The streets of Bath are notoriously busy, there are the locals, the tourists, people coming for the shopping, people coming for the rugby, or the university, or the other university or the Jane Austen Society and so it goes on. With such crowded streets there are also people attracted by the fact that the streets are so busy.
So we have the charity workers, the Chuggers. Usually smiling and confident who will ambush you in the street in an attempt to get you signed up to whichever charity is employing them that day. There are the Big Issue sellers and what a good idea that is but it does seem as if we all have our own personal Big Issue seller at times, I counted three within one hundred metres just before Christmas – too many! And there are the buskers; oh my Lord but are there buskers. Some are wonderful and entertaining others simply are not. If you simply can’t sing but do it in a humorous way that’s fine but if you really can’t sing and are the one person on earth that thinks you can – then don’t; you will get upset when people laugh at you.
Then there is the matter of amplification; there are guide lines but no one ever appears to enforce them so we are assailed by too loud music, personally I’d happily ban amplification completely. Acoustic buskers are many and varied some wonderful others not so; there are the young and the old and they come up with some really great original ideas on how to entertain us and I wish them well.
And then there are the placard carriers. I take my hat off to these people for what must be a totally tedious job. I remember when ‘sandwich men’ could regularly be seen walking up and down Oxford Street and one in particular who foretold the Day of Judgement but placard carriers just have an advertising notice on a stick. Always for a local business and sometimes with an arrow pointing where to go. I take my hat off though to these guys who have embraced the job and got together to make it as comfortable and bearable as possible. Good for you!