Jan
22
2014

Live music and nuisance – the mixed development dilemma

Val Weedon, who received an MBE for her work as a noise campaigner is also a music promoter. Val considers recent decisions in managing live music venues near homes. When the relaxation to licensing regulations for live music events was introduced last year with the introduction of the Live Music Act 2012, concerns were raised about a possible increase in complaints. I found myself in a bit of a dilemma, empathising with live music venues […]

Jan
15
2014

Should environmental health officers be working to reduce neighbour noise?

Gareth Hooper, EHO and vice chair of the EPUK noise committee considers options for reducing neighbour noise problems. Noise nuisance continues to blight peoples’ lives, with statistics from the Chartered Institute for Environmental Health (CIEH) revealing the significant majority of complaints to local authorities are about residential noise. A MORI report commissioned by Defra suggests 63% of people hear noise from their neighbours. There is a range of noises and a range of responses – […]

Jan
13
2014

Proposed new ASBO laws concern noise professionals

The Anti Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Bill 2013 – 14 sets out amended powers for dealing with anti social behaviour, including noise, intending to provide simpler, more effective powers and acting as a deterrent to anti-social behaviour.  The suitability and clarity of some of these powers has been questioned by environmental health professionals responsible for enforcing noise regulation throughout its drafting.  Having reached it s final readings in the House of Lords last week […]

May
22
2013

A Big Shout for Noise Action Week Supporters

In England alone local authorities receive over 1000 complaints a day about noise. Many more people complain to landlords or housing providers, direct to neighbours or to the police (the police have no duty to act on noise). There are many who suffer in silence and don’t complain – whether out of politeness, fear of intimidation, perception that complaining will impact on property value or simply because they don’t know where to go for help. […]

May
20
2013

For Local Authorities: Noise Complaint Figures inform Public Health

Defra, the government department responsible for noise, are supporting Noise Action Week. Noise is recognised as a factor impacting on people’s health in the Public Health Outcomes Framework (PHOF) 2012. This sets out a vision for public health in England, with desired outcomes and indicators to aid understanding of how well public health is being improved and protected. The PHOF includes a noise indicator as a ‘wider determinant of health’. Local authority noise complaints returns […]

May
19
2013

Britain’s Top 10 Summer Sounds

As we move into ‘summer’ hardy Brits are out enjoying the great outdoors. At this time of year local authority noise patrols are kept busy as windows open, the outdoor event and festival season gets going and neglected gardens are transformed into outdoor rooms. However, summer sound isn’t all bad –  – we found this survey from  summer 2008 that asked 2,500 people to name their favourite summer sounds – and here ‘s the top […]

May
15
2013

Live tweeting helps quiet study

Its exam time and students of all ages and stages are studying for exams. It ‘s also the time of year that windows (weather permitting) start to open, and outdoor noise increases. Noise disrupts concentration on studies (or work) and causes annoyance and friction with family, house mates and colleagues. While avoiding the noise is the best solution – it isn’t always possible. House mates or family will want to chat, watch TV or play […]

May
11
2013

For Local Authorities: Noise Enforcement Survey informing Public Health

Reminder to all local authority noise teams to return their figures on noise complaints and enforcement by the end of July. The Chartered Institute for Environmental Health (CIEH) – collect data on behalf of Defra.  With noise now part of the Public Health Outcomes Framework it is more important than ever to get a detailed reflection of the extent that noise is impacting on individuals and communities. Log on to complete the survey here.  

May
11
2013

Injunction Powers – Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Bill

In the Queen’s Speech last week the Crime and Anti – Behaviour Bill was announced. There are a number of measures in the Bill that impact on noise and anti-social behaviour that is often associated with, or a cause of, noise. In particular the Bill contains an new potential power of ’Injunctions to prevent nuisance and annoyance’. This is a civil power which can be used against anyone over the age of 10 – in […]

May
1
2012

Noise nuisance or traditional sound; the silencing of Wrington clock

As Noise Action Week approaches – a contribution to the debate as to when sound becomes noise, and the appropriate application of nuisance law has arisen in a Somerset village. Here the church clock has been silenced by a nuisance order, following complaint from new residents in the village – while established residents are reported to consider the chimes a part of village life. This is not the first time that a case has shown […]