Oxford buskers will be forced to face the music if a council code of conduct restricting their performance is ratified this week. A 13-point code of conduct governing all buskers working in Oxford is expected to come into force next month. The code was born out of wide-ranging consultations with both residents and businesses, and aims to ensure that musicians perform only in areas where they are least likely to cause disruption. Other measures include plans to limit the amount of time a musician may play for, as well as the issue of special ‘Busker’s permits’ which will only be given to those who agree to comply with the code of conduct. This is in response to what the council sees as the growing problem of buskers performing in areas where they are causing annoyance, such as in front of offices and in academic buildings. Classicist Laura Green welcomes the move if it prevents busking from disturbing library study, which she claims is “really inconsiderate.” The response amongst the busking community has been decidedly lukewarm. Phil Freizinger, a popular street musician, welcomes what he sees as an “official recognition of the value of street music” but wonders why the council needed to create the new regulations.ARCHIVE:  1st Week MT2003