Buskers could be given two hour time limit in Northampton town centre proposals
Town centre buskers could be given a two-hour time limit to show off their musical talent as Northampton Borough Council considers placing restrictions on them in the town centre.
A number of street performers currently set up on Abington Street and near the Guildhall, but the borough council is going to ask for residents’ views on introducing the time limit, and also on ‘non-busking’ parts of the day.
The consultation comes as part of a regular update of the council’s Public Space Protection Orders (PSPOs), and was approved by the authority’s cabinet on Wednesday (October 16).
One member of the public gallery advised councillors to ‘keep the ones who can play in tune’, but cabinet member for community engagement and safety Councillor Anna King said: “It’s vital that we get consultation underway on this as the current policies expire on March 31.”
The proposals have been put forward as the authority has had a number of complaints from residents about the volume of some performers.
A council report seen by the cabinet states: “Busking can add to the good feel of the town. The PSPO proposed consultation will ask businesses, residents and users of the town centre whether they think the council ought to have powers to manage buskers more effectively so that they do not stay in one place for too long, with a suggested time of two hours.
“The consultation will also seek views on allowing a non-busking period on a particular day/time (yet to be determined) to allow Northampton to become an autism-friendly town. The general public will also be asked to consider the use of amplifiers by buskers following complaints.”