Former director of Glasgow museums and eminent art historian Julian Spalding has called for curbs on buskers in the Scottish capital.

The outspoken art critic said he is considering quitting his home in the Grassmarket if musicians and street acts continue without better restrictions.

Edinburgh City Council has previously moved to limit the amount of time buskers including pipers perform on tourist streets like the Royal Mile.

Mr Spalding, who was director of attractions including Kelvingrove for nine years and set up the Gallery of Modern Art in Glasgow, said in online business blog Scotbuzz that he is not a killjoy.

He said: "I like personal artistic expression, even, sometimes, in the street.

"But I also like peace and quiet and have the right to expect it in my own home.

"We’ve lived happily in the Grassmarket for nearly 30 years, but the noise from busking has recently become so bad that unless something is done about it, we’re going to be driven out."

He said he has called on the council to do more to restrict the length of time buskers can perform at one site.

Mr Spalding went on: "Busking, usually grotesquely amplified, now happens throughout the year but becomes frequent from Easter to late autumn, and continuous through the high summer, with individuals and bands often playing from midday till late at night.

"People living and working in the city centre seem to have become paralysed in the face of this problem."

He said: "Other cultural cities like Paris, Venice and Munich, where the quality of life of residents and office workers still counts for something, have simply made busking illegal.

"This draconian solution is unlikely in a city that hosts the Fringe and is the capital of a nation renowned for its pipers.

"Other authorities licence busking very successfully, not to control taste, but to weed out chancers and introduce strict codes of practice."

He said licensed buskers could be held to restrictions and buskers should be auditioned for designated sites.

The council previously launched a campaign for street performers outlining best practice and urging performers to move to another pitch at least 50 metres away after every two hours and banned the use of amplifiers.

A council spokeswoman said earlier the move helped remind performers "that while they make a positive contribution, they also have a responsibility to consider others by keeping noise levels down".

Councillor Gavin Barrie, Licensing Convener for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “Edinburgh is world-renowned for being an artistic city, and the majority of buskers contribute positively to this reputation. Even though street performers aren’t legally required to be licensed by the Council, they are expected to stick to our guidelines, which include keeping noise levels to a reasonable level, not performing after 9pm, and moving pitches after an hour.

“We’ll look into Mr Spalding’s suggestions and discuss if they can be taken on board in due course.”