What noise problems can the Council investigate?

Environmental Health will investigate noise nuisance complaints from a number of sources, including:

  • barking dogs,
  • noisy neighbours (loud music, TV, DIY and fireworks),
  • burglar and car alarms
  • construction and demolition work
  • noise from commercial and industrial activities
  • noise from pubs, clubs and other entertainment venues

Noise nuisance can occur at any time of the day or night and there is no legal time frame for when noise is considered a problem. This often depends on the type of noise, its frequency and duration.

Housing Services will investigate noise complaints where a council owned residential property is the source of the complaint.

The Anti-social Behaviour Section will investigate complaints about anti-social behaviour and with regard to noise in the street from loud shouting, people congregating etc. Further information is available at our anti-social behaviour page.

What can you do?

Several noise complaints, particularly those involving neighbours can be resolved informally by speaking to the person responsible. Often people are unaware that they are causing a problem and will do what they can to reduce the noise without the need to involve ‘the council’.

Reporting a noise nuisance

If you wish to progress with a formal complaint please telephone 01325 405111 (for complaints about council properties telephone 01325 405333) or email

The following details will be required:

  • Your name, address, email and telephone number (details will be kept confidential)
  • The address or location of the noise
  • The type of noise being created (for example: barking dog, loud music) and details on when and how long the noise occurs

It is vital that you provide the above information in order for us to deal with your complaint as quickly as possible. Anonymous complaints and complaints where the source of the noise is not properly known cannot always be fully investigated.

How will Environmental Health investigate my complaint?

An officer from Environmental Health will contact you within two working days to discuss your complaint and advise on how it will be investigated.

With regard to noise complaints about domestic properties this usually involves an informal approach to the person complained about followed by a letter asking them to take steps to limit any unreasonable noise.

You will be sent noise disturbance diary sheets to complete and return if the noise problem continues. The information recorded on the noise disturbance diary sheets must be detailed as these provide a basis for determining whether further monitoring is necessary. In most cases we will need to witness the noise or install noise monitoring equipment before formal action can be taken.

If the investigation concludes a statutory nuisance exists; a Noise Abatement Notice will be served on the person causing the problem. Failure to comply is a criminal offence and can lead to prosecution.

Under anti-social behaviour legislation a Community Protection Notice can be served if the noise is considered to be persistent or continuing and having a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality and the conduct is unreasonable.

More information on noise can be found at the following links: