A ‘busking duo from hell’ who turned Moseley into anything but an oasis with their renditions of just two songs have been turfed out of the area.
Guitar-strumming James Ryan and pal Andrew Stevens, who would bash dustbin lids and street furniture with drumsticks, only knew two hits - Wonderwall by Oasis and George Michael’s Faith.
But the plug has now been pulled on their impromptu gigs after fed-up residents, plagued by their late night begging antics, said it turned Moseley village into a nightmare of loud noise and fighting.
Now 40-year-old Ryan, from Dollery Drive, Edgbaston, and Stevens, also known as Andrew Cave, 39, of no fixed address, have been banned from entering parts of Moseley and playing musical instruments in public in the area.
The pair were also banned from begging anywhere in England and Wales.
They were warned they faced jail if they breached the two-year anti-social behaviour orders handed down yesterday by District Judge Qureshi at Birmingham Magistrates Court.
After the hearing, Ryan said: “The whole thing’s about playing a guitar, it’s a joke. Most people loved it.”
Birmingham City Council said the pair stood outside various pubs in Moseley singing and begging, often playing from early evening into the early hours.
The pair also waited outside taxi ranks and cashpoints along St Mary’s Row demanding money.
Revellers often joined in with them at pub closing time. As well as the excessive noise nuisance fights would often break out between groups heading home, the council said.
Birmingham’s Anti-Social Behaviour Unit and police stepped in after a catalogue of complaints from residents frustrated by repeated disturbances over an 18-month period.
One resident was forced to call police 60 times after attempts to talk to the pair was met with “abuse and threats”.
Matt Williams, 43, who has since moved out of the area, said: “I break down every time I hear Wonderwall or the intro to Faith. It was just one after the other, it was awful.
“It was everything from the noise of them busking on the streets, to begging and causing fights, to the general lawlessness it encouraged while they were there.
“They would go on until four, five or six in the morning. It was horrendous. It completely affected my life.
“I couldn’t sleep but it had a far deeper effect where all of a sudden your home isn’t a place where you could feel comfortable, safe or secure. I didn’t feel I had anywhere that was my sanctuary.”
Another victim, aged 40, added: “If you popped out to go to the shops, you would get hassled on the way out and hassled on the way back.”
Coun Ayoub Khan, Cabinet Member for Local Services and Community Safety, said: “I’m pleased that visitors and residents of Moseley will no longer be subject to this duo’s anti social behaviour.
“BASBU officers have worked in partnership with the community, housing officers and police so that our citizens can go out in Moseley without the hassle of being harassed for money or excessive noise.”
PC Rachel Lamerton, from Woodbridge Road police station said: “We’re grateful to the residents who were willing to come forward and help us and we hope it will deter future individuals within Moseley who cause anti-social behaviour.”
Officers plan to publicise the exact exclusion zones by putting up posters in the area.
Residents said that after interim banning orders against the pair were granted earlier this year, the atmosphere around Moseley Village had dramatically improved.