Noise Nuisance

For many people excessive noise can be a source of annoyance and stress which can interfere with everyday life, cause sleep disturbance and on occasions affect your health.

The Environmental Protection Team may be able to help.

Click on REPORT IT

For information on making a complaint.


Your online Toolkit will help you find ways on how to deal with a noise problem.

Click on the Toolkit banner below to go there now.

                                                                Noise Toolkit Banner

Further information about general nuisance complaints including what and how we investigate, can be found in the booklet - Nuisance Complaints, on the right hand side of the web page under documents.

Jump to:

How we investigate a complaint

Preventing a noise nuisance

We can investigate Tick

We can't investigate  Cross

Noise from domestic premises such as loud music, TV or radio

Aircraft noise – Click on  Civil Aviation Authority for further advice

Noise from commercial premises

Road Traffic Noise - For more information in your area, please click on Roadworks

DIY activities taking place over long periods at unreasonable hours

Complaints where the noise is a problem because the complainant is “sensitive” due to personal/medical reasons

Continually ringing alarms in homes and on vehicles

Noise transmitted by poor sound insulation

Noise from plant, machinery and equipment

General daily living noises

Noise from construction and demolition sites. See Code of Practice Construction Sites PDF

We only have very limited powers to deal with noise from the railway. If you have a problem with noise from trains please click on Network rail for further guidance.

Noise from sporting activities e.g. motor bike scrambling, clay pigeon shooting etc


Noise in the street e.g. loudspeakers, ice cream chimes or buskers


 Dogs that persistently bark

How we investigate a complaint

The Environmental Protection Team can take reasonable steps to investigate and take action where a complaint of noise disturbance amounts to a Statutory Nuisance.  While the term “Statutory Nuisance” is not precisely defined in law, it generally means that the noise must unreasonably interfere with the use and enjoyment of property, as assessed by a reasonable person.   

For a complaint about noise to be upheld, it has to be judged a statutory nuisance - something that unreasonably interferes with the use and enjoyment of your property as assessed by an average person. We may also investigate under antisocial behaviour legislation provisions.

When assessing if an alleged nuisance is a Statutory Nuisance, an Environmental Health Officer will make an assessment based on these points.

  1. The time(s) at which it happens

  2. How often it happens

  3. How long it lasts

  4. The volume or intensity of the alleged nuisance

  5. The location and Characteristics of the area where the alleged nuisance takes place

Our normal response to a noise complaint is, in the first instance, to send a letter to the person who you believe to be making the noise, with the aim of resolving the matter informally. The letter to the alleged person(s) responsible, does not state who has made the complaint. If the matter persists, we will also ask you to complete a noise diary, of any further incidents on log sheets that are provided.

If you submit your completed noise diary, we will assess the log, and if we consider there is a justified complaint, we may install noise monitoring equipment or make a visit to determine whether the noise amounts to a statutory nuisance.

If we witness the noise and decide it is a statutory nuisance, then we will serve a noise abatement notice on the person responsible, requiring abatement of the nuisance.

If a person fails to comply with a noise abatement notice, then we can consider seizing and confiscation any audio equipment and prosecuting offenders in the magistrates’ court.

How to prevent a noise nuisance

Noise can prevent people's enjoyment of their homes and become a nuisance. The leaflets below contain practical advice about how to reduce nuisances and prevent them.

How to prevent noise nuisance - Domestic (PDF 250K)

How to prevent noise nuisance - Commercial (PDF 250KB)

How to prevent noise nuisance - Animals (PDF 250KB)

Control of noise from licensed premises (PDF 250KB)

Best practice guide for events - ways to prevent noise disturbance (PDF 91.24 KB)

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