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The usual complaint I guess, LOUD music.

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  • The usual complaint I guess, LOUD music.


    New to the board, started looking for advice and groups to help out with the probs we have recently started having.

    Been at our house, which is detached for a little while now.

    Everything was fine until very recently, the kids next door, well late teens, have put a very loud and bassy stereo in the shed, and music is pumping out at random times, causing us a great deal of distress!!

    If it is not harrassment, I certainly do not know what is.

    Not only is our garden totally inaccessible when the music is being played, pretty much the whole of our house is too, there is no escaping the thud and drone in any room!! You can imagine how loud it must be to be heard clearly and annoyingly in a detached house.

    Our neighbors one side have even put their house up for sale, but I dont think anyone has taken it to any authority.

    Nothing has been said to the neighbours, why? Well simply you know the type who just are not going to care what you say, and will probably make the noise more frequently just to harrass further.

    This goes on daily, sometimes we get the odd day of peace, peace is all we want!!

    No idea why all of a sudden this has started happening, we thought initially ok, new toy, they'll get bored, clearly not the case.

    Others in the area are certainly being impacted by the noise, but you know how people can be, scared to complain incase of any retribution.

    Can anyone offer any advice?

    Been in a similar situation?

    This one is maybe a little different due to the noise coming from outside, a shed.

    I am thinking of buying some sound recording equipment and anonymously sending it to the Council. Will it do any good?

  • #2
    Welcome to the board Vin

    Noise like this is exceptionally intrusive, Bass sounds are one of the worst things as they vibrate through your house and you can literally feel them everywhere. We all understand how annoying and distressing this can be for you and your family.

    Quick questions:

    - Have you written to your neighbour if you don't want to approach them? Even if you don't feel like you want to talk to them about the problem, you may have to, even if it's to prove to the council you have tried to remedy the problem yourself. Before a local authority EHO will often get involved for example, they will ask you what have you done to try and remedy the problem yourself etc.

    - Are you keeping a noise log? If not, start straight away. Record what happens, when, how long for, and most importantly how it affects you.

    NFH Resources has some blank logs and a template to use as an initial letter to Neighbours.

    Maybe it is still worth considering approaching your neighbours, you never know, you *may* get a positive response. If you feel uneasy about going to do this, as I say, try writing or maybe go with another neighbour (say, the one who is moving because of this could be an idea?).

    A mediation service could help too. Try one in your local area. Get some more info from the NFH Links Dir

    How long has this been happening for now exactly? Have you taken any other steps etc? Sorry for all the questions, just trying to get a good overview

    I wouldn't advise buying your own recording equipment at this point. The council probably won't use it and it's unlikely it wouldn't be admissable in court, they also need to be 'approved devices'. The sound recording equipment provided by the Council (if you came to that) is properly and legally calibrated and also 'time stamps' the time/duration of each recording and is legally useable. You could contact your local authority for more advice though.

    Glad you found us on the forum


    • #3

      Also meant to say, if you've not seen it already, take a look at the Noise Act of 1996 (Available in full on NFH in Britain).

      Here's the direct link to the Noise Act 1996


      • #4
        Hi Matthew, thanks for the prompt response.

        Yes we have been keeping a log.

        Writing to them may provoke them in the same way pointing it out to them verbally would, I would kind of expect an increase in noise!! Could be wrong, but sometimes you just feel these things.

        Having heard and read how unhelpful the EH and council can be, we are not feeling too comforted right now. But, we do feel that we should be able to make an anonymous complaint to the EH and they respond in the same way they are always meant too, by sending a letter to these neighbours pointing out the noise pollution act.

        I did make a call to them a couple of weeks back just to find out what could be done, but they wanted all our details, this seriously concerned me, just incase the neighbours did find out who complained.

        And I know that has happened to someone before. It made their life worse. (not in this area, not the same problem)


        • #5
          Agreed - there's always the problem and potential that making your neighbours aware they are causing a problem could in fact make it worse. It's definitely always a tricky one. A balancing act between "do I live with this for fear of making it worse" or "do I stand up against them and fight back" - a personal choice for sure.

          Your Local Authority may take some steps to attempt to rectify the situation, but I'm guessing they will be severely limited without your details (e.g. staying anonymous). Ask the council though about their privacy procedures - they should and most probably would keep you anonymous as the original instigator ('complainer') of the noise - in my experience your neighbours should not be told who made the complaint against them. Although that's not to say your neighbours may not guess who has instigated it.

          If you don't want to ring them again, why not e-mail your council if you can? Web based e-mail is a wonderful thing when you need an 'extra' (ahem!) e-mail address you can use for such things....!

          Beware officially complaining though if you intend to move, it will pose as an 'official dispute' with your neighbours, etc..............

          I don't think all Council EH depts are unhelpful, just some Hopefully, you've got a decent council in your area?

          I'm glad you're keeping the log, I know it's irritating to log everything down and it makes you live it even more, but you need this as evidence.

          Consider reporting it to your local police too if it's happening late at night and for extended/frequent periods.


          • #6
            The NP act only seems to talk about noise at night, not excessive noise during the day? Does this mean people can make as much noise as they want without regard for those around them?

            Or am I missing the section?


            • #7
              The Noise Act 1996 covers specifically noise at night, as this is seen as the most "undesirable". Night tends to cover the hours between 11pm - 7am. Although we all know that noise during the day can be equally as bad.

              The act is concerned mainly with how notices can be served for noise abatement, how evidence can be collated (e.g by approved measuring devices), penalties for breaking such notices and so on.

              Admittedly, it isn't the most effective or useful piece of legislation to help with intitial stages, more for pointing out regulations/info about notices/recording devices/evidence etc.


              • #8
                Actually, thinking about it, the noise is emanating from the garden shed?

                This is hence I would imagine causing noise in the street?

                Noise and Statutory Nuisance Act 1993

                Also, look at the Environmental Protection Act 1990


                • #9
                  Its causing ALOT of noise in the street!! That is the biggest problem of all.


                  • #10
                    Hi Vin,

                    nice to meet you.

                    Can sympthise with your plight. Being teenagers theyve probably had the music system punted out to the shed because of the din in the house!!

                    As Matthew has said you really need to get the ball rolling regarding this with your local authority and also your neighbourhood police officer.

                    As well as the official route you could try a more 'subtle' approach.

                    You say that you dont want to 'provoke' your NFH which is totally understandable but have you thought about an anonymous letter worded in such a way as to make it sound like a 'collective' complaint...................."we dont like to complain but ... etc etc............signed, the neighbourhood"

                    just a thought?

                    Or of course you could take the fight fire with fire approach and give them a taste of their own medicine!!. Arrange to go out for the day but before you do put your hifi in the garage, find a loud CD, press play, repeat , walk away, lock garage, go away for day.

                    I know this may not sound like 'sensible' advice but sometimes it is the only language that these people understand.

                    Just thought you might like a different approach.


                    "Take off and nuke the site from orbit- it's the only way to be sure!"

                    apologies if you are an "Aliens" fan

                    Posh Noodle - NOT for the likes of YOU!!


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Vin@May 5 2003, 7:37 PM

                      Its causing ALOT of noise in the street!!Â* That is the biggest problem of all.
                      Then it sounds like this legislation could be for your situation.

                      Most of it's online at NFH in Britain

                      The rest that isn't is here on the HMSO

                      Key Area:

                      Noise in street to be a statutory nuisance

                      {B} after paragraph (g) there shall be inserted— " (ga) noise that is prejudicial to health or a nuisance and is emitted from or caused by a vehicle, machinery or equipment in a street;"[/b]

                      Main thing here seems to be that although the music is causing a disturbance in the street, it isn't originating from the street (it's in a private garden). Maybe contact your local police, mention this act and ask for their opinion/advice?


                      • #12
                        Hi Vin and welcome to the Forum

                        Other members have already offered advice on this, but just to give you my perspective on the situation:

                        - You are doing right to jot down any and all instances of noise (make sure you supply all relevant information - follow the sheet in the resources section that Matthew has already directed you to).

                        - Noise is a "statutory nuisance" as Sue has already said. The owner/occupier of the property is the person who will be held responsible in terms of action from the Environmental Health (EH) department. The owner cannot therefore say, "It's not me, it's my children". Noise late at night may be more of a nuisance, but I think in your case the volume (regardless of the time of day) is likely to be considered a nuisance.

                        - If you are intending to stay in your home and you want the noise to stop, then I'm afraid you must contact your neighbours. You can do this face to face or in writing. You must make some attempt to raise the problem with them - they may (unlikely, I know) be unaware of the impact the noise is having on you.

                        (In my situation, I spoke to my nfh (neighbour from hell) about five times and wrote twice)

                        - Contact the EH if the neighbour doesn't respond to your complaint. Again, I'm afraid, you will need to provide them with some personal details. When they contact your nfh, they will say that they have had a complaint - they will not name you (or they shouldn't), although your nfh may have a good idea where the complaint has come from.

                        - You could contact mediation.

                        - You could fight fire with fire (my personal view is that T*t for tat behaviour is likely to make the situation worse and will not help you if you need to progress your case further with the EH).

                        - The EH process is a fairly lengthy one, we can give you further informaiton on this if you want it - although each EH/ local authority (LA) may have slightly different procedures).

                        - As others have said, if you are considering moving, then an official complaint to the EH will mean that you have to disclose the dispute/ complaint on the sellers form.

                        So, just to sum up, your options are:

                        * Stay and put up with the noise

                        * Stay and discuss with noise perpetrators, then pursue EH and/or Mediation

                        * Move

                        Good luck with whatever you decide and remember, we're all here whenever you want to talk to someone about it.


                        • #13
                          Hi Vin,

                          I've come late to this discussion but I can see you've had a lot of sound advice from other members. I just want to say I sympathise with your situation but unless your neighbour knows how badly it is affecting you I doubt it will go away.

                          I seem to recall there was a news story that Matthew posted about a young man who was using a garage to play his music and the result was his father was fined because of it. I can't see it on the news listings. But it's encouraging to know that magistrates take this kind of thing seriously.

                          Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

                          "Almost anything you do will seem insignificant, but it is very important that you do it. You must be the change that you wish to see in the world." Gandhi


                          • #14
                            Hi Vin

                            welcome to the board.

                            you can not continue to put up with this, talking from experiance loud music can have a detramental effect on your health and it is not worth becoming poorly for.

                            You need to do something about this, it seems easier said than done....but you must be strong and stand up for your rights.

                            the others have offered good advice as always, and believe me, the chinese water torture of loud music is...dreadful

                            you could ask the EHO not to give your details, as it seems to be effecting evceryone in the street it could be any one that reports it.

                            have you spoken to your other neighbours about this?

                            if you can get their support to it will help you, in many ways, one way just knowing you are not alone in this.

                            good luck with what ever you decide to do


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Mistyeyeddreamer@May 6 2003, 11:58 AM

                              I seem to recall there was a news story that Matthew posted about a young man who was using a garage to play his music and the result was his father was fined because of it.
                              Oh yes Misty, well remembered, will see if I can post it........

                              Here it is: