in the same location
- spread out equipment or other items so as to obstruct the flow of pedestrians
- busk near
- telephone boxes
- perform on Sunday before midday
- busk in an area where an event is already taking place without obtaining the event organisers permission
- actively solicit contributions. This is begging and you could be arrested/prosecuted
- put pressure on another busker in your area
- act or speak aggressively to people exercising their right to ask you to stop
- reserve a pitch in advance of your performance by setting equipment down prior
- perform under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- behave in a manner causing or likely to cause a breach of peace
- busk near a pedestrian crossing
Advice for the public
If you find that you are being distracted by a street performer approach the busker and explain politely that you are being troubled by their activity. You may find this difficult but often buskers are unaware of the problem they are causing and will be happy to do what they can to find a compromise.
If the problem persists or you are unable to reach a compromise with the performer please complete the below form and this will be investigated by our noise nuisance team.