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Council vows to tackle soaring noise nuisance
More than seven people a day are making official complaints about nuisance noise in Bradford.
In the last year there was a nine per cent rise in calls to Bradford Council about irritating rackets, with noise from factories and rowing neighbours topping the list of gripes.
And the local authority has said it will not shy away from prosecuting those who refuse to quieten down.
Of the 8,010 complaints made to the local authority between April 2011 and March 2014, the highest number came from residents on the streets surrounding the busy Thornbury gyratory, new figures reveal.
Other noise niggles included people reporting dins from homes, businesses and licensed premises, domestic alarms, barking dogs and construction work.
The figures, requested by the Telegraph & Argus under the Freedom of Information Act, show the 11 neighbourhoods which have made the most complaints to the Council’s noise team over the past three years.
And the local authority said that there was a nine per cent increase in 2012/13 to 2013/14.
Topping the list in Thornbury was noise from industrial premises, which accounted for more than half of the 53 complaints there.
In second place, with 49 complaints, was a neighbourhood in East Bowling, between Wakefield Road and Bowling Park, where the majority of complaints stemmed from noise from domestic properties.
The third most reported place for noise complaints was at the junction of two main roads – Manchester Road and Mayo Avenue – with more than three-quarters of the 48 complaints down to noise coming from other people’s homes.
The Council’s executive member for environment, Councillor Andrew Thornton, said the number of complaints made to the authority varied “considerably” year on year.
“No-one should have to put up with noise disturbing their everyday life,” he said. “We treat every complaint very seriously and try to solve them informally where we can, but where this is not possible, the appropriate legal remedies will be sought.
“We won’t shy away from prosecutions if our warnings are ignored.”
Of the 8,010 complaints made to the Council, 4,489 complainants were given a diary to record evidence of nuisance noise, but only a quarter, 1,101, of these diaries were completed and returned to the authority.
Environmental health officers made 3,222 visits to investigate noise complaints, sending a total of 1,146 warning letters to perpetrators.
In cases where a ‘statutory nuisance’ was proven, noise defined in The Environmental Protection Act 1990 as a “nuisance or prejudicial to health,” 179 Abatement Notices were served, 16 of which led to legal action.
Any individual who ignores an Abatement Notice can be fined up to £5,000, rising to a maximum of £20,000 for a business.
The Council teamed up with Incommunities, the district’s biggest social housing landlord, last week during national Noise Action Week to urge tenants to report any noisy neighbours.
“Noise Action Week was very successful with around 50 customers coming along to see us,” said an Incommunities spokesman.
“Noise nuisance is the most frequently reported form of anti-social behaviour, and we take all reports extremely seriously to ensure our customers can feel safe and enjoy living in their homes.
“Where appropriate, we work closely with the Council to deliver a joint response, and where noise issues continue we will seek Court Orders.”
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