May
15
2014

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

OIt’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 of neighbours who like to sleep at night. If those students are inclined to socialise loud and late it leads to problems.

Similarly in some cramped student houses tenants find their own space – causing more annoyance to neighbours and potentially damage to landlords property – example pictured of roof space, outside neighbours’ bedrooms, colonised as spot to smoke and drink! Even where people do party in town, noise in the street is an issue – and some come home and restart in the early hours.

The problem is not ignored however. In many areas with a high student population noise patrols are stepped up during peak party time – that is post exam

seen in a Brighton student rich neighbourhood

seen in a Brighton student rich neighbourhood

and during Fresher’s week. For example, during Noise Action Week Nottingham City Council are working with police and student bodies to promote the quiet message and this year are distributing a leaflet –  end_of_term_nottingham – and getting the message out through social media.

In Welwyn Hatfiield operation Balsam has become an annual stepping up to nightly noise patrols from 10pm to 3 am for three weeks in May dealing with all aspects of noise as well as student partying.

In Southampton, 2012 Freshers were greeted by a Sssssh campaign. In a joint initiative Southampton Solent Univerisity and Hampshire Police worked to discourage rowdy behaviour, with a threat of an £80 fine.

So, while many of us have experienced the post exam need to relax, have fun and see our course friends off in style – it can be done without keeping the neighbourhood – who may be families with children, people who get up early to work – or even others still studying – awake every night.

The timing of Noise Action Week gives student dense areas, like Nottingham, an opportunity to sound off about noise and keep the peace in neighbourhoods. Student unions, student housing services, landlords, local councils and police can all play their part in keeping the peace in neighbourhoods.

Mary Stevens
Noise Action Week Co-ordinator

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