Street Entertainment and Busking

Busking in the Waterfall area at Market Place

We welcome buskers in Derby city centre and in Markeaton Park. A busking licence is free of charge.

Busking is music, dance, street theatre, performance or art offered live on available spaces within the city for the purposes of entertaining, interacting with members of the public, and receiving voluntary contributions.

Busking is welcome on the agreed sites, although a licence is required. However, your performance should be considerate of those around you.

If you wish to entertain/busk in Derby City Centre/Markeaton Park you will need to return a completed electronic application form along with a photograph of yourself. 

King Statue

Voluntary Code of Practice

This Code of Practice sets out the obligations with which Buskers and Street Entertainers in Derby city centre and Markeaton Park are requested to comply. In particular, it is important that Buskers and Street Entertainers should avoid causing annoyance or disturbance by always having consideration for the general public and for the occupiers of premises in the locality of the busking site. Buskers and Street Entertainers must also have regard for the needs and rights of shopkeepers and other business proprietors in the vicinity.

  • Buskers and Street Entertainers are requested to apply to Derby City Council for a Licence. This will need to be emailed to along with a photo image of yourself.
  • The permit must be carried at all times when busking or street-entertaining in Derby. Failure to produce a valid permit will result in entertainers being asked to cease performing.
  • Buskers and Street Entertainers must not stand/sit, or spread out equipment etc. so as to cause an obstruction of the highway (footpath), entrances/exits to shops and other premises, or to shop window displays.
  • Busking is illegal for those under the age of 14. Derby LIVE recommends that buskers between the ages of 14 and 18 are accompanied by a responsible adult.
  • Buskers and Street Entertainers must not actively collect money, but may have a receptacle (e.g. box, hat or musical instrument case) into which members of the public can place donations. The receptacle should not act as an obstruction to passers-by.
  • The selling of any merchandise such as CDs and T-shirts is not permitted with this licence. Any selling of CDs or supporting merchandise will require a Street Trader’s licence. Please contact Derby City Council’s Licensing team on 01332 641930 or 
  • Any collections on behalf of charities must be supported by a Street Collection Permit; please contact Derby City Council’s Licensing team on 01332 641930 or 
  • Circus Skills Entertainers must have public liability insurance with a minimum of at least £5million cover.
  • Amplifiers may only be used at reasonable levels so as not to cause a nuisance and to allow other activities to continue unhindered.
  • Any noisy instrument may be restricted to 60 minutes in any one location on one day, taking into consideration the views of surrounding businesses. Please note: Busking Sites 5 (Corn Market – adjacent to the seating near Primark) and 6 (St Peter’s Street outside HSBC bank) are in such close proximity, return to either of these sites is not permissible on the same day.
  • Any request by the Police, Council officers or representatives of adjacent properties to cease entertaining should be complied with.
  • Buskers and Street Entertainers should not perform in a manner which may be considered dangerous to themselves or to the general public. They should not behave, dress or say/sing anything which is likely to cause alarm, distress or offence to a member of the public.
  • Buskers and Street Entertainers who appear to be under the influence of either drugs or alcohol will not be permitted to continue and will have their permit revoked.
  • Any performance time for any area is limited to a maximum of 2 hours duration on one day.

The Police are aware of this Voluntary Code of Practice and will take appropriate action against any Buskers and Street Entertainers who fail to comply with its requirements.

Derby City Centre Buskers and Street Entertainers Areas

  1. Iron Gate in the open square adjacent to the Cathedral
  2. Sadler Gate near the junction with Iron Gate
  3. Market Place – adjacent to the waterfall
  4. Market Place Exhibition Area
  5. Corn Market – adjacent to the seating near Primark
  6. St Peter’s Street outside HSBC
  7. St Peter’s Street/St Peter’s Churchyard outside the church
  8. The Spot adjacent to Pure Gym
  9. East Street between St Peter’s Street and Exchange Street

Markeaton Park Buskers and Street Entertainers Areas

  1. Mundy Play Centre bridge (over Markeaton Park Stream)
  2. Markeaton Park Craft Village (corner, next to community room)
  3. Markeaton Park main driveway (also known as the Old Parade Ground)

No right to perform is inferred by this code of practice and it does not confer indemnity from the Environmental Protection Act 1990, Noise and Statutory Nuisance Act 1993, Control of Pollution Act 1974 or Highways Act 1980.

For further information please contact: Derby LIVE –