Mar
17
2015

Pickles evidence on over-zealous noise enforcement flimsy

In February EPUK, CIEH and the Noise Abatement Society wrote to Communities Secretary Eric Pickles with a Freedom of Information request,  asking for evidence to support his assertion implying that local authorities have been misusing their powers when enforcing noise laws. In a  statement made on 2nd February Mr Pickles was quoted as saying `In recent years, too many town halls have been over-zealous in trying to silence church bells and village clocks which have […]

Mar
17
2015

Noise Action Week – reducing service costs

While it might seem like a lot of effort on top of everyday workloads, raising awareness of noise and promoting solutions to noise problems can save time and money. Research recently published by Defra analyses the cost to local authorities of investigating noise complaints. Drawing on CIEH noise complaint statistics and the time taken to investigate complaints it puts the cost to a local authority of investigating a noise complaint at between £130 and over […]

Feb
5
2015

Noise Action Week 2015 needed – government research shows

Research published by the government last week showed that more people than ever are bothered by noise. Nearly half the people surveyed said their home life is spoilt by noise to some extent and one in five reported their sleep is disturbed by noise. This makes Noise Action Week 2015, which aims to raise awareness of noise problems and promote practical solutions to noise, more important than ever this year. The week runs from 18th […]

Jun
13
2014

Can closer communities cure noise problems?

Noise in communities comes from many sources affecting all types of housing across all locations. Whether it’s poorly managed summer celebrations broadcast across the counties, urban venues and residents that shouldn’t be neighbours, or ill considered pastimes and parties – we can be disturbed and annoyed by noise where ever we are. This is why Noise Action Week, which aims to raise awareness of the issues and promote solutions, continues to be well supported by […]

May
19
2014

Noise and hidden hearing loss

Even moderate levels of noise (similar to a busy street) may damage hearing. Tracey Pollard is Research Programme Manager in the Biomedical research Team at UK charity Action on Hearing Loss. She tells us about ‘hidden hearing loss’ and some of the research Action on Hearing Loss is funding into noise-induced hearing loss. Hidden hearing loss Exposure to very loud sounds (such as a chainsaw) can permanently damage your hearing and cause significant hearing loss. […]

May
15
2014

Sssh – it’s exam time – followed by noisy parties?

It’s that time of year when students of all ages need quiet time as they knuckle down to study for exams. Once exams are over, however, the end of term party season begins. This is a particular problem in areas with large student populations. Recent research on student accommodation requirements published in Landlord Today  reveals that students want communal space. However, too often poor layout in properties means this space is next to the bedrooms […]

May
13
2014

Want happier and healthier neighbourhoods?

Noise Action Week 19th – 20th May 2014 – is here to help Noise is never out of the news for long – whether it’s Brian May’s bother with Kensington basement builders or suburban dog owners being fined for neglecting barking pets. The evidence against noise is clear – last year housing think tank Hact1 found noise has a greater impact on people’s happiness than vandalism or condensation. A recent report on environmental groups2 found […]

May
12
2014

Sound shock vs hygiene – high speed hand dryers

High-speed hand dryers are an engineering success story, chiming with the prevailing agenda of austerity and sustainability, but what is the trade off? As someone with normal hearing, Dr. John Drever found the new generation of power hand dryers in WC’s intrusive. On becoming a father he became aware of how the sudden triggering of aggressive sound in a quiet space can panic children and others sensitive to noise – prompting his investigation of the […]

May
7
2014

Snoring is a top source of sleep disturbance

Married to a snorer, specialist in sleep medicine and organiser of last week’s Stop Snoring Week, Marianne Davey knows that for most snorers and their bed partners snoring is no laughing matter. For bed partners who sleep with a snorer the most cited complaint is sleep disturbance. In clinical trials it was found that these bed partners suffered worse sleep efficiency, increased arousals and a greater percentage of lighter sleep than those with a non-snorer. […]

Apr
30
2014

Poor home sound insulation costs – privacy and cash

Following his presentation at this year’s recent Solent Acoustics Conference ‘Acoustics in the Built Environment’, acoustician and lecturer Jonty Stewart writes on some of the issues surrounding sound insulation and in particular the problems it causes. The first thing I would say is that “poor” sound insulation depends on whom is being affected: to the builder or develope. “Poor” sound insulation can probably be loosely defined as anything which doesn’t meet the legally-required performance criteria […]