An odour can be defined as a smell that is detectable. Odour is subjective, what is offensive to one person may be acceptable to another.

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What you can do if experiencing an odour problem

Report it

What we do and don't investigate

Do        Tick

Don't          cross

Odour or Fumes of Gases from commercial buildings / Businesses Odours from domestic properties
  We have limited powers to deal with muck spreading              

Preventing an odour nuisance

Click on how to prevent an odour nuisance(PDF) for further information

What you can do if experiencing an odour nuisance

It’s always a good idea to try and resolve problems informally by just letting your neighbour know that there is a problem.

Talk to your neighbour

You could let your neighbour know that there is a problem, by having a conversation, or if you feel that you cannot speak to your neighbour, you could write a letter. You may like to use our template letter as an example.

Odour nuisance template letter(Word Doc)

The council only has a duty to act and take enforcement action when it can be shown to be a statutory nuisance. The occasional occurrence is unlikely to be a statutory nuisance even though it may be an annoyance. To be classed as a statutory nuisance in terms of the law, it must be clear that the nuisance has a significant impact upon people nearby.

Report it

If after considering the information above, you may report the problem to the Environmental Protection Team.

Please contact us on Tel 01225 477551 8.30am to 5.00pm Monday to Thursday and 8.30am to 4.30pm Friday 

If the problem is happening out of office hours, then please contact us the next  working day on Tel 01225 477551 in order to speak to an Environmental Health Officer about your concerns.

If you prefer to log your call at the time of the incident, then you may call:

Out of hours logging service - Tel 01225 477477.

Please note, we do not offer a reactive service to problems happening out of office hours. This is a logging service only. Calls logged will be passed to the Environmental Protection Team the next working day. They will then contact you within 2 working days.

What we need from you

When making a complaint  you must include:

  • Your name, address and if possible contact telephone number(s) and your email address
  • The address you are complaining about and the type of nuisance(e.g. loud music, extractor fan, bonfire, accumulation of rubbish etc.)
  • When and for how long the nuisance normally occurs
  • The way the nuisance affects you e.g. prevents sleep

Anonymous complaints will not be investigated.

How we investigate

Once we have confirmed that you wish to make a formal complaint, we will write to the property that is allegedly causing the problem, to make them aware that a complaint has been received and advice on how to avoid further problems.

We will also ask you to complete logs sheets for a period of 14 days.

Complaints of regular occurring odour are investigated under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (Statutory Nuisance legislation). Factors that are examined during our investigation process are:

  • The time(s) at which it happens
  • How often it happens
  • How long it lasts
  • Intensity of the odour
  • Type of odour
  • Location and characteristics of the area

If the officer receives evidence that a statutory nuisance exists or the matter is unreasonable, a notice can be served upon the person(s) responsible. Failure to comply with the notice can result in court action. If convicted, the person responsible for the nuisance can face a fine.

Take your own Civil Action PDF






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