Report a noise problem

You can either:

  • Phone us using the number in the 'contact us' box
  • Click 'report a problem' below

Report a noise problem using an online form

Noise is becoming an increasingly important factor in everyday life. Changes in our living patterns and habits and also our increasing expectation for peace and quiet, mean that more and more people are finding cause to complain.

People's responses to noise, however, can be varied. For instance, one person may be disturbed by a noise that another person may not notice. It usually depends upon their environment and what they are used to experiencing.

Loudness of the noise is not always the important factor. It is more related to the difference between the normal background noise and the sound being complained about. A noise may be indistinguishable from the background noise during the day but at night when everything else is quiet it may seem quite loud.

Activity is also an important factor. When a person is walking about and alert then most noise generally goes unnoticed; however, if someone is trying to sleep then the slightest sound can be very disturbing. This makes the job of investigating noise complaints more challenging for enforcement officers.

Investigation procedure

Should you make a complaint concerning noise, an environmental health officer will contact you to discuss the details. The first step may be for the officer to approach the person causing the disturbance informally to try to resolve the problem. If the problem continues then noise recording equipment can be installed, if appropriate, to monitor the situation. Noise measurements may also be made using a sound level meter in order to assist the officer in determining whether or not a statutory nuisance exists.

If a statutory nuisance is found to exist then the officer will serve an Abatement Notice under the Environmental Protection Act 1990. This will require the person causing the nuisance to take appropriate action to stop the noise or reduce it to a more acceptable level. Action required for abatement is specific to each individual case. If the person causing the nuisance fails to comply with the terms of the Abatement Notice then formal action will be taken and could result in the offender receiving a heavy fine or a custodial sentence.

In the event that the environmental health officer cannot demonstrate that a Statutory Nuisance exists but the complainant is still aggrieved then the complainant may take action to abate the noise under section 82 of the act.

Find out more about the different tyes of noise nuisance. If you wish to report a domestic noise nuisance, you should contact the Anti-Social Behaviour Investigation Team.

Please use the 'contact us' box if you have any questions. For more information, see 'related pages', 'downloads' or 'other useful websites'.

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