World Buskers Festival returns to Christchurch for its 30th anniversary

Christchurch is celebrating the 30th anniversary of the World Buskers Festival with international performers returning for the first time in three years.

Bread and Circus brings frivolity, flair and fun to the garden city and the punters were out in force today to see it.

Whether it's juggling up a ladder, basketball on an umbrella, or a glass of beer appearing out of nowhere, the buskers are back in Christchurch, marking 30 years of the garden city hosting them.

Festival director Scott Maidment told Newshub "it's amazing" and "a great legacy for the city".

"It's the envy of a lot of cities around the world because it's something that's happened for 30  years."

But the last few have caused a COVID headache including cancelling the festival completely last year.

"We reimagined this festival seven times last year before it got cancelled, so it's like doing seven times the work and then not having an outcome," Maidment said.

The baskets are back with a vengeance, with international performers making up 50 percent of this year's acts.

It's been tough going for the street performers who earn their income from travelling the world like one modern clown duo from Argentina.

"It was very, very hard," they said.

But now they're hitting their goals.

"Like a dream to come here, we played rugby when we were younger and always in our mind it was like All Blacks and now we are here performing."

More than 100,000 people are expected over the two-week festival,  making it worth the council funding that helps bring Bread and Circus to town.

"About 500,000-plus extra visitors spend in the city and that comes from about 120,000 to 130,000 people that come along throughout the 17 days," said Christchurch NZ's general manager Tracey Wilson.

And sorry to brag but the Christchurch weather has been perfect for buskers and it's set to stick around.

A great ingredient for the cocktail of buskers that awaits.