Buskers generate crowds, activate public spaces, and entices the community to explore local entertainment in Ipswich’s own backyard. It is more than a great show, it is a way to bring Ipswich streets alive with activity, diversity and vibrancy.

Busking Licence

A busking licence allows you to perform at locations across the Ipswich region including prominent Ipswich City public spaces like the Nicholas Street Precinct, CBD and surrounds. If you want to perform on a local government-controlled area or road, you will require a busking licence.

Who is considered a busker?

A busker is an individual or group who actively performs within a reserved busking area, in exchange for a donation from passers-by. Activities considered busking in the Ipswich City area includes:

  • An instrument or multiple instruments, conventional or self-constructed
  • Singing with or without musical instruments
  • Dancing, clowning, juggling or puppetry
  • Magic, living statue, comedy, or recitation (e.g., poetry or Shakespeare)
  • Painting landscapes or chalk art
  • A circle act performance

What is not considered busking?

Activities not considered busking in the Ipswich City area includes:

  • Spruiking, hawking, touting or doctrinal preaching on governmental controlled areas and roads including the mall
  • Vendors selling products or services
  • Political rallying
  • Any individual or group performing without a busking licence

How to apply

Prior to applying for a busking licence, you must ensure that you have all the necessary supporting documentation to accompany your application. The application process consists of three stages:

Stage 1 - Lodgement

Firstly, you will need to complete a Busking Licence Application Form. Once completed, the application form and supporting documentation is to be submitted to Council for lodgement.

Stage 2 - Assessment

Council will undertake an assessment of the application against the mandatory requirements.  Your application can take up to 10 business days to be assessed. Should further information be required before your application can be decided, the assessing officer will be in contact with you to discuss any outstanding requirements. If the application meets all requirements, you will receive a notification via email advising that your application has been approved.

Stage 3 - Issue of Licence

Once approved, the licence certificate will be issued with conditions. Please ensure you are able to provide a copy of the certificate to a Council officer if requested.

Required Supporting Documentation

Information you will need to supply with your application includes:

  • Public Liability Insurance
  • Site Plan which outlines intended set up for the location requested. Measurements to be included which shows distances from buildings, infrastructure, and roadside etc.
  • Photographs of the proposed area


Applicable fees are provided via Council’s ‘Register of Fees and charges’ under ‘Road Regulation’ and is accessible via Fees and Charges


Council’s Local Law No. 3 Commercial Licensing (2013) and Local Law No. 7 (Local Government Controlled Areas and Roads) 2013 governs the use of roads and footpaths for dining and roadside vending.

Approval Conditions

Footpath Dining standard conditions are in accordance with Subordinate Local Law No. 3.1 (Commercial Licensing) 2013. These conditions are also provided on the back of the licence certificate issued for easy reference.

More information

If you require assistance with making an application, you can contact Ipswich City Council on the following: