Wakefield Council deals with seven nuisance calls a day

Wakefield Town Hall
Wakefield Town Hall

More than 2,700 complaints about noise nuisance were received by Wakefield Council last year.

The council’s environmental health department dealt with can average of seven complaints about noise every day in 2014-15.

The figure emerged in an annual report to the council’s Health Protection Sub Group, which said environmental health got 3,854 reports last year about noise, smoke, odour and dust.

The majority of incidents, some 2,712, were about noise.

Officers can issue warning letters to householders about noise nuisance and prosecute if they fail to comply.

The report said: “The Team engage a variety of persuasive and legal intervention to deal with the impact of noise and over 96 per cent of people who we have helped by us say that we have had a positive impact on their quality of life.

“We have improved our ability to deal with health-related issues that arise during investigations.”

Council staff had received training on tinnitus, a hearing condition caused by exposure to loud noises, and in supporting people with mental health problems.

Coun Maureen Cummings, the council’s cabinet member for environment and communities, said: “We believe everyone has a right to live in a safe and peaceful environment, and we take action when people behave noisily, or in an inconsiderate way which causes a disturbance to others.

“Most complaints are resolved informally. If neighbours cannot resolve a noise issue the council will investigate and if the noise is considered unreasonable we will take more formal action, up to and including court action.

“The council works closely with partners from West Yorkshire police and Wakefield and District Housing to ensure noise which is linked to anti-social behaviour is tackled using wider anti-social behaviour powers and that tenancy conditions are complied with.”

Councils have legal powers to deal with statutory noise nuisances, which include load music, vehicles and machinery.

The council can serve legal notices ordering people to keep noise down and has powers to seize equipment which is causing a nuisance.

Loud alarms can also be disconnected.

If people fail to comply with legal notices they can be prosecuted and served with anti-social behaviour orders if the noise is causing harassment, alarm or distress to neighbours.

The most common noise complaints are loud music and dogs barking, but the council also gets complaints about parties, pub noise, industrial noise and construction sites.

For advice on noise nuisance, call the council on 0345 8 506 506 or e-mail customerservices@wakefield.gov.uk

Noise problems can be reported online by logging on to the council’s website www.wakefield.gov.uk