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The City of Holdfast Bay values the diversity and entertainment that buskers and street performers bring to public space and encourage busking as it contributes to a vibrant, interactive and creative environment.

To offer musicians and performers appropriate spaces to busk within the city, we have allocated designated busking spots at various locations at Glenelg, Somerton Park, Brighton and Seacliff.

All buskers within Holdfast Bay must hold a current permit to perform. These permits are issued by council and we encourage buskers and street performers to apply online.

The Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) below will assist buskers and street performers, businesses and residents to understand the guidelines and rules around busking and performances in Holdfast Bay.


What is busking?

Busking is a form of public entertainment, which provides opportunity for interaction and creates a lively street culture in public spaces. Busking is the art of performance that provides entertainment in public places, for donations.

Types of busking may include:

  • Performing with an instrument or instruments.
  • Performance of a dance routine.
  • Juggling, clowning, puppetry, magic or mime.
  • Comedy, spoken word or poetry.
  • Actively working in an artistic medium (excluding aerosol art).
What is not considered busking?

Any activity or demonstration involving the sale or exchange of merchandise, products and services is not busking.

The below activities are NOT considered busking:

  • Vendors of any kind – including flowers, jewellery, food and other merchandise.
  • Performances that involve animals.
  • Touting or spruiking including street preaching.
  • Political rallying.
  • Tarot card reading, palmistry and fortune telling.
  • Face or body painting including henna and temporary tattoo application.
  • Begging or requesting money.
  • Massage treatments or any physical manipulation.
  • Artists selling pre-fabricated works, artists must be activity creating the work as part of the performance.
Do I need permission to busk in the City of Holdfast Bay?

You need a busking permit to perform in public space in Holdfast Bay. To obtain a free permit, buskers need to submit an online application and agree to act in accordance with the Busking Permit Conditions.

The application form asks all applicants to upload a video/ audio audition clip for review as part of their online application. Applicants will also be asked to nominate their preferred busking zone/s.

What are the age requirements?

If you are under the age of 16 years, you must have parental or legal guardian consent to apply for a permit and must not perform during school hours. Minors under the age of 15 years also require parent or guardian supervision at all times while performing.

Permit Holders under the age of 16 years are not permitted to perform during school hours.

What is the permit fee?

The permit application is free.

How long does a busking permit last?

A busking permit last for six months from the date of issue.

What is the busking permit application process?

Busking applications can be made online only.
Busking Permit applicants must include an uploaded YouTube clip or a website link that demonstrates your music or past performances.

Once a Busking Permit application has been submitted and approved a permit will be issued to you via email within ten business days. The permit will be valid for six months from the date of issue.

Applicants that are not approved will receive an email advising them of the outcome within ten business days.

Do I need public liability cover?

Council has public liability insurance in place, but does not accept liability nor assume any responsibility for any acts or omissions for buskers regardless of whether or not they are authorised to perform. It is not a mandatory condition that a busker holds public liability insurance, but it is recommended that buskers arrange their own insurance, including public liability, personal accident and illness insurance and cover for their own property and equipment.

Where can I perform?

We have identified designated busking locations / zones across the city. Locations and times vary depending on the specific zone. Permit holders are responsible for understanding the permit conditions and must select their preferred zones as part of the application process.

There are three busking zone categories;

  • Zone A – Jetty Road Glenelg
    Designated Busk Spots in Zone A are located at four sites along Jetty Road, Glenelg.
    Busking must only be undertaken between 9am – 6pm in Zone A.
    Information on the four allocated Busk Spots can be found in the Busking Permit Conditions.
  • Zone B – Moseley Square (Amplification allowed and groups of up to 4 performers)
    Busking must only be undertaken between 9am – 8pm in Zone B.
    Performances in Zone B may incorporate dangerous objects but conditions apply.
  • Zone C – Designated sites along the Esplanade at Somerton Park, Brighton & Seacliff
    Busking must only be undertaken on the weekends (Saturday / Sunday) between 10am – 6pm in Zone C.
Can I use amplification?

Buskers are permitted to use battery powered amplification in Zone B (Moseley Square, Glenelg) only. If amplification is used during a performance in Moseley Square the permit holder must ensure that the decibel level generated is no greater that 80dB(a).

The use of amplification is not permitted at the designated busking spots in Zone A or Zone C.

Can I perform at other locations?

No, buskers must only perform at the designated busk spots within the selected zones.

How long can I busk for?

Permit holders can remain at the designated busk spots for a maximum of 90 minutes and then move on.

Buskers can perform for a maximum of 45 minutes at any one time. No repetition of songs or of the performance must take place during the 45 minute time slot.

Buskers may take a break following a performance and then perform again, ensuring that they do not exceed the 90 minute maximum time limit.

Can my permit be cancelled?

Yes. We may suspend, revise or cancel a permit if you fail to adhere to any of the requirements or conditions set out in the permit.

Do I need to display my permit?

No, you do not need to display your permit but you must have a copy of the permit with you when performing.

Busking Permit Terms and Conditions

All buskers and street performers applying for a busking permit (permit), must read and agree to act in accordance with the below terms and conditions.

Busking Application Form

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Please describe your entertainment, act and /or performance and equipment that will be used

Please specify how many people in act (max 4) and their names

*please leave blank if you do not have a web address

links to your social media accounts

Please select which Busking Zone/s you would like a permit for *

You can select multiple zones. The zones can viewed in the terms and conditions.


Please upload your proof of identification (e.g. driver’s licence, passport, proof of age card)

If you are under the age of 16 years you must complete the below section to provide parental or legal guardian consent.

If you are under the age of 16 years you must complete the below section to provide parental or legal guardian consent.

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