Pictured at Camden Lock, a popular busking pitch, are: Chief Inspector of Operations Penny Mills, Councillor Chris Naylor, Camden Town resident Judith Clute, Cllr Abdul Hai, Cllr Maryam Eslamdoust and Lazzaro Pietragnoli
Published: 25 April, 2013
by PAVAN AMARA
IT may be a part of the capital famous for live music but the Town Hall is ready to clamp down on buskers in Camden Town.
Authorities toured the area on Monday in response to complaints that noise levels and disturbances have got out of hand. Residents in flats in Camden High Street and Inverness Street say the music goes on into the night.
Labour councillor Lazzaro Pietragnoli, who was part of Monday’s “walkabout”, said: “We had to see the problems for ourselves.
"In the short-term we will be reinforcing existing laws, for example when a busker obstructs passage we can legally move them.
“In the long-term we are changing policies and opting for a strict new one, meaning very specific powers to deal with busking. It will involve designated areas for them, and will not allow amps or more than one person at a time. So instead of bands we’ll see the return of traditional busking musicians.”
Lib Dem councillor Chris Naylor said plans to rebuild Camden Town tube station could incorporate a dedicated space for busking using the station’s entrances and exits.
He added: “There were plans to build a huge shiny shopping centre all the way from HSBC bank to Buck Street which would have knocked down the church and Camden Market.
“Now, we don’t want to do that in as big a way, but a smaller scale version is being talked about. That would mean this whole area would be changing anyway, and within that we could discuss options.”
Chief Inspector of Operations Penny Mills added Safer Neighbourhoods Teams could check up on the situation throughout the night.
She said: “At the moment they don’t work at night, but June’s new policing model could change that.”