Street performance - or busking - involves performing publicly in the hope of receiving money from an audience. 

Busking is legal in the UK although children under the age of 14 are not permitted to busk. 

Like everyone else, buskers are subject to the requirements of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 and if there are complaints about noise from a busker, enforcement action may be taken.  

Buskers must get permission before busking on private property such as a bus or railway station.    

Buskers collecting on behalf of a charity need to apply for a street collection licence.  

Performing copyright music 

Buskers must hold a Performing Rights Society (PRS) music licence in order to lawfully play copyright music in public.  

The licence gives legal permission to play copyright music for prolonged periods of time.

Failure or refusal to obtain a PRS licence may lead the copyright owner to take civil action for copyright infringement in the courts.   

Complaints about busking

The council has a has a statutory duty under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 to investigate complaints about loudspeakers in the street.  

Section 62 of the Control of Pollution Act 1974 enables council officers to take formal action where loudspeakers are being used in the street for the purpose of advertising entertainment, trades or business. 

Anyone found to have contravened the requirements of Section 62 can be prosecuted without prior written notice and may be liable to a fine on conviction at a magistrates court.  

If a statutory noise nuisance is confirmed council officers may issue an abatement notice.

Read how we deal with complaints about noise