1. Find the Best Pitches: Local Markets are Your Friends
Lincoln is a great place to busk any day of the week. There are enough spots where you could find somewhere even if there are other buskers out. Also there are a lot of tourists, students and locals which means a variety of passers by at any time of the day. And if it starts raining you can temporarily hide under The Stonebow if you’re near the high street or under the Exchequer Gate if you’re on the top of the hill. They are the best rainy day busking spots in Lincoln that I can think of, I’ve even played under them when it was raining too much to go back out. It's mild weather now but might get cold soon, so check out my winter busking tips.
If you go to the other villages in Lincolnshire however, there aren’t as many people around. In those cases it’s best to look up when the local markets are happening. A quick google search will help you find the right times and locations. Then you will know when it is a good time to busk in town. In some markets like in Louth, you’re not allowed to busk in the market area without permission, but if you find a spot with good footfall just outside of the market then it’s just as good. As mentioned here you need to make a plan for a successful busking experience.
You want to be welcomed back by the locals.
You don’t need a licence to busk and there are no laws regarding busking in Lincolnshire. However, local councils usually have guidelines on their websites. This is the city of Lincoln’s code of conduct for busking https://democratic.lincoln.gov.uk/documents/s56898/Busking%20Code%20of%20Conduct%20-%20June%202021.pdf. The main point is to treat everyone with respect and it’ll be an enjoyable experience for everyone.
Conclusion: Busking in Lincolnshire's villages is a rewarding venture for musicians seeking a more intimate connection with their audience. By tailoring your approach to the unique characteristics of each village and respecting local conventions, you'll create a musical experience that resonates with both villagers and visitors alike. Next in this series is Nottinghamshire, so keep your eye out for that.
Have you busked in Lincolnshire? Do you have any busking stories in Lincolnshire villages? Add your tips in the comment section below!
Serena Smith is an American British violinist and fiddle player. I play full time as a street musician in addition to the live gigs I perform with several bands.