The law expects that people will put up with a “reasonable” amount of noise being caused by others as part of their normal daily activities.

In the first instance, if safe to do so, you should make the person creating the nuisance aware of how it is affecting you and ask if they can do something to help.

If speaking to your neighbour fails, you can report noise pollution to us online or 020 7926 5000 during our opening hours.

What can we do?

Some types of noise nuisance are more easily dealt with than others.

For instance, many complaints we receive relate to the playing of loud music, televisions, barking dogs or machinery. These can normally be dealt with under the powers available to us.

Other complaints such as noisy children, banging of doors, late night arrivals and departures, do not readily lend themselves to enforcement action. However, in these cases, we may still be able to assist you by either taking informal action or by advising you on the best course of action.

We try to treat all complaints in confidence, but there may be occasions when we will be required to release information to third parties. If we ever need to do this, we will let you know and give you the opportunity to decline.

We will never disclose your personal information to perpetrators or a third party without your consent, however it is certainly possible that the person causing the alleged nuisance might guess where the report has come from. In these circumstances you should advise us of any concerns you may have around risk to you and any other person associated to you. This will help us work with you to mitigate any risk factors.

You should be aware before making a complaint that, although our procedures are generally effective, it can occasionally aggravate the situation. If this is the case, we will work with you to try and mitigate any risk factors.

Responsive service

The Council operates a responsive service during the following hours:

  • Monday to Friday 9am-5pm
  • Thursday 8pm-4am
  • Friday and Saturday 9pm-5am

The responsive service is only available by calling 020 7926 5000 during the above hours.

If you make a request to our responsive service, the Principal Officer on duty will conduct a review of your complaint and respond to you via telephone within half an hour. The review will involve conducting background checks on our systems which will assist in making a decision as to what level of response is required.

Generally, the outcome of the review will determine what priority your complaint will be given as follows:

  • Priority 1 - once you are notified officers are attending, they will aim to attend within 1½ hours

  • Priority 2 - once you are notified officers are attending, they will aim to attend within 2 hours

  • Priority 3 - officers will not attend

If officers attend your home, they will usually have to conduct an assessment from within a habitable. Habitable rooms include living areas and bedrooms. If officers are unable to conduct an assessment as described above, it is unlikely that any action can be taken.

Action we may take

Once officers have attended, if they are satisfied that a nuisance exists in-line with statutory guidance, the normal outcome will involve a legal notice being served, requiring that the nuisance is stopped or restricted. If further nuisance was to occur after the serving a notice and this is witnessed again by officers, it is likely legal proceedings would follow.

With ongoing cases we may ask you to keep and complete diary sheets, detailing dates and details of incidents that are causing you a nuisance. This provides evidence in demonstrating the extent of nuisance should any legal proceedings be necessary. It also useful for the investigating officer to establish of the nuisance.

For ongoing and the most serious cases, if the evidential threshold has been met we may seek a Warrant of Entry or a Closure Order from a Magistrates Court to bring about an improvement.