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Jan/Feb 202  headlines

Airfield loses ’agent of change’ battle to prevent housing
Aberdeenshire Council wins turbine abatement notice challenge
Tesco store coolers too noisy
Flats allowed at appeal despite fear of hum
Scottish buy to let must now be licensed
IoA seeks data from domestic heat pump noise
IoA warns of heat pump noise
ProPG advice follows fears of misuse
IoA warns on need to control drone noise
Energy National Policy Statements advice
Low noise aircraft descent paths redefined
£3.7m for airspace changes
PDRs for marquees made permanent
92% of Londoners bothered by noise
Noise features highly in Lords defeat of Crime Bill
Tube noise restarts post Covid
Noise worsens diabetes risk: quiet facade metric preferable
Important announcement: Noise Bulletin to close - last issue March


December 2021 headlines

Motherwell pizza machine refused due to noise
Noise fence refused against officer advice
North Tyneside Council stung by costs
Late evidence leads to costs against North Tyneside
Current guidance inadequate for Spaceport growth
ANC award winners announced
25 bed party house refused against officer’s advice
Scotland brings short term lets into legislation
Scotland mulls recommendations for heat pump deployment
Noise provisions of Crime bill debated in Parliament
Westminster debates firework noise
Seven percent rise in noise complaints in Northern Ireland
IoA comments on proposed gym acoustics guidance
MP seeks presumption against nearby quarries
Harlow resident ignores abatement notice
Danish nurse study suggests noise increases strokes
Another Danish study finds increased stroke risk
KP Acoustics plans to ‘disrupt’ the industry


November 2021 headlines

UK's path to net zero hinges on heat pumps
Noise fears from take up of heat pumps
Heat pump warning from Peter Rogers
Turner warns of heat pump noise risk
Air conditioning in residential area not okay, says inspector
Cheshire East Council censured by Ombudsman
IoA regrets noise omission on Net Zero Aviation
Drone lobby set out regulation ideas
Inspector savages attempts to build on noisy site
Garden gym noise case reaches High Court
Agent of change sinks new housing in North Tyneside
Scottish Government downplays turbine nuisance
Uttlesford abandons Stansted fight
John Connell Awards 2021 announced
Worthing school wins IoA soundscape competition
Churchill in as new new noise minister
Toulouse court awards turbine sufferers €110,000
Low frequency noise from turbines identified heart effects
Amplitude modulation much worse at night
£3,000 fine for notice breach
£1400 Prestwich penalty
York gets tough on two


October 2021 headlines

Independent aviation noise body disbanded

Landfill operator must have regard to sensitive child

Ramps removed to cut motorbike noise

Drone noise included in future transport probe

ICCAN abolition explained in more detail

ICCAN Decision based on ‘independent’ review

ICCAN abolition reactions

Lords ICCAN fears

UKNA bemoans cuts to environmental health services

Playground noise sufferers told to go to Magistrates

Lockdown drop in flights cuts noise

Acousticians propose ProPG for gym noise

Old folks’ noise is disruptive, inspector says

Agent of change sinks former colliery redevelopment

New Cross flats win High Court acceptance

Appeal fails for residential nursery

Gatwick goes ahead with expansion plans

Flats near special needs school quashed

MoD flight noise claim dismissed by High Court

Dining noise leads to planning refusal

Consultation keeping temporary structure relaxation

Wales rescinds Covid noise relaxations

Delivery question

Evans to Savills

Supermarket breach delivery restrictions

Camera rollout?

Harlow uses single justice procedure for noise nuisance

16 dogs in semi leads to fine


August/September 2021 headlines     #156

Noise camera research finally released
In Parliament: noisy exhausts - use CPNs, councils urged
Tranquility key to kennels appeal refusal
Construction noise grounds for refusal
Judicial review hinges on noise condition
Disputed aviation study SONA updated to fix calculation issues more
Noise impact sinks houses at Cranfield
Covid lockdown leads to lower flightpaths
Meta analysis suggests aviation noise learning effect
Noise concerns overcome at Coventry hotel appeal
Third refusal for Reading city centre flats
Cloud houses stymied by wind farm noise
Change of use appeal fails lack of specification
HMO too noisy and loses at appeal
‘Natural capital’ guidelines updated
Extended rollover for night flight restrictions
Guidance offered on antisocial behaviour
IoA notes clause number changes in NPPF
ICBEN report: hundreds of noise and health papers
Environment Agency strays into urban territory
Kirklees Council secures closure order on Birstall property
Festival fined for Covid noise breaches


July 2021 headlines     #155



Kennels sinks plans for back garden flats
Cambridge City planning conditions on heat pumps
Covid lockdown cuts noise in Dublin
Noiseapp blocks complainant leading to Ombudsman rap
‘Outcomes indicator’ updated
Defra sets out research plans
Loud belching not a statutory nuisance
Covid derogation means Tendring didn’t serve noise notice
Grant awarded to investigate impacts of drone noise
Drone noise ‘more annoying’
Cole Jarman and RSK merge
Learning impacts from airport noise
Noise impacts included in spaceport plans
Breast cancer link found by Danes
Airport inquiries mull noise impact
Southampton protesters commence challenge
Shield awarded MBE in Queen's Birthday Honours List
Female acousticians celebrate International Women in Engineering Day
£140m upgrade aims to cut flaring noise nuisance
Firework restrictions tight in Scotland
Sensitivity key to noise impact
Big fine for barking dogs in North Wales
‘Back Page’ Sound Bites


June 2021 headlines      Issue number 154

London borough extends noise camera enforcement
Yet more noise camera delays
Conference report: wind turbine noise conference
Stansted approved in bad tempered judgment
Wedding marquee appeal fails due to noise
Shooting range refused at appeal in Wrexham
Florists workshop too noisy says appeal inspector
New attitudes survey for aviation noise
Swindon Council properly dealth with hot tub nuisance
....and Worthing low frequency noise dismissed as tinnitus
IoA launches soundscape competition for schools
Action week chosen to launch survey
EU report notes that action plans achieved little
Buro Happold and Vanguardia merge
Housing near noisy A14 refused at appeal
Sunderland clinches closure order
Council failed to consult EHO on gym noise
Home for special needs turned down on noise grounds
Night flight consultation extended
Aviation noise leads to heart attacks
Iccan mulls research needs for aviation and health
Tookit produced to ease airspace changes
KP acoustics expansion
Epping fine for dog noise
£1,000 fine for breaching notice in Southampton
... and £600 too

May 2021 headlines

EHO training suffers, noise staff diverted due to Covid

Huge European study ponders direction of future action

Den Brook veteran Mike Hulme dies

Hounslow misunderstood need to ‘witness’ nuisance

Heat pumps highlighted in future homes plans

Wind farm standards that actually work?

Batsworthy wind turbine ‘compliance’ questioned

Noise Action Week returns 24th-29th May

Questions in Parliament: aviation and agent of change

Noise concerns sinks plans for 28,000 pheasants

Pods refused against advice by officers

Stop Stansted Expansion to become Stansted Airport Watch

Built environment vision

Man fined for unacceptable behaviour towards neighbours

Winners and losers as noise climate changes

Noisy festivals can impact nesting birds

Disrupted sleep linked to increased risk of death,

Noise annoyance prompts two murders

April 2021 headlines

Councils fear surge of complaints as lockdown eases

Unreasonable Elmbridge liable for appeal costs

Noise should be considered in Scottish air policy

Southend airport expansion prompts valuation row

Truly exciting” changes to building standards

Consultation on plans to clip scope of Judicial Reviews

Noise helps sink Suffolk development

Pub appeal lost on noise condition

Permitted development rights expansion confirmed

Noisy neighbour fined in Stroud

Second seizure for noisy Prestwich resident

Heathrow board winds down

Night flight response

Iccan wants to give itself extra powers

CAA report shows effect of lockdown on aviation noise

Uttlesford criticised as Stansted inquiry ends

Headache link to traffic noise

Battersea heliport noise analysed

Silencer for Mosmorron flare tip

New aviation performance based navigation route warning

Southampton airport expansion agreed

Space exploration noise worries IoA

Software switch

March 2021 headlines

Huge noise mapping exercise launched

East Cambridgeshire stung by costs and criticism

Distribution depot refused permission for extended hours

Office for Environmental Protection now in ‘interim’ form

Bristol Airport lodges appeal for expansion

Complainant said noise followed her around

Council Covid bungs fail to prevent councils going bust

CIEH releases latest noise complaints statistics for England

Noisy car Private Bill

FoI reveals overheating and noise conundrum

Noise collapses appeal against 10 homes

Container takeaway refused

ICCAN finds variable aviation noise insulation

Devon wind turbines too noisy

Cotton Farm wind turbine challenge is dismissed

Acoustics apprenticeship to be launched

Crickets affected by traffic noise

Scooter sensor

Longhurst heads Epuk

More on the huge mapping contract (Q&A)


Jan/Feb 2021 headlines

Covid data management has lessons for noise
Mapping data will enable new PHE toolkit
Peterborough mosque seeks amplified call to prayer
North London pub battle on noise and Covid
Flat noise not a council HHSRS problem
Multiple errors quashes live music planning decision
Crawley in double PDR flat noise bat
Health evidence linking noise and death remains weak
Public inquiry into Stansted Airport expansion begins
Environment Bill delayed for third time
Heat pumps bad claims gas users
Consultation on post-Brexit BAT regulation regime
Future homes considers noise and overheating
Noise provisions of future homes standard unpopular
Agency unenforcement revealed by FoI question
Pitfalls associated with UK airspace modernisation
Night flight consultation is extended
Push to improve urban design for new developments
Agent of Change principles sink Wallingford flats
Short term aircraft noise can trigger heart attacks
Heathrow moots cut price community forum
Heathrow wins Supreme Court hearing to allow expansion
Danes compare modelling techniques
Survey reveals UK’s ‘noisiest’ city
Equipment seizure in South Cambridgeshire
Evans leaves RPS to go solo - and barking dogs too!


December 2020 headlines

Huge Birmingham development approved despite EHO objections 
Aberdeen wind operator angers local authority and appeals 
Clay pigeon shooting complaint rejected 
Cotton Farm wind farm complaint dismissed 
High Court tells wind operator to open its books 
Changing traffic levels lead to £39,000 damages 
Night flight tightening ties in Covid improvements 
Possible changes to the night time aviation noise objective 
Geese cause nuisance: abatement notice served 
Noise and deaths evidence remains weak 
Larger UK airports should have local noise forums 
Hacan’s John Stewart to step back 
Stop press: Heathrow expansion go ahead 
Review confirms limited sleep impact due to turbines 
ANC award ceremony takes place virtually due to Covid 
Roadside acoustic camera award reveals more details 
Agency v council regulation void referred to Ombudsman 
Future of urban deliveries include drones 
Competition launched to geolocate by sound 
Art and acoustics mix to create noise barrier 


November 2020 headlines

Cotton Farm wind farm set to kick off again 
Infrasound battle looms for Arecleoch Windfarm 
PGL appeal is lost despite noise concerns 
Short term lets and laminate influence decision 
Harrogate judgment notes Airbnb noise is a breach 
Airbnb acts on party house noise scourge 
Lords debate permitted development rights 
ANC plea to consider noise in planning reforms 
ANC board appointments 
Ultrasound can be heard and annoy 
London Assembly demands less tube noise 
More discontent at noisy exhausts 
Broxbourne struggles to tackle building noise 
Lockdown noise from planes analysed 
Heathrow sets out Covid impact on operations 
Guide to airport expansion 
Prestwich seizure 
Fine for Stevenage noise maker 
Neath fines top £2,000 too 
Firework pressure increases with new regs mooted 
Green space benefits may be monetised 
Bristol student noise patrols continue 
Scottish air quality policy includes noise 
STEM ambassador to encourage future acousticians 


October 2020 headlines

Agent of Change fail leads to council payout 
Police Commissioner pays for noise ‘cameras’ 
Pavement drinking licenses made more permanent 
Experts warn Covid-legislation unenforceable 
Greenwich forced to apologise for noise and planning breach 
Covid lifts environmental fears up 
‘Fantasy’ court challenge at Heathrow begins 
Phil Hankin dies 
£10m Noise mapping contract up for grabs 
Shields to lead ANC  
Construction advice reveals noise staff diverted to Covid duties  
£1.3m for research 
Quiet track fastenings abandoned 
In Parliament: Noise cameras for “Rutland TT circuit” 
Inspire survives Brexit shake up 
Affordable housing rejected due to bus horn tests 
Heliport operating hours curtained at appeal 
Huge Lakenheath challenge on noisy school fails 
More details emerge on permitted development 
Mosmorran flaring ‘din’ 
Rescue dogs land Fenland resident in court 
Television noise prompts fines 
Yet another probe on aircraft noise and health 
Some evidence of noise and obesity link 
Noise affects sleep patterns of magpies 
Study of one million does suggest heart impacts 
No infrasound effect found by German Environment Agency 


Aug Sept 2020 headlines


New roads programme slashes noise commitments

Government is boasting that it will spend £27bn on new roads - but in its new five year investment strategy it has removed the ring-fenced £75m intended to reduce noise. Noise important areas have been removed from target setting and household targets deferred to 2025.

Heat pump noise sinks New Forest development

A detached house in the New Forest has been refused planning permission due to heat pump noise.

Another midi-turbine causes long term headache

A turbine in Northern Ireland is the subject of a long running dispute that has dragged in councils, consultants and the courts. A resident has even used the Judicial Review process in a bid to force Mid Ulster council to silence the turbine.

Deeds of easement rejected at The Stables

A novel ‘deed of easement’ intended to prevent future occupants of housing near a music venue has been rejected by a planning inspector.

PDR ‘disgraceful’

RIBA President, Alan Jones, said: “The extension of this policy is truly disgraceful. There is no evidence that the planning system is to blame for the shortage of housing, and plenty to suggest that leaving local communities powerless in the face of developers seeking short-term returns will lead to poor results.

Permitted development rights challenge

A challenge has been made to government plans to further extend permitted development rights which reduce the need for planning permission. The changes come within a new consultation on updating the planning system.

PDR in Parliament

Permitted development rights relaxation has prompted questions of the Government in the House of Lords.

Housing near Cornish mine rejected

Housing near the South Crofty tin mine in Cornwall has been rejected at appeal as future residents’ complaints could constrain activity at the mine.

Noise mapping: Round 4 - could do better

Previous rounds of noise mapping were of limited use - but a future round could include useful and exciting functionality, a report concludes.

Population is bothered by noise

A large government travel attitudes survey suggests many are bothered by noise.

Higher trucks speeds not to blame for increase

A higher speed limit for trucks appears not to have made much difference to noise - but the study does reveal an ever-increasing impact from roads.

Welsh air policy impacts noise

Wales has finalised its air quality policy which contains much about noise. Wales joins up its air and noise policy through its integrated wellbeing policies.

City Airport pauses expansion

Expansion work at London City Airport has been paused as a result of lockdown restrictions and their impact on travel demand.

While Gatwick expansion continues....

Despite closure of one of its two terminals and a slump in traffic and profits, Gatwick Airport says it is continuing plans for expansion.

Bristol still seeks expansion

Bristol Airport is appealing against the council’s planning refusal for its expansion plans.

Salford offices rejected at appeal due to industrial noise

Sealed windows will not solve noise problems for proposed office to residential conversion in Salford, says a planning inspector.

More housing nuisance

The Housing Ombudsman’s annual report reveals increased noise nuisance.

Westminster cracks down on ‘pop up’ clubs

Westminster City Council has been tackling a rise in illegal, noisy, crowded parties and ‘pop up nightclubs’ across the capital, a trend that they believe will continue until licensed premises and nightclubs can reopen.

Airbnb tightens party house rules

Covid has finally led to tight restrictions on noisy parties in Airbnb properties. There have been growing complaints against use of short term let properties as party houses - an issue that has grown since pubs and clubs have been shut due to Covid lockdown.

Aviation impacts are badly handled, says Iccan

The way that aviation noise impacts are assessed, managed and mitigated is inconsistent and at times non-existent. As aviation starts to recover, noise management must be improved if the industry is going to have a sustainable future.

Protesters urge government to consider noise in aviation recovery policy

Airport campaigners have written to aviation minister, Kelly Tolhurst, asking her to provide details of the government’s intentions about policies on aircraft noise its aviation recovery plan post Covid.

Road noise linked to obesity risk

UK researchers believe road noise can increase the risk of weight gain.

Gatcom refuses to engage with CPRE

The Gatwick consultative committee (Gatcom) has refused to let CPRE sit on the committee.

New ANC guide on room sound

The Association of Noise Consultants (ANC) has produced a new document, offering guidance on the appropriate methods of measuring sound within a building.

Drone noise online

Quiet Drones conference will be held online on Monday 19th to Wednesday 21th October 2020

Noise loses out to economic imperatives

Plans for a new block of 203 apartments to be built in Newtown In Birmingham have been approved despite concerns being raised over potential noise levels from the surrounding area.

Infrasound from turbines ruled out in Finnish study

Finnish researchers have carried out a questionnaire study, with sound measurements, and provocation experiments conducted to consider infrasound from wind turbines.

Covid cuts ‘seismic’ noise from humans

There has been a 50% cut in seismic noise during the covid lockdown, say Aberdeen researchers.

Heathrow Covid quietening measured by consultant

Noise Consultants Ltd has assessed the impact of covid restrictions on noise round Heathrow Airport.

Noisy turbine re-consented with tough conditions

A small turbine with a large planning and noise nuisance history has been granted retrospective planning permission - with strong conditions.

Epuk annual conference

Environmental Protection UK has now finalised the speakers for its annual conference which includes noise.

Bracknell car wash refused

A car wash has been refused permission on noise grounds.


July 2020 headlines

Dog kennels set for rejection

Planners are set to reject a planning application for dog kennels in Derbyshire.

Noise fears for large Birmingham block

EHOs have recommended refusal of a huge 203-flats development in Birmingham on noise grounds. Economic arguments have trumped ‘agent of change fears’.

Night noise trials halted

Central Government has stopped night time noise flight trials.

Wandsworth joins Heathrow fight

Following Heathrow’s announcement of its challenge to consent for a third runway, Wandsworth Council has joined other councils to fight the expansion fight in the Supreme Courts.

Stansted appeal to go ahead too

Stansted - like Heathrow - is to appeal a judgment preventing expansion.

Environmental progress omits noise

An annual progress report on environmental progress has been released alongside indicators - omitting noise. They are intended to measure progress of the 25 year Environment Plan.

Pavement licences: draft guidance

Government has issued draft guidance to accompany pavement licensing proposals introduced in the Business and Planning Bill rushed through to mitigate Covid.

Wandsworth secures pavement drinking under covid relaxations

Wandsworth Council secures al-fresco green light for Northcote Road’s pubs, bars and restaurants in Battersea. It has received approval to close the road.

Relaxation of construction working hours too

A second set of guidance on Extension of construction working hours is contained in the Business and Planning Bill .It allows extension of times that building can be carried out to make up lost time due to Covid restrictions.

Property tribunal mulls flat noise

Noise and nuisance has featured highly in a leasehold action against a flat owner.

Cambridge escapes sanction for river noise

The local authority Ombudsman believes Cambridge City Council acted correctly following a row between rowers and the operator of a generator.

Bristol criticised

Record keeping at Bristol City Council has been criticised by the local authority Ombudsman.

CPRE warns against planning relaxations

Boris Johnson’s advisor Dominic Cummings is understood to be behind the push to relax planning laws.

Article 4 directions in Birmingham preserve planning safeguards

Landlords in most of Birmingham who want to convert a property into a HMO will now have to apply for planning permission to do so across the city.

Eviction ban prevents nuisance enforcement

A landlords’ lobby group warn the continuing ban on evicting tenants makes it impossible to enforce nuisance provisions against rowdy tenants.

Noise camera trial problems

A minister has hinted that there may be problems with trials of roadside noise cameras. Highways England has been carrying out the trials to catch motorists with modified loud exhausts but has refused to release results.

Bad silencers

Norfolk Police checks in Norwich revealed that silencer problems - including deliberate alteration to make it noisier - 25 out of 63 vehicle defect offences.

Fiumicelli to Vanguardia

Dani Fiumicelli has left Temple to join Vanguardia as a technical director providing to support continued growth of the environment team.

Noise fears near Tata Steel site stops housing

Plans for 163 homes have failed at appeal due to noise concerns from the underused Tata steelworks in Corby.

Bats affected by road noise

Traffic noise was found to affect the behaviour of bats in a playback experiment.

Noise affects heart pumping

High occupational and night time noise can affect the ‘stroke volume’ - the amount of blood pumped each time the heart beats. Stroke volume decreases on non working days for those subjected to high noise at work, or at night.

Aviation respite due to Covid is valued

Almost 3,500 people took part in a survey organised by the No 3rd Runway Coalition.

Iccan releases one year reflections

The UK’s Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise (ICCAN) has added its voice to calls to preserve the peace and quiet from planes due to the Covid crisis virtually halting flights.

HMO refused on air quality grounds

Reading Council has refused an 8-bed house of multiple occupation on air quality and noise grounds. Work is already underway at the former guest house.

Conflicting health results for road traffic noise

A long term large Danish study has thrown up contradictory results on road traffic noise, finding no health impact due to living near busy roads contrary to received wisdom.

Day nursery refused at appeal

Noise from children has led to a rejection of a day nursery for children in Sunderland.

New guidance launched for acoustics apprenticeship

The group behind a pioneering apprenticeship in acoustics has brought together the latest information, to signpost potential employers and candidates to the programme.

Noise and air quality study for Oxford

Researchers at the University of Birmingham and University of Oxford have secured £207,000 funding from the Natural Environment Research Council to investigate the impacts of COVID-19 related public health measures upon air and noise quality in Oxford.

Natural England queries noise damage of airport

Natural England is demanding further information on the noise impact of expansion proposals for Leeds Bradford airport. Leeds council is currently considering the planning application.

Electric strimmers promise quieter working

Network Rail is trialing new battery-powered hedge trimmers and strimmers that are quieter than their petrol-powered counterparts.  

June  2020 Issue 143Noise Bulletin: adapting to the virus

No sealed prison for Bridgend

A planning inspector has refused a development that required sealed windows to mitigate noise. The council described it as an ‘acoustic prison’

Abatement notice took too long to serve

Bromley Council was has been told to apologise over its handling of a complaint about delivery noise at a local shop. 

Highways survey

Highways England is to pay for a survey of existing and future road noise levels. 

Noise mapping data repackaged

Defra noise mapping data has been repackaged by Noise Consultants ltd. 

Home schooling

The ANC and IoA have put together a home schooling resources with lesson plans and ideas for children and students. 

Covid impact revealed by IoA survey

An IoA survey has revealed the impact of the virus on acousticians in the UK. 

Wales approach welcomed

The Welsh Branch of the IoA has welcomed Welsh Government plans to update its TAN planning guidance (Noise Bulletin March p10). The TAN places far more emphasis on soundscapes than hitherto.

24-hour building possible for one year

Builders have been allowed temporary extensions to working hours - up to 24 hours - to facilitate safe working and allow tasks to be completed where social distancing can be challenging. 

Sheffield protects noise complainant

Sheffield City Council has successfully fought off an attempt to make it reveal who made a noise complaint. 

Etsu arguments scupper already-built windfarm

The Irish High Court has overturned planning permission for the Bear na Gaoithe wind farm in County Cork.

Abatement notice valid says High Court

A noise abatement notice can be served on an individual suffering from Tourette’s.

Scout camp appeal

Housing can be built next to a scout campsite in Mill Hill, North London.

Stables back to appeal on deed of easement

Developers have challenged a decision to require a ‘deed of easement’ for future occupants for housing next to the Milton Keynes The Stables music venue.

Waste firm fails to get extended hours

A waste firm has failed in its appeal to get extended hours at its Meriden works.

Aviation rethink on noise, says ICCAN

The UK’s Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise (ICCAN) is calling on the government to make managing noise a key priority when aviation levels start to recover following the Covid-19 pandemic.

Tip height pressure to test the courts

Scotland Against Spin has published legal advice on the issue of repowering of wind turbines. Replacing smaller turbines with larger ones creates obvious changes in the sound landscape and increased risk of amplitude modulation problems.

Sepa loses patience on Mosmorran flaring

Sepa is to prosecute Exxon Mobil for continued flaring at its Scottish Mosmorran petrochems plant. The flaring has caused complaints both on air quality and noise grounds.


May 2020 Issue 142 headlines

Highways England. Underspend. Underachieve.
Highways England’s first five year plan appears to have failed spectacularly - and funding has been cut for its new five year plan 
High Court rules on flat noise
A hotly fought High Court battle has been given leave to continue. 
Noise concerns over school use for bungalow
Council officers have had their view overridden concerning plans for a 65-child nursery being squeezed into a suburban bungalow near Blackpool. 
Ombudsman: Calderdale to apologise with £150 fine
Calderdale Council has come a cropper due to noise from church bells. 
South Somerset accused of ‘manipulating’ sound readings
Pressure washer noise from a garage has landed a council in front of the Ombudsman - but no blame was attached. 
Ombudsman endorses TfL efforts on noise
A couple complained of noise from an underground line. They said they had not heard trains for many years but suddenly the trains got louder 
Call for Covid calm measurements
The Covid: The quiet project - call for measurements to assess virus changes in traffic 
Heat pump concerns aired for future homes
The Association of Noise Consultants (ANC) warns on heat pumps in future homes standard 
Sleep affected by wind turbines
Wind turbine noise found to affect sleep, say Swedish researchers 
Chronic noise exposure causes oxidative DNA damage in mice 
Chronic noise exposure causes oxidative DNA damage in mice, say researchers 
Wind turbine ‘noise budget’ review allowed
The Scottish Court of Session has allowed a review of ‘noise budgets’ for wind farms. 
Fife sets out detailed noise policy
Fife Council has set ut detailed noise policy in a bid to reduce developer conflicts. 
Colchester asks residents to be thoughtful
From loud music and noisy power tools, to banging doors and late-night TV, Colchester Borough Council is seeing a big increase in calls from residents 
Stables goes to appeal on homeowner easement requirements
The controversial housing near the Milton Keynes Stable venue has gone to appeal. 
Appeal inspector confirms rejection of crematorium on tranquility grounds
A proposed crematorium in Nesscliffe, Shropshire has been defeated at appeal. 
Bats find road traffic noise 'irritating'
Road traffic noise causes bat activity to decrease by about two thirds and suggests that the negative effects could be felt considerable distances from the source. 
NAS covid plea
The Noise Abatement Society (NAS) is one of a number of charities vulnerable to the lockdown. 
Covid ‘experiment’
The Covid lockdown is proving to be a useful experiment, says an academic 
Noise decreases
A European report released last month suggests an initial decrease in noise exposure across Europe may have reversed in recent years. 
Sound Bite column
So how do you simulate errr ... a turd? 
Goodbye and thanks to Lis and Lisa
Big thanks to our feature writers more

April 2020 Issue 141 headlines

Covid plea

Consultants, local authorities and pressure groups are all affected by the pandemic with many working from home and/or furloughed. Some organisations have asked us not to send in paper copies.
Noise Bulletin is assessing how best to respond to this – and readers’ home working – and the best option may be to handle news online for the foreseeable future.
Could readers please let me have their email address so we can make this happen!

Covid confounds surveys

Consultants have rushed out guidance to cope with the unprecedented silence resulting from the pandemic shutdown.

Councils set out virus policies

Councils are offering advice to residents during the pandemic.

CRTN update

An IoA meeting on the future of road and rail noise modelling has heard that current guidance is out of date – by up to 50 years.

Improvement slows down

A European report released last month suggests an initial decrease in noise exposure across Europe may have reversed in recent years.

Complaints rise

Data from a online noise app used by some local authorities suggests a rise in nuisance complaints.

Annoyance compared

Noise annoyance has been compared between shanty towns in Africa and western housing in Switzerland. The results are surprising.

Action plan analysis

Noise action plans in Europe have been analysed up to April 2019, and the type of measures implemented to reduce environmental noise.

Warning on drone liability

A barrister has warned that local authorities risk becoming airspace planners.

Aviation noise a rental hazard?

Consultant Mike Stigwood argues that aviation noise could be a legal risk to landlords beneath noisy flightpaths

Noise-enabled street cameras

Smart cameras are being installed in Islington for enforcing low emission strategies – but have a noise capability.

Noise makes you fat

Noise can lead to pregnant women gaining excess weight.

Cruising ban extension

A ground-breaking injunction banning noisy car cruising in the Black Country has been extended

Dogs and cockerels fined in Wales

Owners of crowing cockerels and a noisy dog both fined for failing to deal with noise disturbance issues

Heathrow suspends

Heathrow has suspended work on a 3rd runway until its future becomes clearer. That means that the short consultation planned for expansion has been postponed.

Gateshead seizure

A Gateshead woman has had her noise making equipment seized because of the nuisance she was causing to her neighbours.

Virus changes noise landscape

The unwelcome spread of coronavirus has given an unexpected glimpse into what a quieter life might be like. Lisa Russell looks at some of the changes being experienced.


March 2020 Issue 140 headlines

When is a rug is not a carpet?

Laminate flooring has prompted a convoluted legal challenge between a landlord and lessees.

Noise complaints rise

Noise complaints have risen by 9% according to the latest CIEH noise survey. Statistics were last updated three years ago and the rise comes despite a severe reduction in noise officers due to austerity.

Heathrow loses legal challenge

The planned expansion of Heathrow has stalled following a court warning.

Crawley wins sealed appeal

A developer has lost an appeal against flats refused by Crawley council due to noise from a nearby nightclub. Crawley has a track record of considering noise in its planning policies.

Sealed windows also sink Glasgow flats

Plans to squeeze in 53 flats near a cement works in Bishopbriggs near Glasgow has been rejected at appeal.

Pumps and fans considered by IoA

The Institute of Acoustics has asked Government to consider internal noise limits in the Future Home Standards currently under consultation.

225,000 wind claim

Three residents have reportedly received £225,000 damages in an out of court settlement for the impacts of living near a noisy wind farm in Ireland.

No party here

Liverpool City Council has refused a party house due to excess noise.

Iphone enhancement criticised

A prosecution has succeeded based on Iphone recordings of barking from a kennels. The kennel owner was ordered to pay £3,000 compensation and £93,000 in legal bills.

Little progress despite directive provisions

The European Environment Agency has updated its huge summary noise report and noted that despite decades of European noise policy, exposure remains high.

Irish wind row

Consultants have further slammed the Irish Government for what it sees as poorly worded wind turbine policy.

Wind backtrack

An effective ban for onshore wind turbines in England has been reversed.

Iccan updates noise attitudes

The Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise (ICCAN) is taking up research from central government in a bid to see if attitudes to aviation noise have changed. Noise attitude research used to be carried out by the DfT.

TAN11 to include air and soundscape

Welsh TAN11 technical noise planning guidance is to be updated to include air quality and soundscapes.

Access traffic doesn’t sink development

A 95-dwelling development has been approved at appeal. The decision is yet another showing that planning inspectors cannot decide whether traffic accessing new developments beside quiet dwellings is important.

HMO Article 4s

Local authorities are increasingly applying for blanket Article 4 directions to require landlords to apply for planning permission if they wish to split houses into houses of multiple occupation.

Health impacts

Investigators at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) have identified a potential mechanism through which long-term exposure to noise leads to inflammation, blood vessel damage, and heart disease.

Aviation research push by ICCAN

Plans are being developed for a new survey to gather definitive evidence about current attitudes to aviation noise and address perceived shortcomings in previous work. Lisa Russell reports.

New-kid-on-the-block iccan appears ready to ruffle feathers

The Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise is a body created to act as an impartial voice on the topic and how it affects communities. Early concerns that it might be a poodle appear to have been unfounded as it tackles tough issues.

More on noise from Germany

Last month we looked at new wind turbine news from a huge German conference, this month Lis Stedman looks at other notable papers.

January/February 2020 Issue 139 headlines

Daventry savaged by Ombudsman

The Local Government Ombudsman has found against Daventry Council for failing to investigate industrial noise. The council must pay relatively large compensation of £3,600 to residents and has been directed to hire an independent consultant.

Stables secures promise of dead of easement

A high profile music venue in Milton Keynes has seen off an attempt to water down noise conditions for a newly built housing estate.

Heathrow D-day

Decision day for Heathrow’s future will be 28th February when the High Court delivers its verdict on continued legal challenges against expansion.

Chichester avoids ice chiller criticism

Chichester has avoided criticism over complaints of a chiller unit used for a seasonal ice rink.

Environment costed in calculator

A calculator has been released to cost noise and other environmental benefits.

ACCON acquired

Air quality and noise consultant ACCON UK ended 2019 becoming become a partner company of the Austrian iC Group.

Research grants rise

Noise research money has risen – although very little is devoted to environmental noise.

Irish wind guidelines disputed

Ireland has released new noise guidelines for wind turbines which are far tighter than previous rules leading to a revolt by consultants.

QC hit and miss on real world impacts

Quota Count (QC) aircraft noise classification bands have been found to be hit and miss.

Stansted rejected

In a surprise decision, Uttlesford District Council has rejected Stansted Airport’s plans for expansion. An appeal inevitable.

Iccan on Sona

Government’s independent noise advisors ICCAN confirm that the impact of aircraft noise has been underestimated.

Wales formally links air with noise

Noise has increasing emphasis in Welsh air quality plans. A new consultation says action should target improvements to air and noise together.

Noise lessons for air quality

Welsh Government releases a useful thinkpiece setting out how noise mapping has lessons for air quality

Overheating guide finalised

Consultants pull together a guide on how to juggle noise and ventilation tensions. Jack Pease looks at the finalised AVO guide.

Draft already used in anger in Durham

The AVO guide is already affecting planning discussions – author Jack Harvie-Clark notes that one decision for 81 houses near the A1 in Alnwick has incorporated the latest thinking.

Much to learn from Germany

Expert gathered in Germany last month to discuss the latest in acoustics news. Lis Stedman reports.


December 2019 Issue 138 headlines

Banning complaints is illegal

Greenwich Council has been told it must drop a s106 clause that bans future residents from complaining about nearby industrial noise.

Gliding club win

Harborough Council has had a decision overturned as it failed to consider noise.

DMRB noise guidance is replaced

Highways England has replaced its Interim Advice Notes and DMRB guidance on noise with LA111 Noise and Vibration, this replaces HD213/11.

Sealed windows rejected in Birmingham

Despite sealed windows being allowed in nearby buildings, an appeal has rejected windows in a office to residential conversion in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter.

Species suffer due to noise

Researchers from Queen’s University Belfast have found noise pollution is threatening the survival of more than 100 different species including amphibians, birds, fish, mammals and reptilians.

Access traffic sinks development

A 38-bed care home in St Andrews has been rejected on noise grounds despite officers saying there’d be no problem. An appeal is expected.

More pressure on Airbnb

Oxford and Edinburgh have ramped up pressure on short term lettings due to noise issues.

Ombudsman complaint mooted for Cotton Farm

Locals are considering a complaint to the local authority ombudsman on council refusal to consider nuisance action against Cotton Farm wind farm near Huntingdon.

Stillbirth link

The ‘largest study to date of air and noise pollution in relation to birth outcomes” has found a link between noise and still birth.

5-yr ban

A Salford man who played loud music through the night replaced seized equipment to carry on making noise.

Crematorium tranquillity critical

Helicopter noise has sunk proposals for a crematorium in Shropshire.

Boiler factory too loud for new housing

Three detached houses have been refused permission by Bradford Council due to proximity to a boiler factory.

School injunction

Noise featured highly in the high profile protests against sex education at a school in Birmingham. Religious groups held noisy protests outside the school arguing the curriculum breached their religious beliefs.

STEM award

Held in October, the John Connell STEM award – sponsored by the ANC and ANV Measurement Systems

Drones threaten future peace

Researchers and governments are starting to look into whether drones could become another widespread source of noise nuisance. Lisa Russell reports. full featre here

Sound sensing discussed

Lis Stedman catches up with an IoA conference held in London on use of technology by way of sensors to monitor noise in cities


November 2019 Issue 137 headlines

Heat pump – no action possible

An Ombudsman judgment has underlined the nuisance potential of heat pumps – and the near impossibility of enforcing action against them.

Appeal cites ProPG ‘good acoustic design’

Good acoustic design – or rather the lack of – has been instrumental in leading to refusal of housing near the busy A49 in Wellington, Herefordshire.

Tourette’s challenge

A woman with Tourette’s Syndrome has challenged a noise abatement notice.

City of London wins Connell award

The Noise Abatement Society’s John Connell awards took place last month in Parliament.

Drone Bill

A bill on drones was introduced into Parliament but failed to become law due to the election shutdown.

Ten year order

A man who was fined more than £12,000 after making his neighbours’ lives a misery by keeping a house full of dogs has also been hit with a Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO).

Rubens buys in

AcSoft Holdings Ltd, which comprises AcSoft, GRAS UK and Svantek UK, has announced that general manager, Paul Rubens, has acquired a 50% interest in the business, making him joint partner alongside founder and managing director, John Shelton.l

Council SPG is disregarded

Planning guidance on noise put together by Scottish local authorities has been rejected by a Scottish planning inspector. The guidance was intended to protect residents from excess noise, but the inspector placed little value on it.

No noise in bill

The Environment Bill failed to become law by the time Parliament was dissolved for an early election.

S106 loophole allows wind extension

Residents have failed to stall the ten year extension of a windfarm near Barrow in Furness.

Prison term

A resident of Church Crookham has been given a suspended prison sentence after repeated antisocial behaviour.

Call to ban noisy fireworks

Pressure is growing at Westminster and Holyrood to restrict public use of fireworks. There are increasing concerns on noise impact, especially on dogs.

Scottish firework action

Restrictions to the use of fireworks on private property across Scotland will be considered by a new review group.

Heathrow challenged from different directions

Heathrow expansion judicial review hearings have begun in the Court of Appeal.

Boris sceptical

Boris Johnson The Prime Minister, Leader of the Conservative Party has told Parliament: “It remains the case that I have lively doubts about the ability of the promoters of that scheme to meet standards on air quality and noise emissions, and we will have to see how the courts adjudicate in that matter.”

Video playlist

The Association of Noise Consultants is showcasing a range of videos, aimed at a school age audience, showing acoustics in action.

Fracking on hold

Prime minister Boris Johnson says there will be a moratorium on fracking in England, citing environmental impacts including noise.

Tranquillity gathers momentum

Tranquillity appears to be on the rise as a material planning issue. Lisa Russell looks at two cases where it has been playing a prominent part.

Perth battle of the codes

A hot topic these days is the battle between new housing and existing noisy developments. Planning inspectors are flexing their muscles, finds Lis Stedman. A recent case in which housing near Perth was refused planning permission at appeal due to industrial noise sets important precedents and significantly clarifies key aspects of relevant standards that have caused some serious misapprehensions (Noise Bulletin October 2019).


October 2019 Issue 136 headlines

Green regs include noise

Government is consulting on changes to ‘green’ building regulations. There is much discussion on overheating due to sealed windows required to avoid noise and air quality issues.

Lawyer loses grinding toilet Airbnb case

A lawyer has lost a private prosecution against noise from a toilet macerator pump in an Airbnb flat above.

Design manual

Government has released a ‘design manual’ for new homes. Noise is mentioned.

More simplification

A further round of planning ‘simplification’ is promised even as the building codes are being beefed up to boost climate resilience (see news, left).

PDR disaster

New rights to allow two-storey upwards extensions on family homes without planning permission will “compound the problem” of low quality housing created under previous extensions to permitted development rights, the RTPI says.

Year of sound

The International Comm-ission for Acoustics has decided to declare the Year 2020 as the International Year of Sound (IYS 2020).

Technician standard set out by ANC

A standard for an acoustics technician apprenticeship has been set out.

Industry noise scuppers housing

Housing near Perth has been refused at appeal due to industrial noise

Bunds barred

Noise bunds have been rejected for a new dwelling near the busy A23 road in West Sussex.

Extractor fan prosecution

Preston City Council has successfully prosecuted a food business for non-compliance with a noise abatement notice.

City airport objection

The London Assembly environment committee has objected to plans to expand London City Airport.

Big enough

Under the banner Gatwick’s Big Enough, community groups around Gatwick have joined forces with Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign to challenge the airport’s Master Plan expansion proposals.

Party house loses appeal

Noise has played a large part in a party house owner losing an enforcement appeal.

Superquiet A350s cut noise nuisance

Noise monitoring suggests that new Airbus A350s are generally (but not always) quieter than existing planes.

NI noise

Northern Ireland continues to monitor noise complaints received by local authorities. Defra no longer collects information from English local authorities.

NI noise

Northern Ireland continues to monitor noise complaints received by local authorities. Defra no longer collects information from English local authorities.

Guidance released for airports

Procedural guidance for noise-related operating restrictions at major airports has been published. It clarifies the requirements of the noise-related operating restrictions regulations of 2018.

Nuns win tranquillity arguments

80 homes in Kent have been refused at appeal with tranquillity at the heart of arguments.

Noisy gate leads to £23,000 costs

Arun District Council has been successful in a case brought before magistrates resulting in significant costs being recovered.

Strokes not linked to wind turbines

Nurses have been studied in Denmark and found to have no increased risk of strokes if they live near wind turbines.

Torridge torment

Andrew Watts from Milton Damerel appeared before Magistrates charged with failing to comply with a noise abatement notice in respect of a statutory nuisance.

Costly dogs

Two dog owners in York were ordered to pay a total of £2421.74 by York Magistrates on 7 May after failing to comply with the conditions of a noise abatement notice.

SONA challenged at Heathrow

Residents living within earshot of Heathrow Airport’s planned third runway are challenging the use of the 2014 Survey of Noise Attitudes to assess annoyance, citing flaws in its approach. Lisa Russell reports.

Mapping continues in Scotland

Mapping may have dwindled to little more than software-tweaking in England however it is being taken more seriously in Scotland, finds Lis Stedman. Scotland’s third round of noise mapping has identified a hopeful number of potential new noise management areas (NMAs) and quiet areas (QAs), though the previous two rounds suggest that the stringent requirements for designation mean that very few may make it through the process to completion. Maps for Round three were produced by Jacobs consultants.


August/September 2019 Issue 135 headlines

Policy guidance updated

Planning policy guidance on noise has been beefed up. A key change focuses on ‘agent of change’ intended to protect existing noisy businesses from complaints from new residents.

Edinburgh wins Airbnb enforcement

Short term lets are a material change of use, a Scottish planning inspector has confirmed.

Iphone evidence

A private prosecution has succeeded against a kennels despite the complainant living 700m away.

Stiffness effect

Germans studied 200 people in high and low aircraft noise areas.

Generator fine

A convenience store owner has been prosecuted over excessive noise from generator

Cambridge breach

A persistent noisy neighbour has been found guilty of breaching a noise abatement notice, issued by Cambridge City Council, three times in less than five months.

Stigwood blasts ‘agent’ provisions

Consultant Mike Stigwood believes new agent of change provisions are misleading and ambiguous.

Pilots welcome aviation clarification

Agent of change has been spelt out as it affects airfields.

Bath party house overturned

Planners are taking an increasingly tough line against party houses and Airbnb-style short term lets.

Defra funding

The 2019 spending review suggests a headline 3.3% local authority budget – but nearly all of this is taken up by social care. Defra gets a similar rise – but of course the likely election means the spending review is essentially irrelevant.

HMO refused by committee

Brighton is also seeing a backlash against HMOs and short term ‘party house’ applications. The council has issued Article 4 directions to restrict development.

BS 4142 amended

The all-important BS 4142 has been amended. It is used for assessing industrial and commercial noise and widely used (and misused!) for planning.

Prison term

A resident of Church Crookham has been given a suspended prison sentence after repeated antisocial behaviour.

Iccan sets out tough response

The newly formed Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise (ICCAN) has responded to the Government’s Aviation 2050 policy consultation. ICCAN appears to be taking a tough line – but there is no long term commitment to fund the Commission beyond two years.

London Assembly restates airport opposition

The London Assembly has once again rejected arguments for expanding Heathrow. It has also criticised new plans to expand London City Airport.

Sleep conflict

Leaked reports in The Times newspaper suggests Government is considering adopting a recommendation for seven hours sleep to improve health.

ASB swamped by noise in Leeds

Noise complaints are swamping Leeds City Council’s anti social behaviour service.

Eye housing rejected on noise grounds

14 homes in Eye, near Peterborough, have been rejected on noise grounds at appeal.

Rutland railway noise sinks development

Noise from an adjacent railway is unacceptable, an appeal inspector says.

Speaker seizure

Commercial speakers have been seized from a home in Rochdale after months of non-stop partying kept neighbours awake.

Private nuisance

A private nuisance action is being considered against an operator of controversial wind turbines in Scotland.
Rosie Milne successfully obtained an abatement notice against the West Knock Farm trio of turbines in Aberdeenshire (Noise Bulletin March p6). Now she may take forward a private nuisance action to allow damages to be claimed.

Barking bad

Owners of a Jack Russell dog who barked 1,350 times in 45 minutes have been fined almost £3,000 following complaints from a neighbour.

Wind turbine noise discussed

Onshore wind turbines may have lost their subsidies but noise arguments rumble on, the Lisbon conference found
Proceedings and further information

World experts gather for Internoise

Hundreds of papers were presented at the Internoise 2019 conference in Madrid. Lisa Russell reports on a selection of them.Papers can be found online, grouped into sections, at:


July 2019 Issue 134 headlines

English mapping quest concludes

Conclusions have been published following consultation on England’s Round 3 noise maps. Strategic noise mapping is required under the EU noise directive.

Easement solution questioned by Stigwood

Consultant Mike Stigwood has warned that easements may not be the solution to ‘agent of change’ issues where new housing is put next to existing noisy businesses.

ANC awards

Accon UK’s Graham Parry has become president of the Association of Noise Consultants. Parry is also vice president of the IoA.

SONA update?

MP Ruth Cadbury has asked in Parliament what plans there are to survey local communities on the effect on quality of life of aircraft noise below 51 dB LAeq.

London city

London City Airport is seeking to expand in its new masterplan.

Soundscapes option for highways

Soundscapes are becoming increasingly important in planning, an IoA/Noise Abatement Society conference heard last month.

Heat pump warning from UK noise body

The UK Noise Association has added its voice to fears that the push towards cutting CO2 might lead to noise problems.

400 homes rejected near M1

Ministers have backed an appeal refusal for 400 homes in Northants.

Lisbon conference tackles turbine noise

Experts gathered last month in Lisbon to discuss wind turbine noise.

Drone standards set out by Europe

Europe has set out drone standards and how noise can be tested.

Big dog fine

Two Llandysul dog owners have been ordered to pay over £3,000 for failing to control their dogs’ barking.

Even bigger dog fine

A man who made his neighbours’ lives a misery by keeping a house full of dogs has been fined almost £10,000 for failing to comply with a noise abatement notice.

Noise exposure set to rise

EU predictions suggest noise will rise in the future – despite attempts to bear down on it through noise mapping and action planning. Aviation is the only sector to reduce noise exposure by 2030 despite growth in volumes.

Next noise... the combined Aug/Sept edition which will appear in a few weeks time

Sleeping at home

French researchers have looked at the impact of aviation noise on heart rate during sleep.

‘Noise bending wall’ trialled for railways

Government claims it is funding £7.8m of new ideas for rail projects.

Irish councils finally get planning guidance

Irish local authorities now have guidance on how to deal with noise and planning.

Cameras to cut vehicle noise

Excessively noisy vehicles appear to be able to move around with impunity – but not for much longer. Jack Pease reviews an interesting research report.

Heathrow masterplan gives detail

We’ve heard about flightpaths, we’ve heard about the National Policy Statement, now we have far more local detail from Heathrow in its new masterplan. Lis Stedman ploughs through it.

June 2019 Issue 133 headlines

ICCAN launches with tough talk

The aviation noise watchdog has issued its first corporate strategy which includes a promise to gain confidence of protesters and do new research.

Appeal again

Protesters are seeking to appeal the rejection of a judicial review into expansion of Heathrow (Noise Bulletin May p1). They claim the court adopted too narrow a view on irrationality.

Guns rejected in ‘worst authority’ Wrexham

Councillors have refused retrospective planning permission for a firing range near Wrexham

10 homes rejected on car noise

Car traffic from 10 bungalows would cause noise and disturbance for existing residents and a scheme has been refused at planning appeal.

Cars also sink old folks’ home

Plans for a retirement home have foundered at appeal partly due to noise from cars accessing the property. The 39-unit former hotel is in Alveston in Derbyshire.

Luton airport seeks to formalise breaches

Luton Airport is seeking to relax its noise cap having breached its planning conditions.

Noise unimportant?

Noise has appeared way down a list of environmental problems in a new Northern Ireland report.

CIEH survey

CIEH has restarted its annual noise survey. It has adopted a new online questionnaire format for local authorities.

Short term letting under scrutiny

Scottish Government is consulting on greater controls on short term Airbnb-style short term holiday lets. Authorities are also bearing down on letting.

Airbnb clampdown in London?

The London mayor is calling for a registration system to enforce short-term letting law.

Flaring flare-up

Exxon Mobil’s Mossmorran petrochemical plant in Fife has been carrying out ‘emergency’ flaring.

Echo win

Echo Barrier, based in Bury St Edmunds, was selected by judges for second place in the Equipment Supplier of the Year category of the 2019 Construction News Specialists Awards.

Acoustics contributes to UK economy

IoA’s annual conference Acoustics 2019 was told that acoustics contributes £4.6bn to the UK economy.

PDR loophole defined in Crawley

Two appeals have been dismissed based on definitions of what constitutes commercial premise noise.

Noise added to indicators

Last minute changes to a proposed national indicator have seen noise added to the list. Early drafts had omitted noise from the list which is intended to gauge environmental progress.

Shopkeeper fine

A shopkeeper who disturbed his neighbours’ peace and quiet by allowing his dogs to bark excessively has been found guilty of causing noise nuisance.

COPA slip up

Broxbourne Council has been rapped for failing to properly control construction noise.

Building noise

Melton Borough Council has successfully prosecuted a resident of Melton Mowbray for breaching a Control of Pollution Act Notice that restricted works to his property to certain times and days.

Supersonic impact on UK

The rise of supersonic aircraft will disproportionately affect residents near London.

Mixed results for background plane noise

The CAA has studied the influence of background noise on noise annoyance.

Monitoring tweaks to improve accuracy

Guidance has been issued in a bid to try and better match predicted plane noise levels and monitoring near airports.

1.6m affected

Greenpeace analysis of documents looking at potential flight paths for the new runway at Heathrow suggests that 1.6m Londoners could face as many 47 noisy flights every hour.

Oldham omission

Oldham Council has been criticised by the local authority ombudsman for failing to properly deal with noise from a shared living unit.

Deeds ease music woes

Music venues and their advisers are optimistic that ‘deeds of easement’ could offer a degree protection from noise complaints when new homes are built within earshot. Lisa Russell reports. full feature here

Child sensitivity

Korean researchers have looked at the impact of noise on mental health of children.

Prison term

A noisy neighbour from Kettering has been one of the first offenders in the country to be handed a suspended prison sentence for noise nuisance.

Latest on aviation noise and health

In the latest of a clutch of useful-looking aviation reports. CAA analyses the latest aviation noise and health research.

May 2019 Issue 132 headlines

MK ‘deed of easement’ fudge

A housing development near a music venue in Milton Keynes has been approved despite fears of future noise complaints.

Fife gets tough on sealed windows

Fife Council has taken a stand against the growing trend to require sealed windows to cope with urban noise. (contrast this with Milton Keynes’ acceptance of windows ‘sealed in perpetuity’ above).

Challenge fails

A legal challenge to the Airports National Policy Statement has failed.

PSPOs more popular

Councils are making increasing use of Public Space Protection Orders to control noise, nuisance and antisocial behaviour.

Haulage yard noise not assessed

A developer of ten homes in Maulden, Beds, appealed against refusal of planning permission due to noise from a nearby haulage yard.

Barnsley bark

A dog owner from Barnsley has been fined £1088 for a barking dog.

Skate park prevents new home

Proximity to a skate park has led to rejection of a new house in Cornwall.

Inspector rejects questioning headroom

Noise was confirmed as a key reason for refusing an application for a Hertfordshire quarry – confirmed both at appeal and by the Secretary of State after the application was called in.

Chiller units rejected following complaints

Retrospective planning permission for externally mounted chiller units on a convenience store in Bedford has been rejected on noise grounds.

Noise costs

A study has set out the costs of not implementing European environmental laws such as on noise and air quality.

35dBA night limit

Planners have rejected taller wind turbines in Perth.

Lakenheath fails

A challenge has failed against Suffolk Council’s decision to build a school near the noisy Lakenheath.

Noise Relief?

Aviation pressure group Hacan has released a report challenging the aviation industry to take action to improve the noise climate for local communities. Noise Relief outlines practical measures which could be taken to achieve this.

Anti social behaviour issues

Noise is included in a major report into anti social behaviour.

ICCAN technical commissioner sought

The Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise (ICCAN) is seeking a two day-a-month noise advisor.

Brighton HMO: two too many

Two extra flats within an existing HMO (house of multiple occupation) are sufficient to cause unacceptable additional noise, a planning inspector says.

Report highlights noise equity gap

A European report on environmental equity has exposed weaknesses in the Noise Directive.

Infrasound petition

A petition is underway to ban new wind turbines until the “infrasound issue” has been resolved.

Thurrock man fined

A Purfleet has been prosecuted and fined.

Heathrow challenge rejected

Aviation is dominating the news and so dominates pages in this month’s Noise Bulletin! Attempts to challenge Heathrow’s third runway have failed. Protest groups have lost their Judicial Review of the Airports National Policy Statement which paves the way for a third runway at Heathrow.

Fleet of aviation reports released

l An investigation into the influence of background ambient noise levels on attitudes to aircraft noise (CAP 1767)
l Emerging Aircraft Technologies and their potential noise impacts
CAP 1766
l Noise Impact Survey Summary of Responses (CAP 1748)

April 2019 Issue 131  headlines

Jobs need sinks Sepa permit

Scottish Government has overturned an attempt by Sepa to protect residents from noisy flaring at the Ineos plant in Grangemouth.

PDR ploughs on

Permitted development rights are being further extended – albeit with a scrutiny of amenity issues.

Bradford to fine noisy cars

Bradford Council has introduced powers to fine noisy cars.

It has agreed a public space protection order with wide ranging powers to stop anti social use of vehicles and noise from car stereo systems. The order is far wider in scope than orders used elsewhere that focus on car cruising, as seen in the West Midlands and Essex (Noise Bulletin July 2018 p5).

Active noise works

Electronic noise ‘blocking’ can work as well as actual glazing, researchers claim.

Firework inquiry

Westminster Parliament is to launch an inquiry into fireworks. Last month Scottish Government launched a consultation along similar lines (Noise Bulletin March p4).

Turbine petition

A petition has been launched on wind turbines..

Heathrow arguments aired

Lawyers representing a coalition of local authorities opposed to Heathrow expansion have been in the High Court challenging the Government’s Airport National Policy Statement backing Heathrow expansion and demanding it be quashed.

Post-Brexit aviation noise debated

Aviation regulations for a possible Brexit have been discussed in Parliament.

Stansted to challenge ‘local’ consent

Stop Stansted Expansion is to commence legal proceedings to challenge the decision by communities secretary James Brokenshire not to intervene in the decision by Uttlesford District Council to approve the expansion of Stansted Airport to 43 million passengers per annum (mppa).

Homes Act

The new Homes Act updates housing hazard regulations – noise is one of the 29 “things” that can form a hazard.

Award and conference

The Association of Noise Consultants awards are open for 2019.

Sealed windows rejected

Sealed windows have been rejected at appeal near the A23 trunk road near Crawley.

Roof terrace ‘unlawful’ due to noise fears

A request to put a terrace onto the roof of an attached garage has prompted a huge row over transmitted noise.

Overheating explored

A paper sets out how a guide to overheating and acoustics can be applied in new developments.

Sandwich site ok

261 homes sandwiched in between the M61 and M6 motorways in Bamber Bridge have been allowed at appeal.

Heat pumps store up problems

A huge surge in the installation of air source heat pumps is set to follow from a new government edict banning gas boilers from 2025. Lisa Russell reports. There is a short sentence in last month’s government Spring Statement that on the face of it has nothing to do with noise – but is raising concerns about the potential for an increase in complaints in a few years’ time.

Night vibes from railways

Two field studies (one in Poland and one in the Netherlands) with 233 valid respondents in total, and three laboratory studies in Sweden with a total of 59 subjects over 350 person-nights were performed in a study of rail based sleep disturbance.

Heathrow challenge commences

When Heathrow was told it could expand with a third runway, dissenters pointed out the decision would face legal challenge. Lis Stedman witnesses the start

March 2019 Issue 130  headlines

Noise sinks HMO in Egham

Another HMO has been refused at appeal due to potential noise from additional pedestrians.

Alton Park ‘screams’ spectre threatens flats

Plans for old folks’ flats near Thorpe Park theme park are on hold due to concerns of screaming from roller coasters.

Noisy fighter jets prompt judicial review

Noisy fighter jets could be too loud for a school and housing near the Lakenheath RAF base in Suffolk.

Airport home too noisy in Leeds

A proposal for a home made out of shipping containers beneath the Leeds/Bradford runway has been rejected at appeal due to noise.

Night time noise omission

A plan to boost London’s night time economy does little for noise.

Shooting okay

A landowner has successfully defended a nuisance action against noise from shooting.

Leisure noise

Oadby & Wigston Borough Council has been criticised over failings in assessing a nuisance from a leisure centre, Increased use of loud music in the centre caused problems for neighbours.

Studio allowed at appeal

A recording studio in Nottingham initially refused on noise grounds has been allowed at appeal.

European aviation expansion impacts set out

A huge 112-page report on European aviation reveals continuing growth of aviation traffic and noise.

WHO upside down

In our report on WHO noise guidelines last month, we erroneously got the conclusions of Accon’s study upside down.

Fan silenced

Licensing laws have been used to silence a fan at a noisy takeaway.

Scottish guv

Steve Williamson was elected as the new chair of the Scottish Noise Advisory Group, to succeed Dr Bernadette McKell.

Scotland noise

Transport Scotland is consulting on its latest five yearly draft action plan, which begins in 2019 and runs until 2023.

Upstairs flat noise again

Another case has emerged with councils being criticised for handling of noise nuisance from upstairs flats with poor sound insulation.

Traffic and pedestrians sink 11 flats

Another planning appeal has reinforced that even small amounts of extra traffic and pedestrians can lead to planning refusal (see also p1 story).

Action week dates

Noise Action Week will return between 20th and 25th of May this year.

Scotland re-looks at firework nuisance

Scotland is consulting on the use of fireworks. It notes noise made by setting off fireworks can be a nuisance, and the disturbance can cause distress to both people and animals.

Covenant used to protect pub

A novel covenant for new residents near existing noisy venues may prevent future noise battles.

HS2 monitoring relies on NOAELs and SOAELs

Detailed monitoring is underway for noise impacts of HS2.

Crawley fears Gatwick

Crawley Council has decided to oppose expansion at Gatwick. The airport is proposing to boost capacity by using an emergency runway (Noise Bulletin November p4).

Turbine nuisance action succeeds

A long-running nuisance case against three 80m turbines has succeeded. The detailed judgment just released shows the terms of the injunction. A long running battle against three noisy wind turbines has succeeded. Papers released earlier this month confirm details of noise-sufferer Rosie Milne’s win in her private nuisance action against Stuartfield Windpower which runs three turbines at West Knock Farm in Aberdeenshire.

Greenwich prosecution

A resident who drove neighbours to despair by persistently playing excessively loud music has had to pay £750 following a successful prosecution by the Greenwich Council.

Sensitivity matters

New Zealand researchers have compared aviation noise with noise sensitivity.

Fracking noise: is it an issue?

Fracking is being opposed by local authorities despite central government backing. Noise and other environmental issues are in dispute, finds Lis Stedman

January/February 2019 Issue 129  headlines

Between-flat noise unpicked by High Court

A 15,000 word High Court judgment will likely form a future precedent for the vexed issue of noise spillage between flats.

Buck-passing leads to Ombudsman rap

A tricky noise problem straddling across two local authorities has attracted the attention of the local authority ombudsman.

Aberdeen error

The Ombudsman has criticised Aberdeen City Council which refused to investigate noise from a council-owned car park.

Purge ventilation dominates Cemex appeal

A quarry operator has challenged retrospective planning permission given to a householder in North Yorkshire. A 16,000 word appeal judgment is dominated by discussions on purge ventilation and SOAELs.

Colchester destruction

Magistrates have ordered the forfeiture and destruction of sound equipment confiscated last July from a Colchester resident following a second prosecution by Colchester Borough Council.

Turbine infrasound spreads 15km

Finnish researchers claim that wind turbines create infrasound that spreads up to 15km.

UK onshore wind collapses

New onshore wind installations fell by nearly 80% in 2018 to the lowest level since 2011 says RenewableUK. Last year 598MW of new onshore wind was installed, made up of 263 turbines at 54 sites, down from a record 2,666MW in 2017.

Arguments begin on Heathrow court case

Lawyers have begun convoluted pre-trial arguments in the high profile challenge to expansion at Heathrow.

Noise leads to Ombudsman rap

Halton Borough Council has been criticised by the Local Authority Ombudsman for failing to properly investigate nuisance from an incinerator.

Anglesey dog kennels rejected due to barking

Dog kennels in a residential area of Anglesey have been rejected at appeal due to noise. Attempts to say noise would not be noticeable using averaging were rejected.

Motorcycle noise

MP Hugo Swire has quizzed Parliament on motorbike noise. He asked: “When will government publish the research it has commissioned to support police and highway authorities in combating and enforcing against excessive noise from motorcycles.”

BS 4142 machines

BSI has recently consulted on BS 4142 rating and assessing sound from industrial and commercial sources.

Fracking & wind

An MP has highlighted the differences between heavy regulation of fracking and light regulation of wind turbines.

UK may not need new WHO

A packed IoA meeting discussed the new WHO noise guidelines. Some felt they were flawed and may not lead to many changes in the UK, found Jack Pease

Accon surveys suggest 3dBA difference between metrics

A key difficulty in the new WHO guidelines is that they are couched in terms of Lden rather than LAeq favoured in Britain. So the 45dBA Lden proposed as an aviation annoyance threshold by WHO must not be directly compared to (for instance) 55dBA aviation annoyance numbers produced by the UK couched in LAeq 16hr.

Stigwood highlights WHO thoughts on turbines

Consultant Mike Stigwood has highlighted that WHO’s guidelines now mention wind turbines and low frequencies.

Aviation plans set out in green paper

The government is seeking views on its aviation strategy, which was published in December 2018. Lisa Russell reports.

CAA report ‘Aviation Strategy: Noise Forecast and Analyses’ (CAP 1731)

Published alongside the Aviation 2050 green paper is a report on noise forecasts and analyses (CAP 1731) produced by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

Flightpaths key to growth

As well as the aviation strategy (previous pages), flightpaths are again being analysed, finds Lis Stedman

Airspace feasibility review released

The NATS report, submitted earlier in 2018 to the DfT and now reviewed by the CAA, looks at the feasibility of airspace modernisation in the south of the UK, from Birmingham in the north to Bristol in the east and the Channel in the south, covering 15 airports in total. It considers whether there is sufficient capacity to accommodate airports’ potential future demands for airspace, to establish the extent of interdependency between the various airports’ future demands for airspace, and to propose an initial plan to deliver airspace change.

December 2018 Issue 128  headlines

Edinburgh nuisance fuels Airbnb backlash

Noise concerns are central to a backlash against short term rentals (eg Airbnb) in Edinburgh.

Chocks away for lower noise but increase plane annoyance

As Noise Bulletin went to press, Government released a consultation proposing a dramatic rise in flight numbers and acceptance there may be more annoyance.

Drone noise

A Freedom of Information request suggests growing numbers of complaints of drone nuisance.

Festival tests licensing regime

An appeal has been tabled against stiff noise conditions on the Wireless Festival in London. It follows a huge licensing inquiry that has concluded drawing in 1,286 pages of evidence, much of it on noise.

Cornwall flats refused due to industry noise

A block of flats has been refused at appeal due to noise concerns.

New WHO guidelines applied to Heathrow

A Heathrow activitist has compared new WHO guidelines against guidelines for Heathrow noise.

WHO change agreed?

Ruth Cadbury MP asked in Parliament what steps Defra is taking to align UK noise pollution guidelines with the new WHO guidelines.

Westminster moots busker plan

Westminster City Council is planning tougher rules on buskers.

Lambeth rebuilds noise team reversing cuts

Lambeth has recruited a new noise team having been criticised for abolishing its previous team to save money.

Service pressure

The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has challenged local authorities not to “throw out the rule book” when redesigning services in the face of budget and resource pressures.

WHO snippet

Noise researcher Anna Hansell informed the recent Epuk conference in Birmingham of background to the recent updated WHO noise guidelines.

Healthy housing concerns

Noise is among the top concerns of a Parliamentary group demanding action for healthier homes.

45dBA contour

Following identification by WHO of 45dBA as the preferred cut off for health impacts near airports, Brentwood MP asked Government in Parliamentary Questions: “What estimate he has made of the number of people who live in the 45 Lden noise contour around Heathrow airport.”

Council failures on night time chillers

The Ombudsman has found against the London Borough of Tower Hamlets for a second time over delays in acting against excessive chiller noise.

Barn provokes bitter row

A bitter row over a barn conversion has spilled over to the Birmingham High Court.

Noise commissioner finally appointed

The Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise (ICCAN) is seeking part time commissioners having finally – after months of delay – appointed a lead commissioner.

WHO guidelines misused, claims Baker

A consultant is claiming WHO is being routinely misused.

Night tube prompts headaches

Earlier this Autumn the London Assembly heard in detail of efforts to keep noise down as a result of the night tube.

Ultrasound puzzle studied

Research carried out by Apex Acoustics has identified widespread public exposure to ultrasound. Lisa Russell reports.

Aviation limbers up for expansion

In the run up to this week’s Green Paper release (see news page one), a raft of aviation policy papers and announcements were released, finds Lis Stedman

November 2018 Issue 127  headlines

WHO guidelines updated

The much anticipated World Health Organisation environmental noise guidelines have finally been released in a high profile ceremony in Basel.

City strategy

The City of London has released a draft transport strategy that aims to remove traffic in a bid to cut noise, air pollution and accidents.

Ealing wins 2018 John Connell Awards

The Noise Abatement Society (NAS) has had its annual John Connell Award ceremony held in Parliament at Westminster.

English plans shows increase

English noise action plans released for consultation suggest far more people are subjected to noise than five years ago.

More Scottish important areas

Scotland has released its noise action plans. Noise important areas have dramatically increased in number.

Fracking plea

20 environmental charities and campaigning groups spearheaded by CPRE have joined forces demanding that the Government drops its plans to ‘fast-track fracking’.

Quieter power for Islington canal boats

The Canal & River Trust and Islington Council are creating an ‘eco-mooring zone’ for visiting boats between York Way and Danbury Street on the Regent’s Canal in London in a bid to cut noise and pollution 

West Berkshire investigated on MUGA trouble

The local authority Ombudsman has dropped a case against West Berkshire council for failing to properly handle a complaint over a MUGA (sports ground). The complainant is having to take civil action.

Sealed windows OK

A planning appeal has failed but noise objections were sidelined

Departing planes are lower

A comprehensive CAA report on airport departure noise suggests that planes are heavier and lower than before making them potentially noisier.

Gatwick sets out back-door expansion plan

Gatwick is to move a taxiway 12m to give it sufficient separation from the main runway to allow it to operate as a second runway for take offs.

Bristol student £250 fines

Bristol University has introduced a stiff student code of conduct that can lead to £250 fines for those making excess noise in the community.

Westminster leaver

Stroma has announced the appointment of Phil McIlwain to a senior position in its Acoustics team.

NPS in March

Five judicial reviews of the National Policy Statement for airport expansion will be heard in one rolled-up hearing in March.

Sound judgment

A full judgment has been published for an appeal that centred on poor noise insulation between flats in Bristol (Noise Bulletin October p3).

PDR questions in Parliament

Lords have demanded to know what the Government is doing about substandard accommodation created under new PDR relaxation.

Barking battle

A Northampton woman was fined £615 after being found guilty of breaching an abatement notice served for excessive dog barking at her property

WHO sets out new guidelines

Lis Stedman takes an early look at new World Health Organisation noise guidelines that underpin so much policy in the UK

AEF comments on implications for aviation policy

For aircraft noise, the relevant guidelines are “For Lden, we strongly recommend reducing noise levels to below 45 dB Lden, as noise above this level is associated with adverse health effects. For night exposure, the guidelines strongly recommend reducing noise levels to below 40 dB Lnight, as aircraft noise above this level is associated with adverse effects on sleep.

More from Internoise

This summer’s Internoise 2018 conference in Chicago covered a vast range of topics. Lisa Russell follows last month’s report with a snapshot of some papers, including ones on aviation noise, health impacts and wind farms.

October 2018 Issue 126  headlines

Complaint rationing rapped

Lambeth Council has been criticised by the Local Authority Ombudsman for capping the number of complaints that can be made.

WHO noise guidelines are imminent

WHO will next week launch new environmental noise guidelines.

Aberdeen also caught failing in duty

Aberdeen Council has also been caught out failing in its statutory duty on noise (see also Lambeth, above).

HMO refused due to noise

The question of noise affecting neighbours of HMOs (houses in multiple occupation) has been tested at appeal.

North Norfolk pays costs on noise appeal

Noise fears have been dismissed for a barn conversion at appeal – with costs awarded against the planning authority.

Dementia impact uncovered in London

Research suggests that air pollution and to a lesser extent noise can cause dementia.

Andrew Milne (and others) v Stuartfield Windpower Ltd

The Noise Nuisance case has been continued until January to give time to ascertain if mitigation measures have been successful.

Heathrow noise sharing plan

Noise objectors are demanding an additional objective in the process to share noise around an expanded Heathrow.

Airports reduce house prices

Swedish researchers believe that a 1db decrease in aircraft noise cuts 1% off property prices – equivalent to £1,000 on average for Swedish house prices.

Private prosecution against shooting noise

A wealthy neighbour is carrying out a s82 private nuisance prosecution against a landowner on account of shooting noise.

Noise breach

A Bristol court appeal has demonstrated the difficulties of enforcing lease conditions on noise in rented properties.

Kitchen flue guidance for sale

Emaq – Ricardo’s air quality training arm – has updated noise and odour guidance for commercial kitchen extraction equipment.

Students warned on late night nuisance

Students in Nottingham arriving for the new university term have been reminded of potential penalties for noisy parties.

Manchester initiative

Manchester Metropolitan University and The University of Manchester have introduced a system of student ‘guardians’ who can report anti social behaviour to the police and universities and act as professional witnesses.

Shared street soundscape

A study has attempted to assess the soundscape benefits of traffic restrictions and shared streets (calmed streets where pedestrians and vehicles mix).

Motorway noise no bar to homes

Bellway Homes has succeeded at an appeal in overturning refusal of 193 homes near Preston deemed too close to a noisy motorway.

Heathrow challenge

A preliminary High Court hearing took place last week confirmed that the full legal challenge against expansion at Heathrow will be heard n March.

Breach prompts vent upgrade

A breach of a noise condition means a builder must install better trickle vents.

Grants available for Welsh noise action

Welsh Government has made available grants for environmental improvement projects. Noise projects are eligible.

No stroke study

A joint UK and Norwegian study has found no link between noise and stroke.

‘Pioneering’ prefab barrier

Highways England is claiming a UK first for a new noise barrier in Wakefield.

Hartlepool Crasbo

Community safety officials in Hartlepool have been granted their first Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO).

Noise takes centre stage in plan

An air quality campaigner is driving a novel local neighbourhood plan for Knightsbridge  – noise as well as air quality is being targetted finds Lis Stedman

Internoise unpicked

The Internoise 2018 conference, which took place in Chicago this summer, featured hundreds of papers. Here Lisa Russell takes a brief look at some of ones on noise mapping and urban situations – more next month.


Aug Sept 2018 Issue 125  headlines

Do nothing counts as mitigation

Highways England is meeting its targets for improving the noise climate – but only because it has diluted the targets. It counts an area as “mitigated” if a homeowner declines double glazing.

Road to zero promises ‘transformative’ quiet

Government has published its Road to Zero clean vehicle strategy. It promises more electric vehicles which it says will lead to “transformative” cuts in noise in cities.

Collars banned

Anti barking collars are set to be banned following a consultation.

Stansted to court

Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) has filed an Application for Judicial Review with the High Court.

NPPF toughens agent of change

The revised National Planning Policy Framework has been finalised. It differs little from the draft circulated earlier this year (Noise Bulletin Jan p1).

Broadland railway bleeper not a nuisance

A railway crossing alarm is not a nuisance, the Local Authority Ombudsman has confirmed.

Ball noise ok

Harlow Cricket Club has won its appeal to install more nets at its club.

Restaurant fine

The operator of a restaurant where loud music was repeatedly blasted out up until 3am was ordered to pay £7,250 following a successful prosecution by the Royal Borough of Greenwich.

Six challenge Heathrow NPS

Six challenges have been tabled to the national policy statement that enables expansion of Heathrow.

Drone laws ignore nuisance potential

Government is putting in increased regulation of drones but the issue of noise nuisance is only indirectly addressed.

High noise fears in Brentford downplayed

A planning inspector has approved flats in Brentford despite “very high” noise from the M4 motorway.

ANC careers site

The Association of Noise Consultants has launched a new online showcase designed to attract more students into acoustics.

Slough fine

A Slough bar has been fined more than £2000 for a string of noise complaints, following an investigation by the council.

Plan dilutes noise aspirations

Noise aspirations put forward in the Knightsbridge Neighbourhood Plan have been watered down during examination by an inspector.

SEPA criticised for permit failure

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) has been criticised for failing to include noise in a waste permit. A resident complained to the Scottish Ombudsman because of the failures.

Fracking shake up takes shape

Moving decision making on fracking planning applications to a national level contradicts the principles of localism and would likely exacerbate existing mistrust between communities and the fracking industry, MPs say.

Shale planning

A consultation has been launched on whether to deregulate shale exploration.

Lancs go ahead

Cuadrilla has received final hydraulic fracture consent DBEIS for its first horizontal shale gas exploration well at its Preston New Road site in Lancashire.

Safeguards needed

The Government should establish a new independent oversight body—the Environmental Enforcement and Audit Office (EEAO) — modelled on the National Audit Office (NAO), to ensure that the governance, enforcement, oversight and policy functions currently carried out by Europe are not lost.

Somerset sanction

A woman from Worle who ignored a noise abatement notice has been ordered to pay hundreds of pounds in fines and costs.

High Court quashes housing

Planning permission for housing near a noisy factory has been quashed following a High Court challenge.

Societal benefits of green areas valued

A government statistics body has ‘costed’ the benefits of green space. The value associated with living near a green space is estimated to be just over £130 billion in the UK.

Noise ruled out on birthweight

Noise has been ruled out as a risk factor in low birthweight. Some studies have suggested noise can increase stress and blood pressure which then leads to low birthweight and premature babies.

Wales (again) sets out action

Wales has again moved ahead of other UK regions by setting out a noise action plan. Lis Stedman reports

Battersea heliport under scrutiny

An acoustics study has found that noise levels around the London Heliport in Battersea could pose a health danger to some residents along the flight path. Lisa Russell reports.

July 2018 Issue 124  headlines

Airbnb noise tested at appeal

Noise features highly in an appeal decision on use of a private flat for short term Airbnb-type rentals.

Heathrow go ahead

Last month’s go ahead for a third runway at Heathrow and more recent  overwhelming Parliamentary approval has led to a flurry of legal threats to the decision (more details in our extended feature this month).

Class-action lawyers take aim at incinerator

Lawyers are threatening group litigation against Viridor’s Runcorn Incinerator for noise and odour nuisance.
Doug Fraser, of Silverman Livermore solicitors is gathering support for the claim and already has 153 households each with household insurance which can fund the claim.

Expert judgment overturned

A Magistrates Court has overturned a noise abatement notice served against a one-off party.

Sealed units okay in Birmingham

A huge city centre residential development near noisy nightclubs is set to be approved due to economic benefits.

Abatement notice policy not clear

The Scottish Public Services Ombudsman has criticised a council for failing to have an effective noise nuisance policy.

Builders’ guide

The Association of Noise Consultants (ANC) has produced a 12-page guide to acoustics for housebuilding professionals to give an overview of the most common acoustic requirements and considerations that affect new residential developments,

ANC helm switch

Dan Saunders (pictured) of Clarke Saunders has taken over as chair of the Association of Noise Consultants from Jack Harvie-Clarke of Apex Acoustics.

News from the Association of Noise consultants conference

Veiled threat to consultants

90% of noise reports supporting industrial permit applications are not fit for purpose, the Environment Agency’s noise lead Tony Clayton told the ANC conference last month.

How noise can impact sleep

Last month’s ANC conference heard how noise can impact sleep – and progress on WHO guidelines.
Public Health England’s noise specialist Ben Fenech updated delegates on the likely update this year of the WHO guidelines. An expert group has been considering an update of environmental noise guidelines last updated in 1999.

Southdowns wins

Consultant Southdowns has won the Association of Noise Consultants’ environmental award at its recent awards dinner.

Acoustics Cup 2018

Vanguardia secured the Campbell Associates-organised Acoustics Cup for the second year in a row.

Bar rejected in Blackpool

Plans to extend a bar in Blackpool have been rejected at appeal due to the noise impact on a neighbouring hotel.

Up to date numbers for statutory nuisance

Churchill Insurance has asked every local authority in the UK how many statutory nuisance complaints they receive.

Welsh noise disturbance laid bare

24% of the Welsh population are bothered by noise, an official survey suggests.

Buck passed

The shadow cabinet office minister asked whether the environment department had made an assessment of the effectiveness of local authorities in reducing incidents of noise pollution.

No commissioner yet

The continued delays to the appointment of a noise tsar have been raised in Parliament.

Bird fine

A Tendring resident has been fined £4,000 for failing to comply with an abatement notice to curb noise from his large collection of birds kept in a small garden of a terraced house.

‘Fishing exercise’ dismissed

The UK High Court has ruled against objectors to an Irish wind turbines. Objectors are mounting a huge challenge to a re-powered Waterford wind farm and attempted to use the London High Court to force the operator to release design documents. Defendant ESB said the exercise was a ‘fishing’ exercise and all claims were dismissed.

Hockey impact noise condition removed

Councillors have removed a peak condition designed to protection residents from excessive impact noise from a new hockey pitch.

Cruise injunctions

North Warwickshire has succeeded in obtaining a broad-based injunction against car cruising.

Norfolk fine

North Norfolk District Council has successfully brought a prosecution against a nuisance neighbour who breached a noise-abatement notice.

June 2018 Issue 123  headlines

Green light for Heathrow

The Cabinet has given the go ahead for a third runway at Heathrow.

Costs blooper?

Government has corrected detailed cost calculations released under a previous freedom of information request on noise from an expanded Heathrow.

NPS finalised

The final Airports National Policy Statement has been released.

ICCAN cannot

Proposals for an independent aviation noise regulator (ICCAN) appear to have stalled.

IoA warns on acoustic prisons

The IoA has warned against allowing developers to build “acoustic prisons” anywhere

London park noise mapped

CPRE London has surveyed noise in London parks. Sutton has the quietest parks while Enfield has the noisiest.

Overheating conditions contradictory

A review of planning conditions used in large London developments has revealed that many noise and ventilation conditions can be contradictory and self defeating.

German turbine laws tightened

Germany is tightening noise guidelines for wind turbines and many will now need to be shut down at night. The tightening suggests that Germany is grappling similar issues to the UK ie that guidelines are struggling to cope with noise from modern ultra-large turbines.

Aberdeen turbine nuisance success

A Scottish turbine has been found to be a nuisance (Noise Bulletin March p1).

Cornwall seizure

A CD player, amplifiers and stereos were removed by Cornwall Council’s Community Protection Team following an investigation into loud rock music regularly being played into the early hours of the morning at an address in Princes Square.

Fracking dilutes local input

New rules on fracking are planned that may reduce local powers on noise and other safeguards.

Aviation noise proves very annoying

In the month that Heathrow has got another go ahead, German researchers believe aviation noise is annoying.

Preston chimes

An ice cream code that was nearly abolished has proved useful for Preston in avoiding Ombudsman censure.

Post-Brexit governance spat

Environment secretary Michael Gove has set out his vision for an environmental watchdog mechanism post-Brexit.

Generator noise assessment tool released

Consultant TNEI has developed a noise feasibility tool for proposed generating plant, which allows a level of project risk to be quickly and easily identified early on in the site selection / site design process.

Good and bad for North Tyneside

Banging weights from a neighbouring gym caused a nuisance for a householder who complained to the Ombudsman that North Tyneside Council failed to abate the nuisance.

Notice breach

A Farnborough resident was found guilty of two offences of causing a noise nuisance by breaching a noise abatement notice when she appeared at Basingstoke Magistrates’ Court in a successful prosecution brought by Rushmo

Tranquillity creeps into planning

Last month attempts were made at a planning inquiry to suggest that a noisy, low grade former colliery was in fact a tranquil area worthy of protection. The attempt went all the way to the Secretary of State who endorsed the planning inspector’s refusal but dismissed tranquillity arguments as untried. The arguments put forward are worth airing as they are likely to crop up with increasing frequency as soundscapes and tranquillity gain traction.

Mapping despite EU doubt

An insight into current progress with noise mapping was given by Nigel Jones of Extrium at the recent Cardiff IoA meeting, Lis Stedman reports.

May 2018 Issue 122  headlines

News from the Sussex Pollution Working Group

Sussex focus on planning noise

EHOs in Sussex met last month to discuss noise and air quality. NPPF and NPSE were debated.

Dealing with the lack of PPG24

The conference, held in Brighton, then heard from Crawley Council, which has been at the forefront of managing noise issues prompted by nearby Gatwick Airport. Crawley has been an outspoken advocate of the withdrawn PPG24 which relied on numbers rather than the warm words of the Noise Policy Statement for England.

PDR office conversion criticised

Crawley’s Brian Cox then took the podium: “Permitted development rights that allow conversion of offices to flats is the bane of our life as it can lead to transportation noise

Wales leads the way with noise?

The IoA Acoustics 2018 conference held in Cardiff last month appropriately commenced with an update on noise policy in Wales. Welsh subsidiarity means it can set its own policy which appears more ambitious than England.

Scotland air

Updated Scottish air quality guidance has included specific guidance on noise.

BS4142 misused at appeal

A planning inspector has rejected attempts to get round BS4142 noise penalties by using a ‘hybrid’ approach.

Deadline looms

Time is running out to enter the Association of Noise Consultants Awards programme – the deadline has been extended to May 18th.

Heart rhythm

Noise annoyance can lead to heart atrial fibrillation – irregular heart beats.

ANC’s Budd champions women in acoustics

A member of the Association of Noise Consultants (ANC) leadership team is putting acoustics on the STEM radar as part of her involvement with a mentoring programme operated by the Women’s Engineering Society.

Welsh clean air zones must consider noise

Clean Air Zones (CAZ) planned for Wales must have regard to noise, a Welsh Government consultation suggests.

MEMs-based monitors from Svantek

Svantek UK has launched the SV 307 integrated Noise Monitoring Terminal (NMT) designed for permanent noise monitoring applications.

Action week looms

Noise Action Week is coordinated every year by Environmental Protection UK. The week is an opportunity to raise awareness of the cost of noise to the health and well being of communities and individuals.

B&K now HBK

Brüel & Kjær Sound & Vibration and HBM is to merge
Both BKSV and HBM are operating companies within the holding company Spectris. The new company will be named HBK (Hottinger, Brüel & Kjær).

PDR downside

RICS has reported that permitted development rights allowing offices to be converted into housing without planning permission has lowered standards.

HS2 complaints

Noise complaint appeals on the HS2 high speed rail line between London and Birmingham under COPA will be handled by the secretary of state, not Magistrates Courts, guidance explains.

Tranquillity tested at appeal

Sharps Redmore has successfully defended North Warwickshire Borough Council’s decision to refuse outline planning permission for the redevelopment of the former Daw Mill Colliery in Warwickshire as a train depot. Noise arguments were won (ie that nearby housing would suffer too much noise) but tranquillity theories were rejected.

Destress research on three cities

Sharps Redmore and Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh are involved in an innovative new University research study called Project DeStress.

BBQ fine

A couple from Rownhams in Hants have been found guilty of breaching a noise abatement notice twice last year.

£1250 dog fine

A local resident who failed to prevent his dog from barking has been fined by Leicester Magistrates’ Court.

Park life

Ensuring access to green spaces could reduce mental health issues. Researchers say air pollution and noise explained a proportion of the associations observed.

PDR noise exclusion tested

Noise issues have been tested by an appeal inspector in West London.

Policy tweaks hinted at in aviation thinkpiece

The Government has released a think-piece on the future of aviation calling for evidence.

Stansted has ‘hidden’ plans for expansion

Stansted Airport is seeking permission for an annual throughput of 43 million passengers, an increase of 66% compared to the 25.9 million passengers handled in 2017.

Dog Crasbo

Halton Borough Council has secured a Criminal Behaviour Order against a Widnes man for continually allowing his dogs to bark, almost a thousand times an hour at one point, in what is said to be worst case of noise nuisance that the council has ever had to deal with.

Pregnancy problems

Noise has been found to be a risk factor for pre-eclampsia in a large Canadian study.

Kensington criticised over piano

Dealing with noise complaints between neighbours is a delicate matter that can escalate out of all proportion, as illustrated by a recent case. Lisa Russell reports.

25 year plan unpicked

There was little mention of noise in the government’s 25-year environment plan but there are nevertheless implications for peace and quiet. Lisa Russell reports.

Den Brook remains unresolved

Den Brook made the headlines as novel amplitude modulation conditions were approved by the High Court – then later withdrawn. Now the windfarm is in operation – is it noisy asks Lis Stedman.




April  2018 Issue 121  headlines

NPS annoyance is ‘skewed’

MPs on the House of Commons transport committee believe the recent aviation National Policy Statement understates noise annoyance from an expanded Heathrow. MPs have focused on what they believe are skewed metrics and measures of annoyance.

Plea for repowering of onshore windfarms

Government is being encouraged to allow widespread repowering of old windfarms that are nearing the end of their mechanical and planning life.

Canal authority warns on HS2 noise

The Inland Waterways Association has submitted a further petition to Government as part of its campaign to mitigate the effects of HS2 on the inland waterways.

ANC awards

Categories in this year’s ANC Acoustic Awards have been increased from four to seven

Westminster AirbNb crackdown

Short term lettings – often AirBnB – are being targeted by Westminster City Council. It has released a lettings charter to encourage good behaviour and increased enforcement to punish bad behaviour

Newcastle unable to consider extra noise

465 homes underneath Newcastle Airport’s flightpath will go ahead despite warnings of excess noise.

Fan fine

A Mansfield shopkeeper has been ordered to pay more than £2,650 for creating a noise nuisance at his Ladybrook convenience store.

Airport cost disbenefit

Researchers have shown that environmental impacts can sometimes exceed an airport’s economic benefits.

Considerable annoyance ‘acceptable’

A housing development near Cranfield in Bedfordshire has been approved despite a planning inspector admitting residents would experience “considerable annoyance”.

Action Week 2018

Noise Action Week is back for 2018 and will run from Monday 21 to Saturday 26 May.

Smoking link

Traffic noise exposure has been linked to smoking and drinking, Danish researchers suggest.

£700 noise bill

North Norfolk District Council has been successful in a prosecution for breaching a noise abatement notice.

Noise sinks mining plans

A proposed open cast coal mine in Derbyshire has been refused at appeal on noise grounds.

Domestic noise underpins NI complaints rise

Noise complaints received by Northern Irish district councils have risen by 13%, according to a report by the Department of Agriculture Environment and Rural Affairs released today.

Venues surveyed reveal complaints problem

Many music venues have suffered from noise complaints, a census reveals.

York double

A York city centre bar owner has been sentenced to six month’s conditional discharge and ordered to pay a total £1,179.43 for breaching a noise abatement notice a second time.

Grosvenor bung?

Landowner Grosvenor says it will invest over £1 billion on its estate in London’s West End – and cut noise in Berkeley Square as part of a £4 initiative.

Learning affected

High noise levels were found to reduce learning and

NOAELs and SOAELs creep down?

Just a few cars have been considered to cause a significant effect on a quiet cul-de-sac. This is a far cry from SOAELs in the 60-70db range seen for transport sources. Jack Pease reviews the latest judgment.

Aviation respite: quest continues

Questions still remain about how best to give people a break from aviation noise and how to stop them from being too annoyed. Lisa Russell reports. (also respite and WHO annoyance from planes)


March 2018 Issue 120 headlines

Carpets: £100k and injunction

A long running dispute about noise between two high-end London flat dwellers has been resolved with a £100,000 compensation payment and an injunction to remove hard flooring.

Chief medical advisor warns on noise

The Government’s chief medical officer – Sally Davies – has warned that noise may be having a significant effect on public health.

Turbine nuisance bid

Hearings are now complete – and judgment awaited – on a noise nuisance case.

Wales changes PPG on noise

Wales is revamping planning policy – noise and air policies will change to comply with the thrust of the Welsh Wellbeing Act.

Welsh din mapped out

Welsh noise has apparently shot up – but officials say it is a result of calculation changes.

Turbine toppling ends long running row

A long running battle with a noisy mid-sized has ended following its removal.

Calibration upgrade

UK noise firm Cirrus Research has expanded its calibration services so any model, make or brand can now be serviced by its team of in-house engineers.

Agent of change promise in Scotland

Scotland is promising to tighten up on the ‘Agent of Change’ issue in response to the growing public concern that existing noise makers are being compromised by new neighbours.

NOAEL becomes SOAEL in Southend

In an extraordinarily long High Court judgment consisting of over 10,000 words – 213 of those were ‘noise’.

58 dwellings allowed

By contrast to the case (left), increased noise down a quiet cul de sac has been dismissed as a problem by an appeal inspector.

Stansted spin?

Stop Stansted Expansion has described the latest expansion proposals as misleading by understating the inevitable noise impact. It describes as a ‘sweetheart deal’ the planning agreement with Uttlesford District Council to enable expansion.

‘Petty’ piano fine unpicked

A freedom of information request has shed more light on a high profile prosecution by Kensington & Chelsea Council against a piano-playing flat dweller.

Dog fine

A Slough resident with a pair of barking dogs has been fined a total of £750 for nine offences of breaching a noise abatement notice issued because of his barking dogs.

Industry noise sinks housing

Housing near a noisy industrial estate has been rejected lest future occupants complain of noise. Desirability of sealed windows was also questioned.

Overheating guidance

Experts have released guidance on how to balance the often competing needs for ventilation and noise insulation.

Gosport £10,000 fine

A Gosport bar and restaurant proprietor who repeatedly ignored a ban on loud music has been told by magistrates to pay more than £10,000.

Aviation impacts studied in CAA reports

Two reports have been released by the CAA on respite and health impacts.

Scout Moor

The highly contested Scout Moor wind farm development near Rochdale has been approved – but noise arguments were dismissed.

Heathrow sets out plans

Heathrow has set out its early thoughts on its planning application for a third runway.

Glazing giveaway

A Cheshire couple, who live less than 80m from a motorway, have become the first in England to benefit from a new free double glazing scheme to reduce noise.

Fracking probe

The House of Common Communities and Local Government Committee is probing whether guidance for local authorities taking planning decisions on fracking applications needs to be updated or improved.

Council tackles turbine

There is a spate of nuisance actions taking place against wind turbines, Kirklees Council has lost patience with one on its patch, finds Lis Stedman

Infrasound tested at appeal

Objectors are objecting to each other on the issue of wind turbine infrasound. Jack Pease looks at a judgment that cuts through the science. The reasoning has now been published on the successful appeal by SSE Generation Ltd against non determination of its application of a 5-yr extension to three offshore wind turbines.

January/February 2018 Issue 119 headlines

Knightsbridge plan gets tough

Part of a London borough may benefit from tough new noise planning safeguards in a novel neighbourhood plan.

£50,000 penalty for noisy turbine

A noisy turbine in Kirklees has led to over £50,000 in fines and costs.

Deliveroo curbs

Food delivery firms such as Deliveroo are being restricted in Westminster.

Gun club conditions too weak

Bassetlaw has been criticised by the Local Government Ombudsman for weak planning conditions that made it hard to stop excessive shooting noise.

s79 duty not being fulfilled

A resident has complained that Ryedale Council is not fulfilling its Section 79 duty to investigate noise within its area. The Local Government Ombudsman says it cannot rule on the matter.

Hunterston decision

An appeal inspector has rejected claims that turbines at Hunterston near Glasgow cause low frequency noise.

Noisy roads

A Highways England progress report has admitted that it has treated just 121 noise important areas out of its target of ‘at least 1,150 by 2020”.

UK insulation advice

The Institute of Acoustics has issued a short guide in a bid to avoid confusion on who is qualified to carry out sound insulation tests.

Outdoor directive

The European Commission is consulting on options for revising the Outdoor Noise Directive which covers 57 outdoor machinery items such as lawnmowers and construction plant.

Charges change

The Environment Agency is consulting on a widespread shake-up of industrial regulation charges.

Lambeth defends threshold of three

Lambeth has defended a policy that appeared to suggest that three noise complaints would be necessary before it investigated a noise complaint.

UNESCO resolves on importance of quiet

World heritage body Unesco has adopted a draft resolution “on the importance of sound in today’s world so as to promote best practices”.

Fry to Ramboll

Chris Fry has joined Ramboll as a director, he was previously managing director of the Temple Group. Steve King leaves RSK to join Ramboll’s Manchester office.

SEA guidance

The RTPI has published new guidance on Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA). It lists four “tips for success”:

Brent fine

A musician who kept his neighbours awake at night and ignored a noise nuisance notice has been ordered to pay more than £1,300 to a court.

Birds sink Cotswold waste plan

A proposed waste processing site has been refused permission at appeal due to the impact of noise on wildlife.

Wales updates directive maps

Wales has updated its noise maps fulfilling deadlines in the EU noise directive.

Revised air forecasts show near-doubling

Current air movements of 267m passengers a year could nearly double by 2050, DfT forecasts suggest.

Chimes silenced

Dover District Council has been obliged to serve a noise abatement notice on St Peter’s Church in Sandwich to silence

£12,500 generator fine

A pub has been taken to court by Three Rivers District Council because of a noisy generator.

Growth decoupled

Sustainable Aviation – a coalition of UK airlines, airports, aerospace manufacturers and the air traffic service provider – has published its latest progress report showing how growth in passenger numbers has been disconnected from the rate of growth in carbon and noise emissions.

Fireworks debated in Parliament

Parliament has once again debated the issue of noisy fireworks.

One in 10 new homes was a former office

New analysis by the Local Government Association reveals nearly one in 10 new homes over the last two years was converted from an office.

Fan fine

A Portuguese restaurant in Southend has landed a bill of more than £6,000 after consistently failing to repair a noisy extractor fan.

Arrestable offence

Persistent and loud stamping and banging were among the anti-social noises which has led to a resident of a block of flats in York being found guilty of noise nuisance and a warrant issued for his arrest.

25 year plan: noise sidelined?

Noise is barely mentioned in much hyped English 25 year environment strategy – wildlife and plastic stole the headlines, found Jack Pease

Agent of change under scrutiny

Cross-party support for the ‘agent of change’ principle means that the concept is once again in the news and may be incorporated into English national planning guidance. Lisa Russell reports

Newham struggles to close down premises

Licensing specialist lawyer Paddy Whur at Woods Whur has highlighted the difficulties in enforcing noise nuisance on a badly run club: “A premises licence was reviewed by Newham’s environmental protection team in February 2017, after a series of complaints from local residents.

Anti social behaviour scrutinised

The London Assembly has taken a close look at anti social behaviour, reports Lis Stedman

WebTAG updates on noise

Dull-sounding but important WebTAG valuation tools have been updated


December 2017 Issue 118 headlines

London plan backs venues

The ‘Agent of Change’ principle has been given backing in the draft London plan currently under consultation.

SPG adds to ‘Agent of Change’ principle

Supplementary planning guidance has also been published highlighting the importance of dealing with noise in planning: “Development proposals should seek to manage noise without placing unreasonable restrictions on development.

Reading resorts to railway abatement notice

Persistent noise from diesel locos has led to Reading council serving an abatement notice against both First Great Western (FGW) and Network Rail, and their directors.

RSK buys Cole Jarman

Consultant RSK has bought noise specialist Cole Jarman.
The 19-strong firm will continue to operate as Cole Jarman, a wholly owned subsidiary of RSK.
l More next month.

Balcony noise sinks Havering housing

150 homes have been rejected at appeal due to noise and amenity fears.

Road traffic sinks digester

Noise from delivery trucks has been cited as a key reason for dismissal of an appeal for a slurry digester and biogas plant near Billingshurst.

Aviation guide

The Aviation Environment Federation has launched a new guide for those experiencing plane and helicopter noise.

Lancashire censured for not carrying out quarry monitoring

Lancashire County Council has been criticised for failing to carry out timely noise monitoring of a quarry. Reversing alarms were causing a nuisance to a residential neighbour.

Thekla battle

The iconic Bristol music venue – The Thekla (a permanently moored former ocean-going fishing boat) fears it could receive noise complaints from a new development.

Music fine

A man, who ignored 11 warnings to turn down his music, was fined £4,400 following a successful prosecution by the Royal Borough of Greenwich.

Ignoring officers’ advice costs Herefordshire

Noise and odour have led to a costs decision against Herefordshire Council.

News from the Epuk annual conference held in Birmingham

Agency’s ‘worst’ nuisance abated

Jon Toft of the Environment Agency told the Environment Protection UK conference held last month how the Agency abated noise at the ‘nastiest’ noise nuisance case he’d seen – Bidwell Metals.

Use ‘prior consent’ to control rail noise

Wiltshire Council’s Richard Francis told the Epuk conference that use of ‘prior consent’ can force Network Rail to control noise.

LFN wind response

Last month Noise Bulletin report concerns from acoustic expert Dick Bowdler that claims that wind turbines create low frequency noise risk undermining claims that audible noise creates nuisance (NB November p2).

Noise and NO2 both have heart impact

Although air pollution and road traffic noise have been associated with higher risk of cardiovascular diseases, associations with heart failure have received only little attention.

Aviation NPS shapes policy

Lis Stedman looks at the aviation NPS consultation which contains quite a lot of new policy on aviation noise

Crossrail noise headache solved?

London’s massive Crossrail construction project has highlighted some challenges and innovations that could prove useful for other schemes large and small. Lisa Russell reports.


November 2017 Issue 117 headlines

Annoyance level to drop?

Tucked away in the myriad of papers contained in the bundle supporting the re-consultation on the aviation NPS (see below) is a clear statement of intent to reduce the official ‘significant annoyance’ contour – currently set at 57dB LAeq 16hr.

Airports NPS revisited with extra analysis

Government is consulting on a revised draft Airports National Policy Statement. It includes much new analysis on noise resulting from a third runway at Heathrow.

Air firm launches new noise practice

Air Quality Consultants – one of the largest and most influential consultants in the air quality field – has launched Noise Consultants Ltd as a sister company.

Drone noise analysed

NASA researchers have attempted to assess the annoyance potential of drones. The proliferation of drones could lead to complaints.

Turbine distance no bar to complaints

The European Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee has confirmed that access to courts to challenge wind turbine permits cannot be dependent only on distance.

Gun silencer

An appeal against a noise abatement notice on a Northallerton gun club has been dismissed.

Further infrasound warning from Bowdler

Acoustician Dick Bowdler has warned against assuming nuisance from wind turbines is caused by infrasound.

Clock complaint

A letter of complaint regarding the way Dover District Council has handled its investigation into noise nuisance from church clock chimes has been issued.

£3,000 bill

Newcastle Magistrates’ Court has handed down costs and fines of £3,000 for failing to comply with a noise abatement notice served due to a resident shouting and playing loud music.

Perth in Muga trouble

Perth and Kinross has been criticised by the Scottish Ombudsman for failing to properly deal with noise from a MUGA (multi use games area).

Council misunderstands nuisance

Tower Hamlets has been told to apologise and pay £100 in costs for failing to properly understand its nuisance duties.

400,000 ‘E’s

400,000 Part E sound insulation tests have now been registered.

ProPG wins noise ‘Oscar’

The Noise Abatement Society has recognised the ProPG planning guidance in its annual John Connell Awards.

Bexley church rejected due to noise

A change of use from a warehouse to a church has been rejected at appeal due to noise concerns.

Noise sinks 55 Birmingham flats

Birmingham City Council has refused planning permission for a development of 55 flats next to a music venue. It was not prepared to allow the sealed windows needed to reduce the chance of noise nuisance.

Exposure divided by race

Ethnic minorities tend to be exposed to higher noise levels, United States researchers suggest.

Hyena follow up confirms health effect

A follow up to the Hyena airport noise and health study suggests notable health effects on residents living near Athens airport.

Turbines worsen suicide risk

An Illinois researcher believes wind turbines increase suicide risk.

Breast effect

A study of over 6,000 women living near Frankfurt airport suggests an increased likelihood of breast tumours are associated with aircraft noise above 55dBA – but not road or rail noise.

Activity curtailed

Traffic noise appear to suppress sports activity, researchers suggest.
Researchers investigated associations between modelled residential traffic noise and leisure-time sports.

Noise contributes to possession precedent

Noise nuisance has contributed to an important High Court precedent on procedures for evicting noisy tenants.

Bar bill

Leicester City Council has seized noise equipment from a bar following six years of complaints about very loud music.

Experts meet in London

The 24th International Congress on Sound and Vibration (ICSV) tapped a huge body of noise research and findings

October 2017 Issue 116 headlines

Turbine controls questioned

A member of the IoA turbine noise working group has warn-ed that planning conditions are complicated and may not work.

Helicopters sinks RAF Benson housing

South Oxfordshire District Council robustly argued against a new housing development near a noisy airfield and road.

Fresher crackdown

Welwyn and Hatfield Council has laid on extra fresher patrols to keep noise down.

Dreamliner effect

Heathrow’s updated Fly Quiet and Clean report suggests it is quieter than ever – for the first time there are no older generation and noisy Chapter 3 aircraft operating at the airport. Quieter Boeing Dreamliners have replaced some of the noisiest jets.

Landing noise

A Civil Aviation Authority study says automatic monitoring has a limited role in cutting landing noise.

Homes rejected due to existing businesses

Plans for nine homes on brownfield land near an industrial estate have been turned down due to noise.

Another refusal

Houses have also been rejected at appeal near a Darlington industrial estate – again due to noise. The 40 houses were proposed next to noisy industry.

Dual carriageway apology from Northampton

The Local Government Ombudsman has criticised Northampton Borough Council and told it to apologise because of failures to respond to dual carriageway noise and dust concerns.

Complaints website for Ireland

A website has been set up to collect data on noise complaints in Ireland.

Wellbeing in

The Welsh Wellbeing Act has become law.

Noisy house refused

An appeal inspector has confirmed that it would be too noisy for a single house near Stansted Airport.

Protesters split on low frequency

A group of experts who have banded together to argue against official wind turbine noise assessments held a seminar in Glasgow last month.

East Yorks vindicated over turbine trouble

East Yorkshire council did no wrong when it failed to stop a noisy turbine.

Luton trouble

Anger is growing around Luton Airport due to increased air traffic

Quarry appeal fails: too late

An appeal against expansion of a quarry in Cambridgeshire has failed in the High Court.

Newry turbine loud

A 40m tall turbine appears to be breaching noise conditions in Castlewellan, Newry.

Night noise fears from utilities

Plans to force utility firms to dig holes at night may cause noise disturbance, warns the CIEH.

What’s new from Internoise

Noisy Hong Kong was the setting for this year’s Internoise conference. Lis Stedman ploughs samples 800 papers.

Tube noise rises

Transport for London is ‘unsure’ why some tube trains appear noisier.

Nuisance confusion

Permitting and statutory nuisance in England and Wales has been clarified to reduce confusion about how nuisance can be handled from regulated businesses avoiding ‘double jeopardy’.

Levy gets off to shaky start

There has been very little take-up of the opportunity for English and Welsh councils to introduce a Late Night Levy – but a trickle of new ones are still coming through. Lisa Russell reports.

Aug/Sept 2017 Issue 115 headlines

London consults on strategy

The London Mayor is consulting on a new environmental strategy. For the first time, one broad strategy will incorporate other specific strategies including noise and air quality.

Zip wire refused due to noise

A proposal for more zip wires at a disused quarry in Tidenham, Forest of Dean, has been rejected due to unacceptable levels of noise.

Tube complaints up

TfL has revealed noise complaints have risen dramatically in the past year.

Commons nuisance

The House of Commons library has produced a briefing paper on nuisance.

Industry proximity sinks houses

A housing estate near Grantham has been rejected at appeal due to neighbouring noisy industry.

Eight week jail sentence for abusive tenant

A housing association tenant has been jailed for eight weeks for breaching an injunction preventing him from making noise.

Stratford wins £25,000 costs for pub fight

Stratford upon Avon Council has won £25,000 costs against a

Luton trouble

Anger is growing around Luton Airport due to increased air traffic.

Harrow hell

A noisy neighbour who damaged his own hearing with loud music, has been fined after ignoring warnings from Harrow Council to quieten down.

Wales on ‘agent of change’

Welsh MPs have promised to strengthen the ‘agent of change’ principle in a bid to safeguard local music venues.

Outdoor events refused

Retrospective planning permission has been refused at appeal for outdoor events at a turf business in Sutton, Cambridgeshire.

Budd on board

Anne Budd has been elected to the board of the Association of Noise Consultants (ANC).

Labour v Heathrow

The Labour Party appears to have switched its stance on expansion of Heathrow.

IoA sponsors Oscar

The IOA is again sponsoring the innovation category in the 2017 John Connell Awards.

Blood effects

Noise appears to alter important blood properties.

Hard battle over turbines

Turbines at Scout Moor north of Manchester have been approved after a battle concerning amplitude modulation and conditions. They had been called in by Government.

London heliport faces noise scrutiny

Wandsworth, Hammersmith & Fulham and Kensington & Chelsea (members of the London Heliport Consultative Group) are working with the South Bank University (LBSU) to monitor and assess the noise impact caused by operations at the Battersea heliport on the banks of the Thames.

Neighbours object to Darlington cricket thuds

Darlington Cricket Club has attracted numerous objections to its application for retrospective planning permission for all-weather cricket nets. Arguments are much like those for MUGAs.

Little change for night flights

Night flights at London’s three main airports will continue much as they are. A woolly objective to “encourage” quieter aircraft has been replaced by the phrase “limit or reduce” impacts on people.

Short term effects

Rapid changes in noise levels in town centres and on busy high streets can influence the heart.

Turbine trouble in Scotland Aberdeenshire

Applications for wind turbines may have nose dived but that still leaves existing turbines hitting legal problems, finds Lis Stedman.

Flightpath woes hit City Airport

Latest figures from London City Airport indicate that a concentration of flights along new paths has led to a rise in complaints. Lisa Russell reports

July 2017 Issue 114 headlines

Planning guide finally launched

A guide has been launched that aims to cut noise nuisance in new homes.
Three bodies have joined together to produce the ‘ProPG’ guide that sets out how good acoustical design can reduce noise impacts for residents – and make it easier to obtain planning in areas where noise is not likely to be a problem. It fills the vacuum left by the withdrawal of PPG24.

MUGA Sports ground noise impacts discussed

Sport pitch noise was discussed at last month’s ANC’s annual conference. There are increasing numbers of urban sports facilities causing noise problems.

Stansted expansion branded premature

Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) has condemned Stansted Airport following the airport’s formal notification of its intention to submit a planning application later this year to seek permission to grow to an annual throughput of 44.5 million passengers and 285,000 flights. This compares to last year’s throughput of 24 million passengers and 180,000 flights.

Gloria’s gong

Gloria Elliott, chief executive of the Noise Abatement Society, has been awarded an OBE for services to awareness of and solutions to pollution from noise in the Queens Birthday Honours.

Green space

The London Assembly has released a report on green spaces. No mentions at all are made of noise, quiet or tranquillity.
l Park life: ensuring green spaces remain a hit with Londoners

‘Golden thread’ challenged

The presumption in favour of sustainable development that has quashed so many noise concerns has been overturned.

ANC reveals award winners

The Association of Noise Consultants announced winners of its annual acoustics awards last month.
Winners in the environmental noise category were Apex Acoustics, Southdowns and Aecom.

Planning shake up?

It appears that the English planning system is ripe for another review.
A high powered task force has been set up under the auspices of the TCPA under former planning minister Nick Raynsford.

M40 action

A £5 million plan to cut traffic noise for many people living along an 11.5 mile section of the M40 in Buckinghamshire and South Oxfordshire is being planned.

Sealed windows heat risk

A high level panel of acousticians is investigating how to balance the need to keep noise down within a building yet still open windows.

Barking gets order

Barking and Dagenham is the latest borough to use public space orders to ban boy racers.

Scottish planning

Reform of the Scottish planning system has moved forward with the publication of the Scottish Government’s position paper on its preferred way forward for revamping the system.

Levy wobble

Late night levies appear to have stalled with fewer than expected councils adopting them.

Scots mull aviation tax cuts

Environmental groups and MPs are questioning the environmental side effects of Scotland’s desire to slash aviation tax.

Hyena aviation follow-up affirms effect

A follow up to the important Hyena study a decade ago has confirmed significant health effects due to aviation noise.

Noise covered in infrastructure assessment

Noise is covered in a National Infrastructure Commission assessment of the environment. The commission must put together a National Infrastructure Assessment during each Parliament.

Repel the repeal

Environmental lawyers have set up a taskforce in a bid to retain laws protecting the environment post-Brexit.
Richard Macrory, professor of environmental law at University College London, is leading group which aims to plug any potential legal gaps

Fertility impact

High noise can affect fertility, researchers believe.

Bournemouth ban

A student house in Bournemouth has been banned from having visitors in advance of an eviction hearing.

Airbnb leads to likely nuisance headache

Lis Stedman finds worrying early signs that the explosion in short letting such as Airbnb is storing up future noise nuisance issues

Welsh combine noise and air maps

Wales continues to join up noise and air responsibilities – this should reduce the risk of noise being left behind in the current media focus on air pollution

June 2017 headlines

Nightclub flat challenge fails

A further appeal against refusal to allow flats next to the George Tavern nightclub in Tower Hamlets has failed.

Noise Action Week against the odds

Epuk’s Noise Action Week went ahead despite the odds.

Aviation coalition

Aviation pressure groups came together in a pre-election call to change policy.

Infrasound app

An app is now available that claims to be able to measure infrasound with a smartphone.

Noise sinks gypsy camp

Cherwell District Council has refused permission for a 16-berth caravan site for gypsies lest they be disturbed by noise.

Aviation noise impacts reviewed

A team of researchers – including those who are part of the Small Area Health Statistics Unit in London – have reviewed noise impacts from aviation.

£7,500 fine....

Kettering Borough Council has successfully prosecuted a resident for breaching a Noise Abatement Notice and a Community Protection Notice within the borough following a court hearing. The resident has been ordered to pay £7,500 after noise and anti-social behaviour at the property affected five other households.

... and £16,000

A Dordon resident, who harassed neighbours by playing loud music for up 32 hours at a time, has been fined £16,000 following a prosecution by North Warwickshire Borough Council – one of the largest fines in the council’s history.

Turbines found to be noisy

A report commissioned by East Renfrewshire Council has confirmed turbines are too noisy.

Council too slow to deal with bellringers

A council has been criticised for taking too long to react to bellringing complaint.

Solar panels integrated into noise barrier

Contractor BAM is preparing to build a noise barrier with integrated solar cells that will generate 30 megawatt hours of electricity a year. The barrier, designed and built by BAM Infra, is the first to be built and is along the N470 road in the Dutch town of Pijnacker-Nootdorp (between Rotterdam and The Hague),

Lidl deliveries

Lidl has succeeded at appeal in extending delivery hours at its Malden store in Essex.

Arthropod effects

Arthropods (crab/mollusc type creatures) are affected by constant noise.

Calibration offered

Bedford-based Svantek UK; part of the AcSoft Group – is now offering in-house calibration of its range of noise and vibration instrumentation for environmental monitoring applications.

Take That

Former Take That star Robbie Williams’ builders have been fined for making noise on a Sunday.

Asbo pair

East Lothian has handed out two Asbos to deter noisy antisocial behaviour.

Hotel refused above nightclub

A planning inspector has dismissed an appeal saying that rooms above the Club XL nightclub in Bath would be too noisy for potential guests.

Howling huskies get repeat fines in Sheffield

A couple has been fined more than £2,400 for ignoring a noise abatement notice issued by Sheffield City Council’s environmental protection service – for the second time.

More dog fines

York City Council issued the couple with a noise abatement notice in 2012 because of their dogs’ howling and barking at their address. Neighbours complained of the near-constant barking and howling which drove them to often leave home as it was the only escape from the noise.

Aviation discussed by IoA

Much is changing in the field of aviation with implications for the people who hear overflying aircraft. Lisa Russell attended a recent IoA meeting on the key developments.

Rotterdam hosts turbine talks

Lis Stedman reviews papers given at the all important wind turbine noise conference held in Rotterdam last month.

May 2017 headlines

Experts hint at WHO direction

A high level European conference on noise has given the broadest hint yet on how WHO guidelines will change.

Airfield wins helicopter injunction appeal

Bickertons Aerodrome in Bucks has been back in the High Court due to noise from helicopter training which had been curtailed through an injunction – which has now been lifted (Noise Bulletin April 2016 p1).

Disability not relevant to noise complaint

Noise has featured in a High Court case on disability rights and housing policy.

Licensing changes mooted

Noise features highly in an important Lords Committee review of the 2003 Licensing Act. Recommendations include transferring licensing function to local authority planning committees and changes to Temporary Event Notices.

Cumulative assessments

A House of Commons Library briefing paper covers the issue of cumulative impact assessments for alcohol licensing.

Sainsburys delivery hours plea rejected

Sainsburys has had its application to extend hours for fuel deliveries at its Ely store rejected.

Germany sets heat pump noise policy

The German Environment Agency has issued noise guidelines for heat pumps due to complaints about annoying humming noises.

Skate ramp removal endorsed

A private skateboard ramp must be removed on noise and other grounds.

Infrasound: no health effects, says France...

French state public health group Anses says there is no evidence of health effects from wind turbine infrasound.

... and yet infrasound affects the brain

A German study on infrasound is being cited by wind turbine campaigners as evidence that low frequency noise can have health impacts.

Stansted complaints

Stansted departure flight paths were changed last year by National Air Traffic Services (NATS) which has led to a doubling of flights during the day on the easterly Clacton departure routes.

Loaels accepted by Government?

The outgoing government has accepted the use of a 54dbA contour as a ‘LOAEL’.

European noise exposure remapped

A new European Environment Agency briefing reveals around 100 million people are exposed to road traffic noise above 55dB in the 33 member countries of the EU. Of these, 32 million are exposed to very high noise levels (above 65dB).

EIA agreed
New environmental impact assessment rules come into force later this month.

Cornwall hit by MUGA costs

Cornwall Council should not have objected to floodlighting and extended hours at an all- weather sports ground at Falmouth School.

Merton escapes censure by Ombudsman

The Ombudsman has endorsed inaction by the London Borough of Merton when faced with a serial complainer.

Noise can lead to depression, researchers claim

German researchers believe that transport noise can lead to depression. They carried out a large case-control study said to be the first to assess and directly compare depression risks by aircraft, road traffic and railway noise.

Diabetes risk higher

Noise is a higher risk factor for diabetes than air pollution, claim Swiss researchers.

Night tube stores up trouble

Introduction of night services on the London Underground has highlighted the misery that can arise when tube lines are audible in homes above – but the problems can be hard to solve, says Lisa Russell.

City leads way with strategy

The days when local authorities could afford to spend time developing a noise strategy appear long gone. The City of London has bucked the trend and produced a draft strategy, finds Lis Stedman.

April 2017 headlines

TfL defends 2hour tube noise ‘epidemic’

The London Assembly has held a hearing into growing noise complaints about tube train noise. The matter is coming to a head as a result of a move towards all-night running with some residents saying they have been driven to move out of their homes.

Acoustic prisons studied by ANC team

Opening windows, ventilation and noise concerns are being considered by an industry-led committee through the Association of Noise Consultants.

US complete’s national noise map

The U.S. Department of Transportation has produced a National Transportation Noise Map.

WHO update

WHO noise manager Marie-Eve Héroux is leaving her post to move to Canada.
Dorota Jarosinska will take over the coordination of the noise activities.

Turbine commissioner reports

A report has been released of the first year of operation of the Australian wind farm commissioner.

Cardiff battle

A row is brewing on plans to squeeze in flats next to a popular Cardiff nightclub.

Noise and air combine

Researchers have used a time series study to compare the impacts of noise and air quality on Madrid births.

New study reveals UK’s ‘noisiest’ areas

A new study into nuisance noise complaints has revealed the “noisiest” council district in mainland UK.

Wales mulls response to plan

Responses have emerged on Welsh Government plans for joint action on noise and air quality.

Homes likely at edge of Teeside airport

Darlington Council is considering allowing housing in the shadow of Durham Tees Valley Airport.

Drone complaints

Freedom of Information requests have been used to uncover a surge of complaints about drones.

Noise research

Noise is included in a pared-down list of Defra research priorities.

Scottish fracking

Scotland is consulting on the future of fracking with a view to ending the current moratorium.

TNEI boost

Rebecca Evans and Angus Mackay have joined specialist energy consult-ancy, TNEI to its Manchester and Glasgow offices advising on environmental and consenting issues.

Heathrow fairness?

MP Ruth Cadbury has asked the Government why Heathrow residents are treated differently to those near Gatwick.

Live music guide

Consultant Encentre has produced a live music guide.
Aimed at operators and local authority enforcement officers, the guide provides a risk-based guide to the control of live and amplified music.

Sutton move

David Sutton has moved from consultant TRC to Vanguardia.

Airbnb back in the spotlight

Labour MP Karen Buck is attempting to highlight problems stemming from Airbnb lettings in a ten minute rule Bill in Westminster. Such Bills have little chance of becoming law but are a well-tested means of highlighting growing issues.

Construction annoyance in latest survey

Construction features highly in the latest Cirrus Research study of noise incidence in London.

Bamboo barrier

Dutch authorities are trialling a bamboo noise barrier along a busy road as a more attractive material than concrete.

Mayor warns on Heathrow

London Mayor Sadiq Khan has once again warned against an expanded Heathrow on noise grounds. Local councils have also published their submission.

Protest coalition formed

A new coalition has been launched to fight the proposed 3rd runway at Heathrow.

Airspace change protocol under review

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is asking for views on draft guidance that sets out how the airspace change process will work, including when and how affected communities must be consulted and how decisions will be made

Aviation debate

MPs have debated the aviation NPS consultation in Parliament.

Heathrow judgment mulls limits

With increasing pressure to build housing close to airports and busy flightpaths, what planning inspectors think about SOAELs and NOAELS at Heathrow is important across the country. Lisa Russell dissects the Cranford judgment.

Transport modelling discussed

Transport modelling was the focus of an Institute of Acoustics meeting held in Manchester last month. Lis Stedman reports.

Parent-offspring communication

Bird parenting is affected by increasing ambient noise, Belgian researchers suggest.

March 2017 headlines

Heathrow prompts criticism

A raft of Heathrow and aviation related announcements have been made this month

MPs question Heathrow expansion wisdom

he Commons Environment Audit Committee has criticised noise impacts from an expanded Heathrow. MPs made a number of points:

Shisha bars cause Brent problems

Brent Council has demanded increased curbs on shisha bars due to increasing noise and nuisance.

PDR conversion leads to club nuisance

An office block converted to flats under new permitted development rights relaxation has led to noise restrictions on a long- standing nightclub.

First code breach

A builder who ignored Kensington and Chelsea Council’s Code of Construction Practice and carried on working on two Saturdays and a bank holiday Monday was fined by Westminster Magistrates Court.

Cul de sac fears endorsed

A quiet cul de sac becoming less quiet is an acceptable reason to refuse planning permission, the High Court has ruled.

Study suggests fracking may have effects

Fracking may produce noise at levels that may increase the risk of adverse effects on human health, including sleep disturbance, cardiovascular disease and other conditions that are negatively impacted by stress, according to a study by authors at the nonprofit science and policy research institute, PSE Healthy Energy and West Virginia University.

Torbay cleared over persistent complainer

A man repeatedly complained about low frequency noise at his property. Torbay Council failed to find the noise but the householder complained to the Ombudsman – but the complaint was dismissed.

Cruise injunction tested

Two ‘cruisers’ were nearly jailed at the Birmingham higher criminal court for making noise and nuisance in their vehicles.
The prosecution tests the legitimacy of a novel injunction designed to stop noisy and dangerous car cruising in the West Midlands (Noise Bulletin November 2016 p3).

Turbine silenced – council apologises

A noisy turbine was silenced with an abatement order – but now Highlands Council has been told to apologise to a householder by the Scottish Ombudsman.

Scotland rethinks wind energy policy

Scotland is consulting on a draft wind energy policy statement. It has been launched following a nosedive in wind farm development as a result of the cut in subsidies.

MUGA removal

Bristol City Council is planning to bulldoze a small MUGA - multi use games area.

Wind drop

Reducing Irish wind turbine noise limits to 40dba (from 45dba daytime and 43dba night-time) will result in a 29% loss of generating capacity, a report obtained under freedom

ACOEM merger

French consultant ACOEM Group (€62 million revenue, 450 employees) announced a merger with Ecotech.

Another fine

A Colchester man has been ordered to pay £2,825 in fines after Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court found him guilty of two further breaches of a Noise Abatement Notice served by Colchester Borough Council.

Housing plans tackle Agent of Change?

Denser housing on brownfield land and in city centres is a key feature of a new housing policy contained in a white paper. It tackles ‘agent of change’ concerns.

Wandsworth v Lambeth truce

Lambeth Council has agreed to reduce noise levels at the SW4 music festival on Clapham Common following a legal challenge by Wandsworth.

Campaigners guide post-Brexit

A short but provocative new e-book, has been launched. It is said to be the first to assess what UK noise policy might look like after Brexit.

Noise linked to pre-eclampsia

A Danish study of over 70,000 has linked road traffic pollution (noise and air) to pregnancy problems.

Five breaches

Reading Borough Council has secured a conviction against a resident who breached a noise abatement notice five times.

Rental website

A growing rental division has led AcSoft Group – comprising AcSoft Sound & Vibration, Svantek UK and GRAS.UK – to launch a user-friendly e-commerce website to make it easier for customers to hire advanced sound and vibration monitoring instrumentation, software and sensors.

HS2 approved

HS2 has completed over three years of Parliamentary scrutiny to receive Royal Assent.

Post Brexit environment fears

This month the Government claims it will trigger Article 50 which will see us out of the EU within two years. The Lords report on implications for environmental regulation.

Cranford judgment sets LOAELs

Oodles of policy debate is contained in a huge planning appeal decision needed to endorse the Heathrow Cranford Agreement. Loaels and Soaels are set out in a way that could shape any future Heathrow battle

Flightpath changes policy set

There have been a huge number of aviation documents released on Heathrow – flightpaths are just as controversial for rural-dwellers

Heathrow case fails

The challenge by local councils against the go ahead for a third runway at Heathrow failed in late January.

NPS spells out Heathrow framework

The types of mitigation measures that Heathrow will have to abide by in building its third runway have now been set out, but many questions still remain. Lisa Russell reports.

ANIS. ANASE. SoNA. LAeq survives

Lis Stedman looks at a new survey of attitudes to aviation noise. It follows the debacle of ANASE which found increased annoyance but was then undermined. 

January/February 2017 headlines

Turbine claim details emerge

Further details are emerging on a successful private nuisance action against Irish wind turbines. The case was settled in a private out of court settlement before Christmas with payouts – reportedly over £1m – expected to be awarded at a costs hearing in April

Science trumps professional judgment

A south London council has had a nuisance case overturned apparently due to having “no expertise” against a science-based defence argument in a Magistrates Court.

Student clampdown

Manchester universities are cooperating to cut student noise nuisance.

Bedford cuts

Bedford Borough Council intends to save £80,000 a year by cutting back its out- of-hours noise service.

No housing near Henry factory

Housing has been refused in Chard next to the Numatic “Henry” vacuum cleaner factory. Developers failed to overturn refusal of planning permission due to fears that factory noise may lead to nuisance claims.

Sleep disturbed

24 healthy sleepers have been tested for impacts of noise in three nights at three different locations: at a sleep lab, at the participant’s home, and in an acoustically isolated room.

Abingdon curfew

Vale of White Horse District Council is the latest authority proposing to introduce a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) in Abingdon.

Plymouth order

Plymouth City Council has secured a two year criminal behaviour order banning a resident from shouting, banging and playing loud music.

Night flights: cautious welcome

The Government proposes little change to night flights at London’s three main airports for the next five years.

Unexpected overflown boroughs revealed

Research by campaign group Hacan has revealed Hounslow to be the most overflown London borough.


MPs are warning the Government that environmental protections must not be weakened during the process of leaving the EU or afterwards.

Starter home boost

The Government claims there will be a surge of new starter homes built on brownfield sites – typically in town centres.

EIA shake up consultation

Consultation has started on how to implement new environmental impact assessment rules. Despite Brexit, the Government must continue to implement new European legislation even if the UK will not be in the EU two years hence.

Plea to check testing accreditation

Northern Ireland building inspectors are being urged to check up on sound testing reports to ensure they are provided by properly accredited consultants. Reports have been submitted from improperly qualified persons.

Buskers code

Worcester is the latest city to introduce a code for busking.

£1700 costs

Chelmsford City Council prosecuted a noisy neighbour for breaching a noise abatement notice, fines and costs added up to £1,700.

Quietness is selling point for Scotland

A new report by Scottish tourism organisations has identified quietness and tranquillity as a key attraction to visitors to Scotland.

END assessed and broadly okay

An assessment of the Environmental Noise Directive has given it a broadly favourable evaluation – but with some pointers for the future. Lisa Russell reports.

John Connells reward excellence

Some local authorities still have time and money to go the extra mile and do something memorable, finds Lis Stedman

Mapping app for N. Ireland

Despite Brexit uncertainty over the future of noise mapping and Europe, before Christmas Northern Ireland released a mapping app

Film review: In pursuit of silence

A new film highlights the importance of finding some time for silence in our lives. Lisa Russell and Tim Kaye watched the film.

December 2016 headlines

England mapped for £113,000

Defra is tendering to map the entire England area – for £113,000.

Sustainable presumption tested

The High Court has challenged the assumed presumption in favour of sustainable development.

UK coastal noise map completed

The Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) has teamed up with Marine Scotland Science and the University of Exeter to analyse underwater noise data from subsea sound recorders located around the UK coast. Cefas is working to establish a permanent noise monitoring network, which will become operational in 2017.

Turbine damages

As Noise Bulletin went to press, judgment has been entered against wind farm operator Enercon due to noisy turbines in Cork.

Airbnb restrictions

Threats of action against Airbnb-style holiday letting of flats have prompted the firm to introduce time limits.

Price drop

CIEH’s noise policy officer (for 25 years) Howard Price is taking early retirement.
He will not be directly replaced.

Connell awards

Noise Abatement Society John Connell awards have been won by the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea and the City of London, Sheffield City Council was highly commended.

Tory seizure ....

Leicester City Council’s noise team has seized microphones, mixing desks, a keyboard and several large speakers from a local Conservative Club following ongoing complaints from neighbours about excessive noise.

... workers fined too

Cannock Chase Council has successfully prosecuted Chadsmoor Progressive Working Men’s Club for failing to comply with a noise abatement notice.

£800,000 bung

Mineral planning authorities can bid for DCLG funding totalling £800,000 to deal with shale gas applications.

Clapham noise fears

A park shared by two London boroughs has led to noise objections.

Northern Ireland complaints are down

Northern Ireland nuisance complaints dropped last year, an annual report suggests.

Ipswich bucks out-of-hours trend

Ipswich Council has increased its out of hours noise service at a time many councils are scaling down nuisance provision due to council cuts.

Heathrow challenge takes shape

Hillingdon, Richmond, Wandsworth and Windsor and Maidenhead Councils, together with Greenpeace and a resident of Hillingdon, have commenced legal action demanding the Government withdraws support for Heathrow expansion.

London probe

The London Assembly has called in various witnesses to scrutinise the decision to expand Heathrow.

Independent authority

The Government has been quizzed on plans to set up an Independent Aviation Noise Authority.

Novel means to isolate plant noise

The Environment Agency has managed to use permit conditions in a novel way to isolate noise disturbance from two neighbouring firms attracting noise nuisance complaints.

Defra plea

There has never been a more worthwhile time to engage with the Government on noise” claimed Defra noise manager Lewis Baker.
Speaking to the Epuk annual conference, he continued: “In the past we have been covered by the EU and now we may well not be. We are currently developing a 25 year environment plan and will soon launch a consultation, and this will encompass noise within it.”

US face concentrated flightpath battles

Cases are reaching the US courts on the move to concentrate flightpaths.

Air nuisance

Twickenham MP Tania Mathias has tabled a ten minute rule Bill to allow aircraft noise to be treated as a statutory nuisance.

News from the IoA ‘Etsu – is it time to move on meeting

Wind turbine experts gathered in Birmingham earlier this month to discuss the need to replace the 20 year old Etsu assessment guidelines.

Long court fight

Tunbridge Wells Borough Council has ducked a claim for £1m damages following on from serving a noise abatement notice.

Internoise: 900 papers!

The 45th Inter-Noise 2016 was held earlier this year in Hamburg, on the optimistic theme of “towards a quieter future”. With over 900 contributions across every potential aspect of noise and vibration, Lis Stedman cherry-picks some of the multitude that are of interest.

Sensitivity and health link

Ill health has been linked to increased noise sensitivity by Dutch researchers.
Researchers looked at 5806 participants of whom 12.5%) considered they had a high sensitivity to noise.

Noise & birds

Excess noise appears to reduce the ability of birds to successfully breed.

November 2016 headlines

Turbine penalty confirmed

Wind turbines displaying amplitude modulation could be clobbered with up to an 11dBA penalty. 5dB for the thumping. 3dB for any tonal content and 3dB by virtue of abandoning Etsu’s controversional more- relaxed nighttime limit.

Heathrow chosen despite noise disbenefits

The Government has decided that long awaited airport expansion will take the form of a third runway at Heathrow. Night flights may be curbed. Local councils, the London mayor and environmental pressure groups are already preparing to challenge the decision.

Noise top gripe

A survey of 2,000 people found that noise tops their list of neighbour gripes.

Fracking fail

Last month’s Noise Bulletin contained a report on Cuadrilla’s application for fracking in Lancashire.

Studio loses Westminster battle

The High Court has thrown out a claim that Westminster City Council should have refused permission for development next to a noise-sensitive TV studio.

Cheshire vindicated

The Ombudsman has rejected a claim that a council failed to investigate a noise nuisance from a boiler flue.

£600 dog fine

Trafford Council prosecuted a shopkeeper for having a noisy dog and breaching a noise abatement notice.
Continued barking led to a £600 fine and £300 costs.

Noise and NO2

Spatial patterns of noise and NO2 may differ.

Tyres equal barriers

Norwegian research suggests quiet low rolling resistance tyres can reduce noise as much as barriers.

Abandoned home bought for turbine tests

A home abandoned due to noise from a wind farm is to be turned into a laboratory.

Activity drops if exposed to transport noise

Researchers studied nearly 4,000 subjects and found that increased transportation noise annoyance was linked to reduced amounts of exercise. They suggest that lack of sleep might reduce enthusiasm for exercise, the lack of exercise then prompting a raft of adverse health impacts

Bund marginal

A noise bund at Leigh Delamere in Wiltshire has been rejected on appeal.
The bund was to be built out of construction waste and was supported by most local residents. The planning inspector described the estimated reduction in noise of 5.8db to be “marginal” and the bund was refused.

£1,000 barking cost

A Lincoln woman has been ordered to pay more than £1,000 after allowing her dog to disturb neighbours for more than six months with its barking.
On at least two occasions, the dog was recorded barking almost non-stop for 45 minutes.
She was found guilty of breaching a noise abatement notice and given a £660 fine and ordered to pay £300 costs and a £66 victims’ surcharge – a total of £1,026.

Cockerel fine

A woman who ignored repeated requests by neighbours and council environment officers to stop cockerels crowing in her garden has been ordered to pay more than £280 in fines and court costs by Colchester Magistrates, in a case brought by Colchester Borough Council.

Turbines bad for you...

Audiologists argue that wind turbines can worsen human health. they aren’t

Scottish public health experts say there are no health effects from turbines.

Injunctions stop cruisers

Two councils have resorted to injunctions to block planned car ‘cruises’.

Acoustics funding to halve?

The Institute of Acoustics research committee has told Parliament that Brexit could halve research funding on noise.

Pressure higher

Researchers have linked traffic noise and high blood pressure.

Environmental regulations post-Brexit

Report from IoA’s brexit meeting held in London last month. What will environmental regulation look like after a Brexit? This is a question consultants are keen to answer and it was fully discussed at a recent Institute of Acoustics meeting.

Brexit response

The Institute of Acoustics and the other 37 professional engineering organisations, representing all disciplines of UK engineering, have joined forces under the leadership of the Royal Academy of Engineering to provide evidence-based advice to the government on the opportunities and risks caused by leaving the EU.

Dundee warning

Following an inspection by surveillance commissioners, Dundee City Council will in future warn anti social tenants when noise recordings are going to be taken for enforcement purposes.

Judgment sets fracking policy?

Permission has now been granted for the use of ‘fracking’ to extract shale gas from two sites in Lancashire. Lisa Russell looks back at the noise issues that have played a key part in the deliberations. Six pages are needed to do justice to a decision that will likely become the template for fracking noise policy.

October 2016 headlines

Fracking: tight noise conditions’

In a massive 604 page judgment – much of it on noise – central Government has partially approve fracking in Lancashire.

ETSU rejected as nuisance curtails turbine

An Etsu-based defence of a noisy wind turbine has failed with the operator settling a nuisance action out of court.

Gatwick 2nd runway housing unacceptable

A proposal to build one new house beneath the flightpath of a possible second runway at Gatwick has been rejected at appeal.

Wales joins up noise and air

Wales is consulting on a joint noise and air quality strategy.

Target tenuous?

Highways England has a target of “mitigating” 1,150 noise hotspots by 2020. It has only managed 48 but claims it is still on course for meeting its deadline.

Mapping variation

A study suggests European noise mapping may be subject to variations.

Khan pledges on agent of change

Recently-elected London Mayor Sadiq Khan has promised to review the ‘agent of change’ principle in the London Plan.

Colchester criticised for sloppy evidence

A nightclub in Colchester has won the right to open later on two nights a week following a planning appeal.

Row brewing over fighter jet impact

Plans to build 375 homes and a school near RAF Lakenheath are raising military concerns about noise nuisance.

Negative vibes

Wellbeing is reduced for those living near UK airports.

Noise sinks Tyneside housing

A proposal for 65 new homes next to an industrial estate in North Tyneside has been rejected at appeal.

Cirrus polls north west authorities

Noise monitor firm Cirrus has surveyed north west England local authorities to establish the pattern of noise complaints.

Cattle grid woes

Noisy cattle grids have been studied by researchers from Leeds and Bradford Universities.

AM penalty solution fails concerns

The Independent Noise Working Group does not believe the IoA/WSP-proposed penalty for wind turbine amplitude modulation will solve nuisance issues.

Night flights

DfT continues to develop policy for night flights in London in preparation for new restrictions in October 2017 – with a consultation later this year.

Webtag updated

Webtag project assessment methodology has been revamped to include wider impacts.

Airbnb growth

The use of Airbnb in the UK has exploded over the last 12 months, the Residential Landlords Association says.

SOAELs and NOAELs again

Lis Stedman finds the quest to put numbers on SOAELs and NOAELs goes on – whatever acousticians say, everyone loves a proper number.

IoA on NPL pullout

The Institute of Acoustics has lent its voice to concerns that NPL is pulling out of noise measurement.

Controlling construction

Some local authorities are taking additional action to minimise the disruption caused by a proliferation of noisy construction projects in residential areas. Lisa Russell reports.

August/September 2016 headlines

AM turbine penalty – 3dBA?

A 3dBA penalty could be introduced if amplitude modulation (thumping) occurs at a wind farm.

Health a material consideration?

Health should be material planning consideration, say MPs on the Commons Health Committee. A report on 2013 public health changes recommended more focus on planning and health.

Manchester guidance

Manchester City Council has introduced residential quality guidelines that include noise.

London City go-ahead

Noise concerns have failed to halt the expansion of London City Airport.

Tranquillity metric

Clive Bentley of Sharps Redmore told the IoA conference of his quest for a new metric for tranquillity.

Construction monitoring update

Environmental noise experts gathered at the IoA Acoustics 2016 event last week.

Policy vacuum leads to flip-flop

A school is back in the High Court following endless flip-flopping interpreting noise policy.

Further Muga appeal fails in Sussex

Yet another challenge to a decision to remove a condition from sports grounds has failed.

Teignbridge uses WHO to assess MUGA noise

A multi use games area in Devon is causing noise problems for neighbours following installation of floodlights allowing evening use.

NPL dumps noise

The National Physics Laboratory (NPL) is pulling out of airborne acoustics.

Night Czar

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has begun a search to appoint a Night Czar to develop London as a 24-hour city. This has been prompted by the introduction of all-night running of some tube lines.

Shale bung

Government appears to have learned from mistakes made with wind turbines and is consulting on a community payments for those near fracking sites.

£4k party fine

A Roehampton woman who held two noisy parties on consecutive nights was fined £4,000.

WHO lobbied on turbine noise

Noise experts have asked the World Health Organisation to consider wind turbine noise in new environmental Noise Guidelines for the European Region.

Solar barriers abandoned

A project looking at installing solar panels in motorway noise barriers looks set to be abandoned.

Horn again

Train horn noise may once again become an issue with railway authorities considering allowing use of horns at night.

Noise and planning

There have been more interesting noise and planning judgments in Lakenheath, South Tyneside and Crawley – but we’ve run out of space.

Heart flutters

Noise may be responsible for atrial fibrillation – irregular heart beats.

£8,000 dog cost

A couple were prosecuted at Stevenage Magistrates for eight breaches of a Noise Abatement Notice served by North Hertfordshire District Council (NHDC).

AM method proposed

Cuts in subsidies mean that fewer windfarms are being built – but there has still been plenty of interest in developing a robust way of assessing noise issues. Lisa Russell reports on the IoA’s new rating method for amplitude modulation.

All in one wind monitor

The US Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) has patented an ‘all in one’ wind turbine monitor.

Polish setback

The Polish Government has adopted a minimum setback distance for wind turbines.

Planning ignores health?

A Cheshire housing decision earlier this summer suggests that developers can argue their way out of considering health effects of noise. Lis Stedman delves deeper.into the Manchester flightparth decision

July 2016 headlines

Planes quash Cheshire homes

Aviation noise has led to refusal for a large development in Cheshire – now confirmed at appeal. Planners had said that flightpath noise would cause a “significant adverse impact on health and quality of life”.

Sue Bird MBE

Acoustician Sue Bird has been awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday honours list for “services to engineering and to women in engineering both in the UK and abroad”.

Noise Bill read

A Private Members Bill on vehicle noise has passed its first reading in Parliament.

Fracking challenge

North Yorkshire activists are to judicially review North Yorkshire’s go ahead for fracking at Kirby Misperton. They claim environmental impacts were not fully assessed in the decision making process.

Badgers freaked out by wind turbines

Wind turbines stress out badgers, London researchers believe.

Brian May clobbered with costs

Queen guitarist Brian May won £25,000 damages for noise nuisance – but has had his claim

Small heart risk uncovered in Germany

German researchers suggest that aircraft and other transport noise can increase the risk of heart attacks.

Noise prompts mental health issues

German researchers also believe aircraft noise can prompt mental health issues. findings were part of the larger Norah (Noise-Related Annoyance, Cognition, and Health) study.

Train complaints

Residents have complained that idling railway engines cause noise and air quality problems in Reading.

Huge social cost

A study suggests the social cost of noise in France amounts to €57bn a year.

£2,000 fine

Loud noise has cost a Bournemouth resident nearly £2,000.

Quietway in

London’s first “Quietway” route benefitting walking and cycling between Greenwich and Waterloo now open.It runs 9km along traffic-free paths and quieter backstreets.

Quieter oceans

A huge EU project on quieter oceans has come to a close.

Council’s health concerns rejected

Experts managed to persuade the inquiry inspector that there was sufficient uncertainty about health impacts (as opposed to amenity issues) that they should be disregarded.

George Tavern battle succeeds

East End pub landlady Pauline Forster has succeeded in overturning plans for a block of flats next to her pub. The original case hinged on noise arguments – she fears future occupants may complain about noise – but those arguments were once again rejected in this appeal, which succeeded on other grounds.

Westminster firework debate

Firework noise has been debated in Parliament by Westminster MPs.

Summer patrols

Over summer weekends, noise officers from Herefordshire Council’s environmental protection team will be out and about on Friday and Saturday nights as part of the second Herefordshire summer noise awareness campaign.

Husky fine

A couple have been fined more than £2,400 for ignoring a noise abatement notice issued by Sheffield City Council’s environmental protection service.

Student appeal

A Brighton landlord has been told by planning appeal inspectors to cease letting a family home to students. It is the second case involving planning controls on houses of multiple occupation (HMOs) in the town in as many months.

EU quiet areas uncovered

There is increasing recognition of the importance of protecting quiet areas in the countryside to protect nature and let people escape the din of urban life. Lisa Russell looks at a new report into these havens unaffected by noise pollution.

How would a Brexit affect Euro policies such as mapping?

Of course no-one yet knows what will happen post-Brexit in relation to UK involvement in European environmental initiatives.

Commission red tape review progresses

The European Commission is progressing with its better regulation review which “could save up to €50 billion”

When noise just gets too much

Yet another murder has been committed in response to a noise-related neighbour dispute. Lis Stedman scours the sobering headlines

June 2016 headlines

Another MUGA in High Court

Sports ground noise has once again been discussed ad nauseam in the High Court.

Thames corkscrew ok’d despite challenge

A ‘green energy’ Archimedes screw at Teddington Lock on the Thames has survived a High Court challenge on noise and other grounds.

Fracking ahead

North Yorkshire County Council has given the go ahead for fracking test well in Kirby Misperton.

Conversion clampdown

Incoming London Mayor Sadiq Khan says he will consider changes to uncontrolled office-to-residential developments.

Barriers okay for air

A study suggests solid noise barriers do not worsen air quality on the road – contradicting many arguments that suggest noise barriers worsen dispersion of toxic pollutants so increasing drivers’ exposure.

Harlow targets town bikers

Harlow Council and the police have introduced an injunction to ban nuisance motorcyclists in the town.

Wiltshire noise curbs ‘unreasonable’

A planning appeal inspector has found against Wiltshire Council claiming it behaved unreasonably in handling noise issues for a small manufacturer. Wiltshire was deemed to have caused unnecessary and wasted expenses and thus must pay the costs of the applicant.

Leeds gets tough

A tenant has been evicted from a council property in East Ardsley due to anti-social behaviour.

Tenant wins Mayfair battle

A high class art gallery in Mayfair has won compensation in a High Court landlord v tenant battle.

Housing refused

An ongoing battle to win approval for a housing estate near Stone, Staffordshire has failed again.

Remain plea

Environmentalists have set out the case for remaining in Europe next week.

AM ‘depth’

The ‘depth’ of wind turbine amplitude modulation is more important than its frequency, researchers suggest.

Noise helps air

Methodologies developed for noise have been used to monetise the wider benefits of improving air quality.

Airbnb set up noise hotline

Neighbours can now complain to Airbnb about noise from short-let tenants.

Regulator needed for flightpath changes

Westminster Parliament has been discussing flightpath noise again – but this time north of the border.

US suffers similar flightpath problems

A US Congressman is attempting to steer a Bill through congress to mitigate noise from aircraft flightpaths.

Motocross fine

The owner of a motocross course has been fined for breaching a noise notice.

EU citizens content

“Generally speaking, please tell me if you are very satisfied, rather satisfied, rather unsatisfied or not at all satisfied with the quality of the air and the noise level in your city?” inhabitants of 83 European cities were asked in 2015. Results show significant disparities between capital cities in the European Union (EU), with levels of satisfaction regarding air quality ranging from 22% to 88% and for noise levels from 31% to 82%.

Heathrow makes more pledges

Heathrow Airport has responded to the Airports Commission with a series of commitments designed to persuade government to let it build a third runway. Lisa Russell reports.

Automating festival checks

A system newly introduced to the UK simplifies the identification of the sources of bothersome levels of noise in complex situations such as multi-stage concerts or the entertainment districts of cities. Lisa Russell reports.

A week of noise action.....

By the skin of its teeth, Noise Action Week has survived another year on a threadbare budget with participants being whittled away by austerity. But imagination and enthusiasm won the day, finds Lis Stedman

May 2016 headlines

Road compensation argued

A group of householders have been to the High Tribunal Court to argue for compensation for increased road noise following completion of a new road.

Noise retained in framework measure

Noise indicators have been retained in the Public Health Outcomes Framework. There had been fears that noise could be removed as part of a streamlining consultation (Noise Bulletin October 2015 p4).

Aussie probe

Australia has launched a government pro

Coach depot silenced at appeal

Noisy bus and coach engines can be silenced by a local authority, a High Court appeal has suggested.

Huge fine

Flouting a noise abatement notice has cost a Roysto

Wigan noise up

Wigan Council has recorded an increase in noise complaints.

Noise impacts on neonatal skills

A noisy environment can affect a baby’s tactile skills.

Huntingdon pub noise monitor rejected

A planning condition requiring a pub to monitor noise has been overturned.

Vanguardia automates concert control

Entertainment noise specialist Vanguardia is to market the MeTrao tool aimed at managing noise at live events

MPs focus on significance

A long debate in the House of Commons has focussed on the significance of noise effects.

Yes to Heathrow

MPs on the Commons Transport Committee have told the Government to go ahead with expansion at Heathrow Airport.

Low frequency rumble detector

A device claims it can detect low frequency noise and help reduce adverse health impacts via a linked smartphone app and sensor.

Six day respite

A six day respite from aviation noise near Heathrow made no difference to hospital admissions.

Airport U-turn

Incoming London mayor Sadiq Khan has reversed previous mayor Boris Johnson’s decision to object to releasing land to allow London’s City Airport to expand.

Turbine setback

A Bavarian high court has confirmed that turbines cannot be built less than ten times their height away from houses

Noise Action week looms

Noise Action Week 2016 is imminent – 23rd-28th May. Promoted by Environmental Protection UK, themes this year include live music, talking to tenants and sounding out students.

Turbine refused

A Lincolnshire wind turbine has been refused at appeal.

Annoyance survey

MAS Environmental has launched an online wind farm noise annoyance study.

Cuts explained

A CIEH Wales conference has been told that cuts to environmental health budgets have been necessary to protect front line NHS spending.

Fracking discussed in Glasgow

Acoustic experts gathered in Glasgow last month to hear about noise impacts of fracking.

Car cruising injunction upheld at High Court

An injunction put in place by West Midlands authorities is enforceable, the High Court has ruled.

Nuisance abated

A noisy wind turbine in Northern Ireland will only be operated in working hours to reduce nuisance.

Commons debate

A long debate in the House of Commons saw MPs complaining about aviation noise from airports around the UK including Heathrow, Gatwick and Belfast.

Den Brook again

Arguments continue to rage over the much disputed Den Brook Wind Farm in Devon (NB Dec 2014 p4).

Aussie FoI’s wind

Australian’s have used Freedom of Information laws to reveal that the Queensland Government has ignored expert noise advice on wind turbines. Protesters claim the Government’s own advisor told it:

Low frequency low down (at last!)

Years after completion, Defra has released a suppressed research report on how self help could be used to deal with tricky low frequency noise complaints. Lis Stedman reports

Runway woes rumble on

This is set to be an important year for determining how aircraft noise is addressed in the UK – and not only because of the possible decision about a new runway in the south-east of England. Lisa Russell reports.

April 2016 headlines


Injunction for helicopter noise

The High Court has agreed to the use of an injunction to reduce excessive noise from Denham Aerodrome in Buckinghamshire.

Welsh air quality guidance pulls in noise

Welsh Government has released ‘interim’ policy guidance for local air quality management with strong warnings that noise must be considered.

Speed limit

An attempt has been made to introduce a legal ‘speed and noise limit’ for the HS2 high speed line between London and the West Midlands.

IoA: 40 years

IoA has published its history of ‘the first 40 years’.

Sharps addition

Sharps Acoustics is changing its name to Sharps Gayler.

£2k nuisance

A Feltham resident who made his neighbours’ lives a misery with loud music has been ordered to pay more than £2,250 following court

Church nuisance

Southwark Council has taken action against a Camberwell-based church following floods of complaints from residents about persistent and excessive noise from almost daily church services – sometimes as early as 3am.

Rail horns

New dual-speed standards are being introduced for train warning horns.

Night tube noise

London mayoral hopeful Murad Qureshi has warned that the proposed 24-hour tube service could lead to noise and vibration complaints.

Noise impacts

The Environment Agency has updated guidance on information requirements for permit applications that include computer modelling or spreadsheet calculations.

Office to resi rules change

Government has listened to increasing warnings that allowing conversion of commercial property into flats without planning permission risks noise disputes.

Rural flights more intrusive

A new Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign (Gacc) research study finds that the Airports Commission, and Gatwick Airport in its adverts, have underestimated the noise impact on rural communities that surround Gatwick.

‘Independent’ commission says Heathrow OK

A report from the Independent Transport Commission says expansion at Heathrow is possible without jeopardising noise and air quality limits.

Mayor warns of noise costs of expansion

The London Major says that a TfL spells out the ‘astonishing cost’ public health impacts of an expanded Heathrow Airport. He once again pushed forward the need for a Thames Estuary airport to reduce aviation noise impacts over London.

Airspace change process up for grabs

Local communities affected by aircraft noise, and the aviation community, are encouraged to respond to a new CAA consultation.

Welsh indicator

Wales is adopting 43 national indicators.

MUGA sinks Newark homes

Noise from a sports ground has prompted refusal at appeal for a 91-home development near Newark.

Noise fears dismissed in housing approval

A proposed new housing estate in Berwick can go ahead, an appeal inspector has said.

Researchers warn that fracking can have short term impacts

Researchers believe that fracking wells worsen noise.

The findings are contained in the NERC-funded ReFINE (Researching Fracking in Europe) consortium led by Newcastle and Durham Universities.

Heathrow challenge

Four local authorities – Richmond, Wandsworth, Hillingdon and the Windsor and Maidenhead – are threatening to take the Government to court unless it drops plans for a third runway at Heathrow.

Behaviour order

East Northamptonshire Council believes it is one of the first local authorities in the UK to successfully apply for a Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) after a conviction for breach of a noise abatement notice.

Quiet areas: some progress

While quiet area policy has largely stalled in England, Lis Stedman analyses how quiet areas are progressing in Northern Ireland.

Fracking impacts unpicked at inquiry

The potential noise impact from fracking has been under scrutiny at a public inquiry in Lancashire. Lisa Russell reports.


March 2016 headlines


Guidance soon for housing?

Three bodies have joined together to plug the guidance gap on noise in new residential developments.

Crawley recreates PPG24 in local plan

Crawley has defined SOAELs and NOAELs and ‘rebuilt’ PPG24 in its newly adopted local plan. Failure by Defra to provide a policy lead on noise levels is pushing local authorities to make up their own guidance.

Back to court

A ‘bad neighbour’ development of new housing next to a pub is set to return to court.

Manchester Heyes

Cole Jarman has opened a new regional office in Manchester. It be headed up by Matthew Heyes.

No noise

Defra has released its five year plan and strategy to 2020.

Clay pigeon appeal fails

The High Court has upheld a council decision to allow clay pigeon shooting to continue in a field near Gloucester without tight conditions.

Unbundle airspace and runway plans

A consortium of aviation protest groups have come together to demand Prime Minister David Cameron imposes a moratorium on future airspace changes.

Gatwick landings scrutinised

A furore over changes to landing patterns at Gatwick Airport led to the commissioning of an independent report into arrival flights. It includes a recommendation for aircraft dispersal rather than concentration as is often proposed in recent airspace reviews.

Airspace hearing

Residents some distance from Gatwick have seen large increases in overflights following changes in flight paths. They argue that there are significant impacts which have not been properly considered and are seeking a Judicial Review of the changes.

Fracking appealed

Fracking firm Cuadrilla’s appeal against refusal for fracking near Blackpool is underway.

New barrier

Transport for London air quality cash will be used to build a noise barrier in the East End of London.

Triple echo

A resident has been found guilty on three counts of breaching an abatement notice at Bexley Magistrates Court.

Monitoring costs council £60k

A public meeting has revealed that North Devon Council has had to pay over £60,000 to monitor a noisy wind farm near Barnstaple.

Fullabrook noise is ‘explained away’

The controversial Fullabrook wind farm now appears to comply with noise conditions.

Durham houses dismissed due to noise fears

A housing development in Bishop Auckland has been refused due fears that incoming residents might complain about existing industrial noise.

Sunday trading

The Government will devolve the power to extend Sunday trading hours to local areas following a consultation.

Dog decade

A decade of dog barking problems has resulted in a court fine for an Ashford (Kent) resident.

In Parliament

MP Ruth Cadbury tabled a Parliamentary Question: “whether the Government has used the methodology in his Department's WebTAG guidance to assess the annual cost of aircraft noise on health in the UK each year”.

Noise makes you fat?

Danish researchers believe that exposure to traffic noise could lead to an increased risk of becoming fat.

Dose-response distorted by air quality

Canadian researchers carried out interviews amongst 600 residents and have found that noise annoyance can be distorted by air quality.

Noise linked to mental health problems

German researchers have uncovered a link between noise and mental health.

Action week 2016

Modest funding has been found to repeat Noise Action Week in 2016. It will take place between May 23rd and 28th.l

Directive discussion

Consultation closes soon on a public survey intended to inform the future of the EU noise directive.

School noise

DCLG is consulting on technical changes to the planning regime.

Private Bill

MP David Davis has introduced a ten minute rule Bill into Parliament dealing with wind turbines.

January/February 2016 Issue 99

Report clear-out reveals SOAELs

Defra has cleared out a backlog of important research reports.

Desperate councils seek guidance

Two councils unable to use nuisance legislation to silence wind turbines have appealed to the Government for guidance.

Decision delay

Government has confirmed the widely expected decision not to decide on a third runway at Heathrow for a further six months (Noise Bulletin December p3).

Directive abolition?

Europe has reached the public consultation stage as it ponders the future of the European Noise Directive.
l The survey can be viewed on

New TAG: don’t count tranquillity

A new Transport Analysis Guidance (WebTAG) module has been updated to incorporate Defra-released guidance on the valuation of transport-related noise, covering a range of different impact pathways and transport modes.

Shooting fine

The owner of a hotel in Oxfordshire has been fined £1,500 after breaching an abatement notice which had been issued following complaints about noise from clay pigeon shooting.

£1000 dog fine

A Towcester dog owner has been fined for a third time after ignoring official notices to stop his dogs barking and causing a nuisance to his neighbours.

5dbA below background too loud

A high profile ‘emergency’ generating station in Bristol has been refused planning permission mainly on air quality grounds – but noise considerations contributed to the refusal.

Police closure

A nuisance property in Kingsdown, Bristol has been closed down due to “excessive noise” and antisocial behaviour nuisance.

Cockerel fine

Rochford District Council successfully prosecuted a Rochford resident after complaints from neighbours regarding a breach of a noise abatement notice served under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 in relation to cockerels kept at the property.

Turbines overturned at appeal

The High Court has reversed planning permission – and at appeal – for two small wind turbines in Denbighshire.

Electric leisure boats protect quiet areas

Danish boatmaker RAND Boats has unveiled its latest quiet electric picnic boats.

Health not considered

Government aviation policy fails to properly consider health effects of noise, a new report suggests.

Brownfield first

Government is now consulting on making it easier to pack more affordable homes onto urban brownfield sites (Noise Bulletin November 2015 p1).

Gatwick flightpaths

A decision to amend Gatwick flightpaths is to be scrutinised in the Appeal Court.

Airspace changes considered unfair

An independent report has criticised the CAA on flight path changes.

Low cost noise barrier trialled in Norway

Aluminium panels are to be fixed below standard metal crash barriers to partially reduce noise. The panels must flex – such crash barriers are designed to yield on impact to absorb energy from an out-of-control vehicle.

Noise attitudes revamped

Successful piloting of a new format for the regular noise attitude surveys is opening the way for more topical questions on issues such as entertainment. Lisa Russell reports.

More attitudes uncovered

Lis Stedman looks at a second study on noise attitudes as Defra has a clear out of reports intended to further our understanding noise

December 2015 Issue 98

Wales warns on lack of LOAELs

Planners in Wales have been reminded by ministers that NEC bands in its TAN11 planning guidance remain in force and are necessary.

Smart M4

Noise arguments have been heard at an inquiry into plans to increase capacity of the M4 motorway between J3-12 west of London.

M1 housing appeal probes sealed windows

Noise and air pollution from the M1 motorway will dominate discussions at a forthcoming planning appeal near Northampton.

Heathrow back in the balance

As Noise Bulletin went to press, it appeared that a decision on Heathrow expansion is once again set to be delayed.

£11,000 fine

Magistrates at Bexley have told former company director, Paul John Moran, to pay over £11,000 for his part in persistently flouting noise abatement notices while he owned The Bank restaurant.

Six shortlisted

A design contract worth up to £2 million has been awarded to WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff to trial six shortlisted ‘innovative’ noise barriers.

Anglesey and Brighton win

Two local authorities have won John Connell Awards for good practice. Anglesey Council and Brighton were both cited by the Noise Abatement Society at last month’s ceremony.


Northern Ireland environment minister Mark Durkan called for views on options for an independent environmental protection agency.

Finland infrasound

Finnish wind farm protesters have released a report claiming that turbines create infrasound.

School design guide

The Institute of Acoustics and the Association of Noise Consultants have jointly published a new design guide for the acoustics of schools.

Fracking called in

Fracking in Lancashire is to be decided by Westminster – not local planners.

Vanguardia get Turner

Former Defra noise lead Stephen Turner has taken on a part-time non-executive director role with Vanguardia Consulting.

Nuisance action drags on

An ongoing ‘noisy neighbour’ nuisance action against a wind turbine drags on years after a notice was served.

Airspace approved

The CAA has approved major changes to the airspace in the South East proposed by NATS as part of the ‘London Airspace Management Programme’ (LAMP). The decision is the first major development as part of the ‘future airspace strategy’ (FAS) which aims to create more capacity.

Luton rapped over airport noise

Luton Borough Council has been criticised by the Local Government Ombudsman for failures on dealing with Luton Airport noise.

Warwick criticised on stairlift

Warwick District Council has been criticised by the Local Authority Ombudsman for failing to properly handle a DIY noise complaint.

Night team cut

Another night time noise service has been scrapped.

Pubs v. people: the battle continues

Balancing the rights of nightclub owners and incoming neighbours looks set to become an increasingly thorny topic. Lisa Russell considers the potential issues

Turbine thumping: a counter view

The report of a group of experts gathered to counter the ‘establishment’ IoA wind turbine working group was never going to prove comfortable reading. And so it proved, finds Lis Stedman

House sale problem

Noise has been found to be a ‘dealbreaker’ that could scupper a house sale.

November 2015 Issue 97

Mayor pushes nightclub change

Moves are afoot in London to try to solve the problem of incoming residents complaining about existing noise from nightclubs. The London Mayor wants to introduce an ‘agent of change’ principle.

Track approved despite court win

Planning permission for a noisy Cumbrian rally car test track has been endorsed by High Court judges – but only after noise conditions had to be re-written with costs awarded against Allerdale Council for failing to properly consider noise.

PDR permanent

Permitted development rights (PDR) have been made permanent following a three year trial.

Brownfield boost

A clause in the proposed Housing Bill will see automatic planning consent for residential development on brownfield land in a bid to boost housing starts.

Wales maps

Welsh Government has set out thinking behind the next round of mapping.

EU benefits?

The Environmental Audit Committee is holding an inquiry to assess the extent to which EU environmental objectives and policies have succeeded in tackling environmental issues in the UK.

Noise policy ‘woeful’ says IoA

The impact of noise has been “woefully underestimated”, the Institute of Acoustics has told the Government.

Davies noise points challenged

Four councils have jointly released a report criticising assumptions made in the recent Airports Commission recommendation to expand Heathrow Airport.

MPs analyse Heathrow ‘envelope’

The Environment Audit Committee is investigating arguments for expanding Heathrow.

More, bigger, lower, concludes PA report

PA Consulting has been brought in to analyse problems with Heathrow plane routings. Trials of new routes led to an unexpected high number of complaints.

Heathrow rebuttal

Former Airports Commission chairman Howard Davies has rebutted criticism over his Heathrow recommendations.

News from the IoA’s autumn conference held in Harrogate

Noise benefits double

£50m has been earmarked to tackle noise over the next five years – and new Webtag assessment guidance has doubled the benefits of treating road noise hotspots.

SOAELs and NOAELs defined?

The Noise Policy Statement for England sets out noise policy in England in terms of LOAELs and SOAELs (low and significant observed adverse effect levels) – but failed to say what the numbers are.

Railway noise

Harry Jones of the University of Southampton suggested that railway noise may be more of a problem than previously thought.

Perkins updates IoA on Decc contract

Richard Perkins of Parsons Brinckerhoff updated the IoA conference on the latest on research into wind turbine amplitude modulation. Wind turbines featured for over a quarter of the entire autumn conference agenda.

Mapping: work in progress

The latest review of the Environmental Noise Directive has found that its introduction has been worthwhile but that there is still work to be done to reap all the benefits. Lisa Russell reports.

Quiet areas and the directive

Very few quiet areas have yet been designated in Europe. Nevertheless, a lot of groundwork has been carried out between the two rounds to define what constitutes a quiet area, develop selection criteria and – in the case of a few member states – produce good practice guidance.

Quiet areas and tranquillity

Quiet area planning gets a boost as ‘maps’ (now in the form of freely available data) become more versatile, Lis Stedman reports

October 2015 Issue 96

Camden club wins flats battle

A Camden nightclub has succeeded in a High Court battle to prevent a nearby development of flats.

AM: yet another study awarded

Another contract has been let to try and end planning disputes on wind turbines.

Aarhus update

A Ministry of Justice consultation sets out how costs can be capped in environmental trials.

Fracking push

Decc has set out further reporting mechanisms to identify planning authorities that take too long to determine fracking applications, which may have noise impacts.

EU Directive reviewed

Preliminary thoughts have been released on EU noise policies.

Davies disappointed on noise commission

Airports Commission chair Sir Howard Davies has expressed disappointment that plans for a noise commission have been ignored.

Sharps appoints

Kieran Gaynor has joined Doug Sharps and Ian Sharps at Sharps Acoustics.

NI plans

Northern Ireland has released a new Strategic Planning Policy Statement for Northern Ireland ?Planning for Sustainable Development? (SPPS). It includes an effective presumption against fracking, which has prompted noise concerns on mainland UK.

Stansted changes

Stansted Airport is proposing new departure routes to cut noise impacts.

Flawed assumptions

The Mayor believes that many of the noise assumptions of the Airports Commission were flawed.

Baker win

Daniel Baker of consultant MAS Environmental has been awarded the CIEH President?s ?Junior Researcher of the Year Award 2015? for his paper entitled ?Application of noise guidance to the assessment of industrial noise with character on residential dwellings in the UK?

Extrium viewer for English maps

England has a new viewer for round two noise maps.

Data explanation

Defra has published a guide to strategic noise map data.

Surge in road noise needs action

The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) says action is needed to tackle a ?surge? in road noise.

Top ten London

CPRE has also used its new map to rank worsening of noise in London green spaces.

Wales resource

Welsh Government?s has released a new Natural Resources Policy Statement which contains many mentions of noise and some mention of tranquillity.

Navitus Bay offshore turbines canned

The huge Navitus Bay offshore wind farm has been turned down by the Government.

Noise indicators reviewed

The Department of Health has consulted on updating the Public Health Outcome Framework (PHOF). Views were gathered on all 200+ indicators, including noise.

NI consults on quiet areas

Northern Ireland is consulting on designation of quiet areas. Just five are outlined.

London aviation noise rises in 2014

A rise in the number of aircraft in 2014 led to increasing noise from some of the three main London airports, official statistics reveal.

More from Euronoise!

In the second part of our report from the huge Euronoise conference, we look at the myriad of topics discussed during the summer event. Here, many uncertainties still surround the health impacts of transport noise and new research seeks to fill the gaps.

Aug/Sept 2015 Issue 95

Fast track fracking – or else

Ministers are to fast track fracking applications by obliging planning authorities to hurry up.

Motocross challenge fails in Surrey

A judicial review against planning permission for a motocross track in Surrey has failed.

Supercar sanctions

Noisy supercars in Knightsbridge are to be controlled via a Public Space Protection Order.

Fenland Tigers back in court

The landmark Fenland Tigers motocross noise nuisance case has once again been in the Supreme Court – this time about costs.

Bad neighbour judicial review fails

A pub has failed in its bid to see off a housing development fearing future complaints.

MPs launch Heathrow probe

The Environmental Audit Committee is holding an inquiry into the implications for Government commitments on carbon emissions, air quality and noise should the Airport Commission’s recommendation of a third runway at Heathrow Airport be adopted.

Steeper flightpaths

Heathrow is to trial a steeper landing approach as part of a ‘ten point blueprint’ for noise reduction to cut noise.

Wales grants

The Welsh Government is urging community groups and third sector organisations to bid for small scale project funding (£1,000 to £15,000), including projects to tackle noise and air pollution and create tranquil green spaces.

Greenwich fine

The Royal Borough of Greenwich has successfully prosecuted a Greenwich husband and wife for causing an on-going noise nuisance.

Tranquillity threatened

CPRE says the decision to expand Heathrow is flawed and threatens tranquillity over a wide area of south east England.

Not a mention

Defra’s annual report has been released. Noise and nuisance are not mentioned once.

‘Independent’ reports released

The first three reports from the ‘independent’ amplitude modulation wind turbine working group have been published.

Bill to force nuisance liability on turbines

MP David Davis wants to make onshore wind turbine operators liable for noise complaints in a Private Member’s Bill.

Just turn it on.....

NTi Audio’s XL2 Sound Level Meter has a newly-available “locked run” mode of operation.

Shorter hours

A consultation is underway on Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea proposals that would reduce the permitted number of hours noisy construction work can take place in the borough during the week, and prohibit noisy work on Saturdays. This would mean that contractors would no longer be able to carry out demolition work, piling or drilling, which are audible at the site boundary, on the weekend.

IoA probe flawed?

The anti-wind Renewable Energy Foundation has criticised the Institute of Acoustics consultation on amplitude modulation (Noise Bulletin May p1).

Noise complaint indicators released: patchy map

Defra has released a compendium of environmental indicators. Noise complaints – based on CIEH surveys – appear static but a regional breakdown is shown.

Common mapping

Legislation enabling a new European common mapping method has come into force. Directive 2015/996 replaces Annex II of 2002/49/EC and follows on from the CNOSSUS scrutiny of common mapping methods.

Noise and air independent

It is known that noise and air quality exposure both contribute to ill health effects but it is very hard to tease out differences because exposure maps look very similar for both pollutants. There is a large risk of confounding.

Europeans talk noise

Euronoise gave the opportunity for noise policy to be put into both a European and wider context through presentations on latest developments in topics including the END and the WHO guidelines.

Policy lessons from the noise-aware Dutch

Euronoise delegates heard about projects under way in the Netherlands to take forward a new noise mitigation programme that combines noise-reducing pavements, noise barriers and insulation of houses along existing routes.

Aircraft annoyance compared

A session on airport noise and its management produced some topical papers – ISVR’s Ian Flindell presented on two issues, with Rod Self, Antonio Torija and Athanasios Synodinos on estimating variation in community noise due to variation in aircraft operations, and with Paul Le Masurier on a combined qualitative/quantitative approach to the design of noise annoyance studies.

July 2015 issue 94

Planning guidance takes shape

New professional planning guidance (dubbed ProPG) being mooted by acousticians could be based on four acoustic levels - but it must not be confused with scrapped PPG24 noise planning policy guidance

Railway to be served nuisance notice

Stirling Council is stepping up action against railway operators for noise near Alloa.

Brownfield boost

As NB went to press, the Chancellor removed the need for planning permission on brownfield land.The implications of unregulated residential development in noisy urban areas will be of concern.

Fracking fail

Two fracking wells in Lancashire have been refused on noise grounds despite officers recommending approval.

Fight goes on

Protesters say the Airports Commission decision in favour of Heathrow is far from the end of the story. Heathrow has been chosen despite huge noise impacts.

Par houses okay

A planning inspector has overturned Cornwall Council's refusal of 44 homes next to a China Clay works and railway line in Par.

London noise lifts stroke risk

London researchers believe that there is evidence - albeit weak - that noisy traffic reduces life expectancy.

Notice withdrawn for dog noise

Thanet District Council has withdrawn a noise abatement notice following claims that the notice was incorrectly served and evidence had been tampered with.

US noise costs $4bn

A study suggests a 5dBA reduction in ambient noise could cut £4bn in health costs.

Turbine impacts understated

A retrospective study of ten wind farms has found that noise impacts can be underestimated at the planning stage.

Offshore guide gone?

A good practice guide originally aimed at noise from offshore turbines could be dropped by the Institute of Acoustics following misuse.

HS2 go ahead

The incoming majority Conservative Government has confirmed that HS2 is to go ahead. HS2 includes considerable spending on noise mitigation.

Hotel refused on appeal

An Ilford hostel has been told it cannot convert into a hotel because of noise from a nearby nightclub.

MUGA appeal fails in Sussex

A High Court challenge to the relaxation of noise conditions

ANC winners

Winner of last months ANC awards environmental category was consultant Hoare Lea for work on numerical environmental noise monitoring.

Waste fine

A Devon wood waste company has been fined £20,000 for failing to deal with noise pollution.

Tenant jailed

Birmingham County Court has given a custodial sentence of 20 weeks to a city council housing tenant for continuously breaching his anti-social behaviour order, originally served for causing noise and nuisance to his neighbours.

Wind turbine commission suggests noise

The Australian Senate select committee on wind turbines has issued an interim report recommending a formal probe on noise health impacts.

Racetrack moves to judicial review

Planning approval to allow a country house estate to build a new racetrack in its grounds have gone to Judicial Review.

Model aircraft noise monitored by Svantek

Svantek has supplied a compact, lightweight SVAN 971 sound level meter to the British Model Flying Association (BMFA) where it is being used to help assist clubs with environmental noise related issues and to ensure the long-term protection of model aircraft flying sites.

Subsidy cut and plannng  becomes local

Wind farms are to have their subsidy cut. and local plannng authorities can now object

NI Etsu probe?

A Parliamentary Question in Northern Ireland suggests doubt on the future of Etsu for assessing wind turbines.

NI Etsu probe?

A Parliamentary Question in Northern Ireland suggests doubt on the future of Etsu for assessing wind turbines.

Noise no bar to Heathrow growth

Overwhelming noise and air quality disbenefits from expansion at Heathrow have been trumped by the economic arguments, finds Lis Stedman

Commission releases noise and health effects review

Along with the general conclusions of the main report, the Airports Commission released a thinkpiece on aircraft noise and health compiled by Charlotte Clark of Queen Mary's London.

Fracking noise gets political

Noise was a key factor in Lancashire County Council's recent refusal of applications involving shale gas extraction by fracking. Lisa Russell looks at the issues involved.

June 2015 issue 93 

Theme park ‘not annoying

An urban extension in Cornwall is set to go ahead despite objections from Flambards theme park which fears that screaming tourists would give rise to complaints from occupants of new houses.

RES put on ‘notice’ over Den Brook

Protesters have ‘served notice’ on Den Brook wind farm developer RES that they will continuously monitor excess noise if the farm is built.

Fracking U-turn

Stop Press: as NB went to press noise objections to fracking in Lancashire appear to have been overcome.

FAA revisits aviation annoyance onset

The US FAA has launched a major study looking at possible changes in the impact of aviation noise and annoyance.

Heathrow appeal underway

Heathrow Airport is appealing against Hillingdon’s refusal to grant planning permission for limited expansion of the existing airport.

Flight path changes cause continued worry

Aviation pressure groups have come together to have a say in future flight path changes.

Acoustic camera updated

Norsonic has released new software for its Nor848a acoustic camera which is available in different size arrays. The camera dish comes in 0.4m, 1.0n and 1.6m diameter sizes.

CPRE renews tranquillity plea

CPRE has repeated its call for tranquillity in the face of continued threats to build new homes on green belt land. It has carried out a survey of authorities – very few councils have tranquillity plans in place.

Bunds to cut noise from Mallory Park

Bunds and noise fencing aim to cut 10dBA noise from Mallory Park race circuit in Leicestershire.

Open source model ready for beta testing

MAS Environmental is putting the finishing touches to a new website offering simple online noise modelling – free of charge.

Wind now local

The incoming government’s Queen’s Speech has signalled changes to onshore wind planning procedures through a new Energy Bill.

Airbnb change

Legislation is being introduced to bring London into line with the rest of the country in terms of short term lets.

Sharps staff

Consultant Sharps Redmore has three new members of staff this month, Lee Bearman, Emily Brown and Stephen Jay.

Connells return

The John Connell awards will be repeated this year. The awards were paused in 2013 but ran last year.

AM model out

Software has been released to predict amplitude modulation from wind farms.

Horizontal update

Environment Agency H3 Horizontal Noise Guidance has been updated to reflect the new version of BS4142.

Dairy refusal

An Arla megadairy near Aston Clinton, Bucks, has failed in its bid to overturn a planning condition to install a noise bund and replace it with trees.

Campbell Cup

Consultant Bickerdike Allen has once again won the Campbell Associates annual Acoustic Cup.

Welsh grants

Welsh Government has announced a new approach for issuing grants to local authorities for air quality, noise and tranquil green space work.

Turbine talk in Glasgow

So much is happening on wind turbine noise that it supports popular international conferences. Jack Pease reports from last month’s busy Glasgow wind turbine noise conference.

US noise costed

A US study has suggested that a 5dB reduction in ambient noise could yield an economic benefit of $3.9bn.
Researchers tried out a ‘new’ approach to costing noise by placing environmental noise in context with other pollutants.

Down but not out

Noise Action Week was muted as austerity bites – but still some were able to summon up enthusiasm. Lis Stedman reports.

Big fine

A Birmingham man who repeatedly breached noise abatement orders by playing his music loudly at his Handsworth home was found guilty in his absence of two offences under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court.

May 2015 Issue 92

Three choices for AM

IoA wind turbine experts have put forward three methods for rating amplitude modulation from wind farms.

Lack of assessment detail prompts refusal

Lack of proper information on noise has contributed to refusal of an anaerobic digester at a pig farm in Duns, near Berwick.

Cotton Farm probe

The controversial Cotton Farm wind farm is to be investigated by a council.

£2,300 for noisy dogs

A woman who left her two dogs to bark so excessively that her neighbours felt like moving out of their home has been ordered to pay £2,320 after appearing before magistrates at Bury St Edmunds.

Defra guide to noise options

Defra has posted a guide aimed at explaining to the public how noise nuisance should be dealt with by local authorities.

NPL devises potential calibration method

The National Physical Laboratory (NPL) has developed an optical method for remotely measuring sound pressure inside a fully anechoic chamber which is the first to provide direct traceability to the SI base units.

Flight path frenzy prompts new forum

Heathrow Airport has set up a new community noise forum including representatives of the airport, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), National Air Traffic Control (NATS), British Airways, local authorities, community organisations and campaign groups. 

Kildare separation

County Kildare in Ireland is considering introducing a 1.7km separation zone for wind turbines.

Jukes down

CIEH chief executive Graham Jukes is to step down following 15 years at the organisation.

NI premises review

Northern Ireland is consulting on changes to entertainment licensing.

£2,000 penalty

A King’s Heath resident has been fined £400 with £1700 in costs by Birmingham Magistrates Court. 

Saunders joins

Dan Saunders, previously with Bruel & Kjaer, has joined consultant Vanguardia.

Taller turbines

A wind energy task force has proposed taller turbines.
There are fears that yet-taller turbines would worsen noise impacts when there is wind at high levels but calm conditions at ground level reducing the masking effect of wind.

Clean bill of health?

A huge Canadian Federal Government study says there are annoyance impacts from wind turbines but doubtful evidence of direct health effects.

....yet another clean bill of health

Canadian medical experts have come to similar conclusions to the non-related large government study reported above. But experts say there may be some health effects resulting from turbine noise.

Election prompts demands

Noise campaigners representing different organisations came together to call on the next Government to take noise seriously.

Statutory notices plummet in CIEH survey

Local authorities are once again being asked to contribute to the annual CIEH survey of noise nuisance. Results feed into the Department of Health’s Public Health Outcome Indicator on noise – latest results show a sharp drop in numbers.

Noise action week looms

Noise Action Week 2015 is imminent – it runs from May 18th – 23rd.

Winds bids in

Tendering has closed for the Decc review of wind turbine amplitude modulation

Night fight

Stop Stansted Expansion urged recent election candidates to support a ban on night flights at Stansted.

Complaints cost money

Experts know that it is far easier to avoid complaints in the first place – now following a freedom of information request some value has been put on the cost of dealing with them, finds Lis Stedman

Who complains, and where

An independent survey has tried to uncover the regional pattern of noise complaints, reports Lis Stedman

Short-let noise timebomb

Legislative changes and a recent court case about short-term letting have focused attention on the potential for neighbours to suffer from noise when holidaymakers party loudly. Lisa Russell looks at the issues involved with sub letting along the lines of AirBnB

April 2015 Issue 91

£109m a year for nuisance?

A nuisance complaint costs local authorities up to £7,500, a Defra report suggests.

Action week may help?

Noise Action Week says highlighting noise issues could save money in the long run.

Licensing cuts ASB

A controversial £500 per year landlord licensing scheme pioneered by the London Borough of Newham may have cut anti social behaviour.

Noise barriers shortlisted for M40

Six proposals have been shortlisted in the second phase of a competition to design and produce a cost effective, innovative noise barrier, Highways England has announced.

Mayor directs City Airport refusal

London Mayor Boris Johnson has blocked plans for expansion of London City Airport because of noise concerns.

1,150 ‘mitigations’ by 2020

Highways England has taken over from the Highways Agency. Highways England will work to a series of ‘operational metrics’ including noise and other environmental constraints.

Probe into AM runs late

Decc’s promised review of amplitude modulation appears to have stalled, it was revealed during Parliamentary questions

Noise remains a problem across Europe

Noise remains a problem across Europe, an important pan-EU state of the environment report suggests.

Cobbing to Arup

Colin Cobbing has joined the leadership team of Arup’s UK acoustics business.

Levy amended

Amended supporting guidance for licensing authorities on the late night levy has been published.

Dig the Moles

Svantek has launched the MOLES (Miniature Outdoor Logging of Environmental Sound) system.

Big numbers

Some 1.1 billion teenagers and young adults are at risk of hearing loss due to the unsafe use of personal audio devices, including smartphones, and exposure to damaging levels of sound at noisy entertainment venues such as nightclubs, bars and sporting events, according to WHO.

Nuisance tested in High Court

The legal value of an environmental health officer’s opinion has been tested in the High Court.

Regulator could limit thwarting of fracking

Fracking will have local impacts – including noise – says an industry task force. It suggests there should be a shale gas regulator.

ANC awards

Entries are invited for 2015 Association of Noise Consultants Excellence in Acoustics awards.

Overzealous Pickles?

Epuk and CIEH have written to communities secretary Eric Pickles with a Freedom of Information request, asking for evidence to support his statement that “Too many town halls have been over-zealous in trying to silence church bells and village clocks which have chimed for decades, if not centuries”.

Entertainment dereg

Entertainment licensing has been further deregulated.

Military bangs sink log cabins

A leisure complex of 12 log cabins has been turned down at appeal because of excess noise from a military firing range. Holidaymakers would be exposed to too much noise and complaints could close down the facility.

Stansted flight fight

Pressure group Stop Stansted Expansion continues its fight against amended flight paths.

Inspector overturns refusal despite 30-fold traffic increase

A planning inspector appears to have understood the subtleties of low background noise, amenity and nuisance but then agreed plans for 114 homes despite extra traffic noise from a 30-fold increase in traffic in a quiet cul de sac. 

New runways cause headaches

Feature: Responses published to Airports Commission runway plans near London

What value sleep?

A new report discusses how to put a value on five impacts caused by environmental noise from transport. Lisa Russell reports.

March 2015 issue 90

Sleep effects to be considered

A report has been quietly slipped out by Defra suggesting sleep disturbance must now be considered when considering environmental noise.

Northern Ireland seeks turbine review

Northern Ireland politicians say that noise assessment rules for wind turbines need reviewing.

Etsu endorsed

UK Government has once again been asked in Parliament to reconsider Etsu. It replied: “The Government takes seriously the impact of noise from wind turbines. Potential noise impacts are considered within the planning process in accordance with ETSU-R-97, and taking into account any guidance on good or best practice that the Government has published or endorsed, before any decision is taken.

Block on fracking: decision delayed

Lancashire planners have delayed a milestone decision on fracking. Earlier this year noise was a key part of the decision of Fylde Borough Council to recommend rejection (Noise Bulletin Jan/Feb p1).

Crowdfunded action

Cash-strapped organisers of Noise Action Week have turned to crowdfunding in a bid to fund this year’s activities.

Extra insulation for Heathrow

Just one day before consultation on airport expansion near London ended, Heathrow Airport has upped its offer to insulate homes where householders are bothered by aircraft noise. More generous grants may mean houses in south London could qualify.

CAA warns against ignoring noise nuisance

The UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has called on the aviation industry and decision-makers to be much more ambitious in confronting aviation’s environmental challenges – including improving compensation for communities – or else face the prospect that essential additional runway capacity may never be built.

MPs study aviation noise

MPs have scrutinised noise at Heathrow Airport. An all-party Parliamentary inquiry culminated in a 76 page report on problems and possible solutions to aviation noise.

Regulation benefits

Noise is the third most cost-effective area of regulation within Defra, a report suggests.

Noisy processions

Scottish Government has studied the impact on the community of public processions. Some 67% have expressed annoyance over noise.

Noise and air

US researchers have tried to disentangle health effects of a busy freeway.

Average hides industry noise

A housing development has been approved at appeal with the consultant citing WHO guidelines which downplay industrial noise impacts. 

Motorsport noise petition triggers response

A petition calling for waivers for motorsports venues against incoming complainers has drawn sufficient support to demand a government response.

Ride quiet

For any local authorities hoping to take part in Noise Action Week and keen to tackle the issue of noisy off-road motorbikes,

WHO assessment underestimates

A study in an academic journal compares various assessment methods including World Health Organisation guidelines, BS8233 and BS4142. The findings reflect issues such as the planning case (see news, left) where experts play off metrics against each other.

Open source model promising

Air pollution modellers have used the open source (free) ‘R’ software to model noise exposure. They have found over one million people are exposed to noise over 65db.

Green walls can cut noise impacts by 15dBA

Spanish researchers used recycled boxes filled with coconut fibre, acting as ‘soil’ in a green wall intended to cut noise. They were all planted with Helichrysum thianschanicum, a popular shrub for gardening in the Mediterranean region, with an average height of 40 cm.

Den Brook fails High Court application

Den Brook protesters have been rebutted by the High Court. Protesters had sought permission to challenge the weakening of a planning condition intended to prevent amplitude modulation at a proposed wind farm (Noise Bulletin December p4).

Four year term

An elderly man has been given a four year prison sentence for stabbing a neighbour following an argument over noise.

Car cruise injunction arguments explained

Lawyers have analysed the High Court endorsement of an injunction issued by four Black Country councils against noisy car cruisers.

City airport agreed

Newham Council has agreed to grant planning permission to expand City Airport in East London.

New branding for Campbell Associates

Campbell Associates has rebranded – and announced the date of its popular annual charity fund raiser.

Noise Attitude Survey reveals decreasing tolerance

People are less tolerant of noise than they were in 2000 and many head off to quiet areas for a break. Lisa Russell looks at the implications of the newly published National Noise Attitude Survey 2012

Noise across Europe

The EEA’s eponymous report on noise in Europe 2014 throws up some interesting statistics, the most widely-reported being that around a quarter – about 125 million – Europeans could be exposed to levels of road traffic noise above legal guidelines.

January/February 2015 issue 89

Noise set to block fracking

High profile fracking operations near Blackpool may be thwarted because of noise.

Landlord is responsible for party house din

A court has dismissed an appeal against the Borough of Poole’s decision to issue a Noise Abatement Notice on a residential property in Sandbanks used as a party house.

More annoyed

As Noise Bulletin went to press, Defra released the long awaited Noise Attitude Survey.

Another turbine case hits the High Court

A High Court battle rumbles on and has growing parallels with the landmark Jane Davis/Deeping St Nicholas case (Noise Bulletin December 2011 p1).

‘Sensations’ linked to turbines

An in-depth study of residents’ ‘sensations’, monitoring data and turbine operational characteristics has uncovered possible causes of annoyance.

…while Canadian study fails to find effect

A study by Health Canada suggests there is no link between wind turbine noise and ill health.

No health effects, says review of reviews

An academic journal review of wind turbine noise suggests wind farms do not cause health effects due to infrasound.

Be Noisewise

Mary Stevens, formerly of Epuk, and Gwyn Mapp, formerly of Bureau Veritas, have jointly set up a noise policy website Noisewise.

Simulation ‘vague’

A report for DfT has analysed public attitudes towards the compensation procedures and noise consultations for the HS2 high speed railway.

NI closure

Northern Ireland’s dedicated noise website has closed.

ASB review

Consultation responses have been published following the Scottish review of the anti social behaviour noise regime. The noise provisions which came into force in 2005 introduced a fixed penalty notice for domestic noise offences for any part of the day or night.

Decision trends

Wind turbine consultant Dick Bowdler has tabled an analysis of key issues presented at wind turbine inquiries.

HS2 bung

Compensation has been increased for those living near the line of the proposed HS2 high speed railway line between London and Birmingham.

Guidance tackles bad neighbours?

Important changes have been made to planning practice guidance on noise. Changes affect nuisance and planning.

Road and rail NPS released

Noise features in a new National Policy Statement for National Networks. The NPS sets out overarching planning policy for highways and rail infrastructure (but not HS2 which is being taken forward under a Hybrid Bill).

Noise becomes KPI in roads plan

Noise has been included as a key performance indicator in Highway England’s business plan.

Turbine group criticises Pickles bias

RenewableUK says a report by the Communities and Local Government (CLG) Select Committee, shows that Secretary of State Eric Pickles is picking on wind turbines.

M40 test bed

The Highways Agency says it is looking for new ideas for noise barriers. It will focus on the M40 near High Wycombe – where there has been a long standing campaign to reduce traffic noise (Noise Bulletin Oct 2013 p4).

Needham in

Simon Needham has joined Atmos Consulting’s acoustics and noise team, headed up by principal consultant Emma Parsons, to meet a growing demand for assessment work, both as stand-alone projects and as integral parts of comprehensive planning applications and environmental chapters of formal EIAs.

Mapping journal

A new open access journal specialising on noise mapping has been launched.

Patchy reporting across Europe

125 million Europeans could suffer from noise above recommended guidelines – but this could be an underestimate because of poor reporting.

Noise report prompts High Court showdown

Planning permission has been quashed by the High Court because a planning authority failed to make public a noise report.

BB93 revised

Building Bulletin 93 (BB93) has been revised. It covers minimum performance standards for the acoustics of school buildings.

Lewis leaves

Huntingdonshire EHO Toby Lewis has joined consultant WSP.

Wind yield tool

A new modelling tool allows onshore wind developers to identify the best way for maximum energy output while fully complying with noise limitations.

Pressure builds on bad neighbour laws

The public seem baffled that a person can knowingly move next to a noisy business and then complain about it. Lis Stedman reports

Talking about thumping

 Competing initiatives are under way in a bid to move forward the understanding and hence management of noise caused by amplitude modulation from wind turbines. Lisa Russell finds out whether there could be a consensus.

Dramatic reduction in amplitude modulation?

Acousticians at Hoare Lea were surprised by the extent of the reduction in AM that was achieved by alterations to the turbine blades at sites that were causing complaints.

December 2014 Issue 88

Roads plan cuts 1,150 hotspots

The Autumn Statement outlined Government plans to spend £15bn on new roads in England.

More details emerge on three runway options

The Airports Commission has released a more detailed appraisal of the three remaining runway options for South East England.

AM conditions: third study promised

The Government has finally caved in to pressure to investigate wind turbine amplitude modulation (unexpected thumping) and possible planning conditions.

Stop press: party house and landlord liability

As NB went to press, a magistrates court in Bournemouth ruled that landlords and agents (in this case of a party house in Sandbanks) are liable for noise nuisance from their tenants. More next month.

Scottish guidance

Following a petition, Scottish Government will prepare guidance on good practice community engagement methods for wind proposals.

The Cambridge three

Cambridge City Council has prosecuted three people for breaching abatement notices.

Kids affected

The German Federal Environment Agency has released advice on noise for schoolchildren, highlighting that one in eight have some form of hearing impairment.

Homes sunk due to noisy m’way

New housing next to the M6 motorway in Cheshire has been refused on noise grounds. Some of the homes were just metres from the busy motorway.

Mental health care home allowed

An appeal has thrown out suggestions that shouting from residents of a mental health hospital could be sufficient to refuse planning permission.

Railway nuisance action contemplated

Stirling Council says rail noise at Alloa amounts to a nuisance. But railways are generally exempt from nuisance enforcement.

Navel gaze looks forward

Defra has belatedly released a report mulling over what might or might not happen about noise in the future.

Office-to-home fears raised

The Mayor of London and planning bodies are arguing that technical changes to the planning system that will see an end to the ability of authorities to exempt themselves from permitted development right relaxations.

Ombudsman finds council needed an expert

The Scottish Public Services Ombudsman has told East Ayrshire Council that it should have got expert external help if it was unable to fully understand noise arguments on a wind turbine.

Crossrail – the sequel

Consultation has started on safeguarding land along the route of Crossrail 2.

Sound advice

Welsh Government has updated its Sound advice on noise leaflet to include advice on new anti social behaviour powers.

Sedgemoor gets tough

Police forced entry into a property in Bridgwater where there had been repeated complaints of excessive noise and breaches of an enforcement notice.

Fullabrook breaches limits

The Fullabrook wind farm is breaching noise limits at seven out of eight monitored locations.

Appeal against condition fails

Protesters have failed to overturn planning permission for a wind turbine on grounds including noise.

High Court confirms Den Brook condition can be amended

The High Court has agreed that a council can change noise conditions on a wind farm despite them being imposed by a previous High Court hearing. 

2013 air traffic rise leads to more noise

Rising aircraft numbers has led to a modelled increase in noise in 2013.

Stansted changes are not welcomed

Flightpath changes at Stansted have not been welcomed by locals.

Heathrow concessions

Consultations have already prompted concessions from Heathrow which has offered an enhanced compensation package which includes an offer to buy homes in villages in close proximity to a new runway at 25% above unblighted market value

Housing & health

The usually regulation-shy US has released new healthy housing standards.

More barriers please

A report by environment and transport groups including the Campaign to Protect Rural England and the Campaign for Better Transport is calling for £3bn to be invested over the next five years in a range of ‘green retrofit’ improvements for existing roads.

ANC’s proposed certification scheme

The ANC is considering introducing an optional certification scheme for its members, said Jonty Stewart of Wight Noise and Southampton Solent University, who chairs the ANC certification committee.

BS4142 is finalised

All 943 comments on the draft of the new BS4142 have been pored over and the standard is now out. Lisa Russell reports.

Midnight lawn mowing is now possible?

The Grass Group was present at the awards to further the cause of its interesting Infinipower mower, which is claimed to be virtually silent.

John Connells return to reward excellence

Back after a break last year, the Noise Abatement Society’s John Connell awards provide glitzy recognition of good work on noise. Lis Stedman reports

November 2014 issue 87

Rival group set up to fight AM

An independent expert group has been set up to form a workable planning condition and methodology to deal with wind turbine amplitude modulation.

New anti social powers kick in

New powers have come into force that provide additional powers to deal with anti social behaviour including noise.

Judicial review

As Noise Bulletin went to press, wind turbine amplitude modulation was back in the High Court.

Elmbridge win

Elmbridge Council in Surrey has won this year’s Noise Abatement Society John Connell local authority award.More details of winners and runners up next month.

WHO chime test

Church chimes have been spared despite busting WHO ‘limits’.

Cattle prompt housing refusal

Noise from a prized Aberdeen Angus cattle herd has contributed to a refusal for a 19 home development in Worcester.

Acousticians failing

A US hearing expert says those complaining of low frequency noise from wind turbines have been let down by acousticians and learned bodies.

Share good practice

Environmental Protection Scotland is currently creating a repository of ‘noise wins’, i.e. best practice and successful outcomes to noise problems. 

Channel 4 plea

Channel 4 is making a pilot for a new series on dispute resolution. It is looking for people who are currently in dispute with a neighbour who may benefit from having their case looked at by a professional mediator and arbitrator (effectively a private court). Email

Summers winter move

Steve Summers of Anderson Acoustics has joined growing consultancy Accon UK.

Noise eviction

A woman has had her New Forest home repossessed and has been given a five-year Anti-social Behaviour Order (ASBO) after a catalogue of noise and abuse against her neighbours.

Waste planning

Detailed planning practice guidance for waste in England has been revised replacing PPS10.

IoA publishes AM group terms

The Institute of Acoustics has published the terms of reference and scope of work of its wind turbine amplitude modulation working group.

Government defends policy change

The Government has defended its recent policy change that has led to a number of wind farms being refused permission.

20m turbine notification

Scottish Government is consulting on improving good practice for neighbour notification for wind turbines.

Wales pollution staff suffer

Welsh local authorities’ ability to deal with noise and other local pollution has been disproportionately affected by cuts.

Plane toolkit

Arup is funding PhD research aimed at delivering a better understanding of noise related issues for airport stakeholders and affected communities, with one of the key outputs anticipated to be a noise illustration and communication toolkit. 

Joint effort

Airbus, British Airways (BA), Heathrow Airport (LHR) and NATS have launched a partnership to study and develop operational procedures to reduce the number of people affected by noise at Heathrow.

END under review

The European Noise Directive is under review.

Amber Valley secures £5,000 dog fine

Amber Valley Borough Council has successfully brought a prosecution against a Heanor man who has continued to allow his dogs’ barking to be a nuisance to his neighbours.

Flight paths – concentrate so polluter pays

Consultant Gwyn Mapp says that concentrating aircraft flight paths should make it easier to apply the ‘polluter pays’ principal.

IEMA guidelines arrive at last

Our feature reviews and explores the new IEMA guidelines on noise assessment

Busking noise

This feature reviews busking noise and what local authorities and regulators are doing about nuisance

October 2014

issue 86

Free school need overrules noise
Noise objections against a proposed free school in Buckinghamshire have been overruled by the Secretary of State.

Aviation lobby mourns loss of PPG24
Aviation interests have warned that the withdrawal of PPG24 leaves a policy vacuum that is leading to housing developments in areas where aircraft noise may be annoying.

Tideway decision leans on NPSE
Noise impacts featured in the decision to approve the Thames Tideway wastewater tunnel in London.

Den Brook again
Den Brook wind farm is back in the High Court with local protester Mike Hulme judicially reviewing the local council’s decision to retrospectively weaken a planning condition limiting amplitude modulation.

Permittng Info requirements
Guidance has been updated by the Environment Agency to help applicants provide the necessary supporting data for noise impact assessment predictions to support industrial activities. The information sits alongside H3 horizontal guidance on noise.

Boris Island rejected
The Airports’ Commission last month rejected plans for a new airport in the Thames Estuary. ‘Boris Island’ was promoted by the London Mayor mainly due to the noise benefits of a remote hub airport compared to an extra runway at Heathrow.

Bad neighbour objections to homes overuled
425 homes have been approved despite being near noisy industry.

Glasto checks on noise
Noise measurement specialist Richard Wilson of The Event Safety Shop used Cirrus equipment to monitor occupational noise levels at the 2014 Glastonbury Festival.

Alarm code = off
Regulations have been laid to repeal the official code of practice on burglar alarms as part of Government drive to cut red tape.

Consultancy growth
The latest report from business intelligence and market research firm Environment Analyst finds that the UK environmental consultancy sector expanded by 5.2% in 2013.

Private nuisance explored
A resident has been refused a protective costs order to enable a court action against a noise and dust nuisance for an opencast coal mine in Wales.

Landlord liability for nuisance tested
Further analysis of the recent costs decision in the Coventry v Lawrence speedway Supreme Court case (Noise Bulletin August/September p4) suggests the case may prove useful in setting out a landlord’s liability for noise nuisance from a tenant.

Northern Ireland adapts English policy
Northern Ireland has adopted a noise policy similar that used in England.

IEMA at last
IEMA guidelines on noise have been finally published – nearly 20 years after they were started! More on the Guidelines in Environmental Noise Impact Assessment next month.

Busking guide
Liverpool is the latest city to produce a code of practice for busking.

Make some noise
A publican’s body has launched the Make Some Noise campaign in a bid to fight nuisance actions which threaten the closure of noisy venues.

Mapping journal
A new open access journal specialising on noise mapping has been launched.

Fullabrook: 2yrs and no data
Residents near Fullabrook wind farm are still awaiting results of noise monitoring over two years since turbines started operating prompting noise complaints (Noise Bulletin October 2012).

Shipdham: Leave noise to nuisance laws
Excess amplitude modulation from wind farms can be adequately dealt with through nuisance legislation, communities secretary Eric Pickles has said. But impact on tranquillity has helped sink a wind farm proposal.

Cornwall: No AM?condition – no permission
A wind turbine has been turned down because no amplitude modulation could be agreed.

Permission granted without AM condition
A wind farm has been approved by the Secretary of State despite causing excess noise for three households.

Last two notes
The final two supplementary guidance notes for the Institute of Acoustics’ good practice guide on wind turbine noise assessment have been published.

Environment diluted
DG Environment is being amalgamated with other departments as part of the Juncker review of European governance.

Noisy trucks
The Association of Noise Consultants (ANC) believes that relaxing lorry speed limits will lead to more noise.

Speakers boosted
Epuk has boosted topics at its forthcoming conference to be held in Aston on the 16th October. Topics now include action on noise and health.

Ireland win
A project in Ireland has won the European Soundscape Award 2014 for its work on acoustic planning and urban sound design. The prize was presented by the European Environment Agency (EEA).

Focus falls on aircraft tracks
A series of apparently technical consultations on where planes fly were not expected to cause controversy. But then people some distance from airports realised they might be badly affected, finds Lis Stedman

Guide to boost quiet areas
The recent publication of new guidance on quiet areas is helping local authorities around Europe gain fresh impetus in identifying and protecting them. Lisa Russell reports

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August/September 2014 issue 85

Experts ignore no-guidance plea
Experts have come together to produce planning guidance on noise – despite Government saying it does not welcome third party guidance.

Arsenal loses on appeal
Noise was at the forefront of a High Court planning appeal from Arsenal football club which is seeking to hold more pop concerts.

Kirklees cuts back
Kirklees Council is streamlining its noise complaint procedures.
It says increasing numbers of noise complaints were taking a long time to investigate and “did not consider the customer experience of the person complained about”.

Wetherspoon opts out
Discount pub giant Wetherspoon says it is to avoid paying late night levies by closing pubs early.

Ecohouse refused due to turbine
Planning permission for an ecohouse close to a wind turbine has been refused on appeal. The judgment centres on the dilemma of protecting amenity while allowing sustainable development.

IoA commence turbine thumping probe
The Institute of Acoustics has set up a group to look at wind turbine amplitude modulation.

Turbine approvals subside due to Pickles
CPRE has called for more planning guidance as it notes that turbine approvals have slumped by 20%. But it says that the approval rate has dropped only because so many are being called in by Communities Secretary Eric

Taylor confirms Govt input
Giving evidence to the Parliamentary High Speed Rail committee last month, noise expert Rupert Thornely-Taylor has confirmed Government was involved in putting numerical values on noise annoyance.

Noise annoys
A survey by noise insulation firm Saint-Gobain Isover, suggests more than a quarter of UK homeowners say they suffer with noisy next-door neighbours, but fewer than half have attempted to resolve the problem themselves.

Concrete din
Villagers living next to the concreted section of the A417 in the Cotswolds have produced a report on the impact of the noisy road.

Wind notes out
Supplementary guidance notes on Etsu wind turbine assessment have been finalised by the Institute of Acoustics.

Court report
Martin Court has joined Sharps Redmore on a full time basis. He has previously led on noise at Tendring Council’s environmental health department.

Call-in justification
Government has justified its extension of additional scrutiny powers for onshore windfarms.

£800 fine
A tenant of a Greenwich council flat in Woolwich, has been fined £800 for playing loud music. Following complaints from neighbours,

Low-tech mitigation...
Straw bales have been used at the Ravenstonedale Festival in Cumbria to cut noise nuisance.

... as high tech barrier nears market
Sonobex, a newly formed technology spin-out from Loughborough University, has won funding from the Technology Strategy Board, to bring its SonoBarrier acoustic fences to market.

Fenland Tigers back in Supreme Court
The landmark Fenland Tigers motor sport noise case has been back in the Supreme Court.

Night-time rollover
Consultation on rolling forward the existing night flight regime at London airports has concluded with the Government agreeing to the move.

Dreamliner may be (genuinely) quieter
The Boeing 787 Dreamliner has been monitored and appears “significantly” quieter than planes such as the 767 and A330 that it will replace.

More planes less noise
Heathrow Airport says it has independently shown that a third runway would be quieter.

Indoor listening to outdoor sound
Simulations produced by acousticians at Arup have been used to give people along the planned High Speed Two (HS2) rail route an idea of how the trains will sound. Lisa Russell reports.

US lawsuits tackle noise
Americans are notoriously quick to use the courts. Lis Stedman finds out how US law deals with noise

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July 2014 issue 84

NPPG helps sink biogas bid
A biogas plant has been turned down on appeal because of traffic noise impacts.

Defra to go?
News is emerging that Defra’s noise team is to be halved from the current estimated six posts.

No mention of noise in research strategy
Defra has released its strategy for research. Noise, nuisance and amenity are not mentioned once.

GLA to stage ‘rescue’ of PPG24?
Further alterations to the London Plan will be discussed in front of an independent planning inspector on 1st September.

Hacan disputes Heathrow will be quieter
A future expanded Heathrow will not be quieter than now as the airport claims, says protest group Hacan in a new report.

In the shadow of Heathrow
Three videos have been chosen to share £15,000 of prize money for the best Heathrow anti-third runway film.

John Connell’s restart
Following a break in 2013, the John Connell noise awards will once again be revealed at Westminster on 5th November.

CAA health update
The CAA has produced a report to update findings of its 2013 aircraft noise and health report (Noise Bulletin March 2013 p6).

New homes standard?
BRE has unveiled plans to develop a voluntary sustainability standard for new homes that will allow developers go beyond minimum regulation and provide increased choice for the consumer.

LAeq’s v Lmax argued in court
Westminster has lost its bid to refuse noisy supermarket deliveries following a High Court challenge.

Pavement seating rejected in Judicial Review
Noise concerns were at the centre of a High Court dispute over permission given to a restaurant with pavement tables.

Arup scoops ANC award
Arup Acoustics’ work on the High Speed 2 – Sound Demonstrations (HS2) project has won the environmental acoustics award category of the Association of Noise Consultants’ (ANC) annual awards scheme.

Election winners announced by IoA
Monitor equipment expert William Egan (pictured right) takes up post as president of the Institute of Acoustics.

Four airports get B&K WebTrak
Manchester Airports Group has taken on a new Airport Noise and Operations Monitoring System (ANOMS 9) from Bruel & Kjaer.

BV Burton
Nigel Burton has joined Bureau Veritas as technical director to lead the acoustics and vibration group in the London Bridge office.

Student competition
Environmental Protection UK?is holding a student prize competition with £500 on offer for a winning paper on noise, air pollution or land

NATS consults
NATS is consulting on changing the use of existing departure routes from Stansted Airport.

Health discussed in Japan meeting
Lis Stedman reports from the ICBEN Noise and Health meeting held in?Japan

Noise Action Week
Despite the cuts, Lisa Russell finds innovation and determination among local authorities ensuring that Noise Action Week continues to get the message across.

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June 2014 issue 83
Runway proposals tabled
London Mayor Boris Johnson has stepped up pressure against runway expansion at Heathrow.

Den Brook simmering
Arguments are continuing over the disputed amplitude modulation (thumping) condition for the proposed Den Brook wind farm in Devon. Protesters are warning that they may resort to a Judicial Review.

Smartphone apps could be fit for purpose
An academic study has compared various smartphone apps as a means of monitoring occupational noise.

Anti social noise rethink
Scottish Government has put out a call for evidence to support a policy review of the noise regime under the Antisocial Behaviour (Scotland) Act 2004 Part 5. The Noise Act-style powers allow issuing of fixed penalty notices against fixed noise limits for domestic nuisance.

ANC shortlist released for noise awards
The shortlist for the 2nd Annual Association of Noise Consultants acoustic awards has been revealed.

Mallory Park notice
Councillors have agreed the terms of a noise abatement notice to control Mallory Park racetrack nuisance.

Barking judgement
A Burntwood resident was fined £300 for breaching a noise abatement notice.

Cumulative noise sinks turbines
A Scottish Borders wind farm has been refused by Scottish ministers due to cumulative noise impacts.

WebTAG updated
WebTAG assessment modules have been updated.

Belgian Bart
Cirrus Research has appointed Bart Buermans as its new European export sales manager as part of its strategic expansion across the continent. He was previously sales manager

Noise Opex rises
A Government survey of environmental protection expenditure shows that in 2012, the latest available year of data, operational expenditure on noise rose.

Campbell Associates hosts charity Acoustic Cup
Last month acoustic consultancies gathered for the annual Campbell Associates Acoustic Cup 5-a-side football competition. 

CAA talks tough on noise
The Civil Aviation Authority  has released a policy thinkpiece on aviation noise with support for a noise tax.

Heathrow defends noise burden
Aviation is dominating the news at the moment – and will do so for many years as the Airports Commission is hit with ideas for three new runways. Lis Stedman reports

CIEH mulls over noise and health
Managing noise for better health was the subject of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health’s latest annual noise conference. Lisa Russell reports

Using mobile apps for noise nuisance cases   
Elmbridge Borough Council’s new mobile app is the latest stage in an initiative that began in 2008 with improvements to the online advice offered by the council and has continued with development of an online toolkit branded with eye-catching graphics as well as an earlier app.

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May 2014 issue 82

New nuisance powers
Powerful anti-noise nuisance possibilities within new antisocial behaviour powers are discussed in Parliament

Onshore wind freeze?
The Conservative Party has indicated that it will put a brake on onshore wind farm development.

Calm is the new preferred term for quiet
A European good practice guide on quiet areas suggests the term ‘calm’ is a better descriptor than quiet.

LFN found at Aussie windfarm
Internal measurements of wind turbine noise at an Australian windfarm suggest amplitude modulation (thumping) is present and may not be picked up by outdoor monitoring using recommended settings.

HS2 enters Hybrid Bill stage with new guide
The promoter of the High Speed 2 rail line from London to the north of England has released an information paper on noise. It includes definitions of LOAELS (lowest observed adverse effect level) and SOAELS (significant observed adverse effect levels) (Noise Bulletin December p1).

Turbine refused
North Somerset Council has refused permission for a 33m tall turbine on noise grounds.

NPPF under scrutiny
MPs are to investigate the operation of the National Planning Policy Framework in its first two years of operation.

Fracking relaxation
Exploration for onshore gas (essentially fracking) will be exempted from the need to obtain IPPC permits.

Dion din fine
A man who made neighbours’ lives a misery by blasting out Celine Dion’s My Heart Will Go On has had his sound equipment seized.

Smooth climbs change noise
Aircraft carrying out smooth climbs may increase noise in some places and reduce it in others, a CAA report suggests.

Flightpath concentration policy questioned
The policy of concentrating flight paths has come under scrutiny following complaints by Sussex villagers.

Exeter prosecution
Exeter City Council has prosecuted a resident for three breaches of a noise abatement notice.

Three LIFE projects to include noise research topics
Three EU LIFE projects covering noise issues have received funding, it has been announced.

Quiet delivery guidance out
DfT has released a package of guidance notes aimed at making it easier for firms to deliver at night if they do it quietly.

IoA raises fears on draft BS4142 code
The Institute of Acoustics has finalised its response to the proposed changes to the BS4142 noise standard which is heavily used in the absence of UK noise policy and planning guidance.

Soundscape award
The European Soundscape Award 2014, run by the European Environment Agency, is open for applications. The award aims to draw attention to the most innovative product, campaign, innovation or scheme solving a noise problem.

Legislation scrutiny
Government has published its terms of reference for the strategic long term review of environmental legislation.

New Cirrus GM
Monitor firm Cirrus Environmental has appointed a new general manager as it expands its UK presence with a new office in Cambridgeshire.

Duty cuts good
Fuel duty cuts are very successful, the Treasury claims – based on modelling which excludes ‘externalities’ such as air and noise pollution.

Tranquility theme rides high
Inclusion of tranquility as a factor in assessing the shortlisted airport expansion options is the latest proof of a rising awareness of the importance of safeguarding peaceful spots. Lisa Russell reports.

Automating data collection
Lis Stedman takes a look at using ‘cheap’ sensing to collect noise data prompted by Dublin's use of Intel environmental sensors

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April 2014 issue 81

Nuisance uncovered by FoIs
Churchill Insurance has carried out a huge exercise to establish the extent of nuisance across local authorities.

Hinckley rap for motor circuit noise
The Local Authority Ombudsman has found against Hinckley and Bosworth Council for failing to stop excess noise from the Mallory Park racing circuit.

Thumping notice
Aberdeenshire Council has served a noise abatement notice on a wind farm specifically requiring ending of amplitude modulation (thumping).

Airports probe tightens criteria
The Airports Commission has released its appraisal framework to support decision making for increasing runway capacity in the south east of England.

Gatwick runway plans out
Gatwick is consulting on plans for a second runway.

Watchdog progress
Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) has welcomed the pledge at the recent Aircraft Noise Summit to push for an independent noise ombudsman.

Buskers fail in Camden
The High Court has rejected an appeal against the London Borough of Camden’s plans to regulate buskers to cut noise nuisance.

Anti social in
The Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Bill has now completed its passage through Parliament and has become an Act. ).

Dublin monitored
Chip maker Intel is working with Dublin City Council to provide cheap noise and environmental monitors across the city.

Noise cost update
Consultant Ricardo-AEA has updated costs of noise. It has calculated the external costs of noise and other environmental pollutants arising from transport.

Guidance adopted with few changes
National Planning Practice Guidance on noise has been finalised.

Change of use
There were 852 responses to proposals to allow change of use of shops to houses.

BB93 consultation: responses encouraged
IoA members are being urged to respond to the Department for Education’s consultation on school acoustic standards.

World Cup extension
Government has consulted on bypassing Temporary Event Notices as a means of extending opening hours for the World Cup.

Noise agreement
The European Parliament voted in favour of a Commission proposal to bear down on vehicle noise.

Sound generator
Electric and hybrid electric vehicles will be fitted with sound generating devices to provide audible warnings for pedestrians/visually impaired persons.

Huddersfield fine
A Huddersfield man has been fined for playing loud music failing to comply with a noise abatement notice.

News from the IoA wind turbine meeting held in Wales

Focus falls on indoor noise
Wind turbines may cause low frequency noise problems, some delegates at the IoA wind turbine conference suggested, with the focus shifting from noise measured outside to that experienced inside.

Noise odd man out in turbine assessment
Noise is the odd man out in the environmental assessment process, consultant Dick Bowdler claims.

Proposed planning condition will fail
There was much debate at the IoA wind conference held in Wales last month about the efficacy of planning conditions aimed at dealing with excess amplitude modulation from wind turbines.

Good practice guide discussed
Etsu good practice guide working group chairman Richard Perkins of Parsons Brinckerhoff told the IoA conference that the group was unable to reflect the findings of the Renewable UK research into amplitude modulation

Den Brook again
Wind farm developer RES has resubmitted its application to amend a condition limiting amplitude modulation from the pro-posed Den Brook wind farm.

£3000 fine
A Redditch woman has been fined £3,087 for causing a noise nuisance to her neighbours.

Awards open
Entries are now open for this year Association of Noise Consultants acoustics awards which will be presented on 24th June. There are four categories covering architectural acoustics, environmental noise assessment, transportation noise control, and sound insulation Entries close on 23rd May.

Teams sought
Campbell Associates’ five-a-side charity football tournament is now in its third year and is seeking entrants. Acoustic-Cup2014

BS4142: key to noise assessment?
The committee behind the new draft BS4142 is likely to find itself sifting through a considerable number of comments if recent discussions among acousticians are an indication. Lisa Russell reports

Nuisance redefined?
Coventry v. Lawrence will become perhaps the most important precedent on nuisance for quite some time

Coventry v. Lawrence undermines wind farms
Consultant Gwyn Mapp has warned that the Coventry v Lawrence case will undermine the use of Etsu assessment of wind farms.

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March 2014 issue 80

Private nuisance defined?
An important and definitive Supreme Court decision has redefined the issue of whether planning permission can sanction nuisance.

BS4142 out for consultation
An update to BS4142 – which deals with industrial noise – has been released for consultation.

BS8233 finalised
Meanwhile BS8233 Guidance on sound insulation and noise reduction for buildings has been updated replacing the previous 1999 version.

£127k court costs
Redbridge Council has won a five year legal battle with a noisy Essex nightclub.

£1,000 bung for Gatwick noise
The properties most affected by a second runway at Gatwick would receive £1,000 a year from the airport as a sweetener to reduce objections to expansion plans.

London levy
Islington Council is the first London borough to introduce a late night licensing levy to help tackle crime and nuisance.

Noisy vehicles
The European Parliament has watered down the Commission’s proposal on noise emitted by cars, vans, trucks and buses.

Competence set out
The Government has concluded its review of EU laws and how they relate to the UK.

MUGA trouble hits High Court
The High Court has dismissed an appeal against granting of planning permission to a games area.

World Cup relaxation worries Epuk committee
The Epuk noise committee is concerned at the government decision to re-consider a relaxation of licensing laws during the World Cup this summer.

Hum notice
Highland Council has served an abatement notice on energy firm SSE.

£8,000 fine
A noisy late-night karaoke bar in East Putney has been ordered to pay more than £8,000 in fines and court costs after admitting numerous licensing breaches.

Heathrow four times noisier
An update to the Anase report claims that Heathrow is four times noisier than official figures suggest.

Magistrates given more leeway for high fines
Environmental offences in England and Wales are now covered by bespoke sentencing guidelines.

Airports appraisal
Protesters have argued against the Airports Commission’s draft appraisal framework document intended to help it decide where to increase capacity (Noise Bulletin Jan/Feb p2).

ASBOs applies to housing
New anti-social behaviour legislation has been changed and will now include provisions for dealing with nuisance in all residential settings.

RAF contours
Noise contours have been published for RAF Brize Norton as part of the MOD’s noise mitigation measures programme to reduce the effect of noise disturbance from military activities.

Aviation offer
Monitor firm Cirrus Environmental and Casper, a specialist aviation web-based visualisation and monitoring software firm, have announced a partnership on airport noise monitoring.

SLR buys HFP
SLR Consulting has bought North American acoustics firm, HFP Acoustical Consultants, which has offices in Houston, Texas, and Calgary in Canada.

Ministry of Sound wins noise fight
A scheme to build flats right next to a noisy nightclub has highlighted the difficulties of safeguarding both residents and existing businesses. Lisa Russell reports.

Action plans for England and Wales
Lis Stedman looks at English and Welsh Action plans

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January/February 2014 issue 79


Sealing-up solves nightclub row
The Ministry of Sound nightclub in London’s Elephant and Castle has been ‘saved’ by London Mayor Boris Johnson, the club claims.

Nuisance church clock partially silenced
In a situation which echoes the Ministry of Sound’s concerns about loan nuisance complainers invoking nuisance duties (see news above), a church has decided to stop its clock chiming overnight.

Blog beefs up
Noise Action Week preps In the run up to Noise Action Week, which has a health theme this year, there is now a regular blog on the NAW website and Twitter. Specialists are invited to contribute.

Runway options whittled down
An interim report by the Airports Commission has suggested new runways at Gatwick or Heathrow. An airport in the Thames Estuary remains an option.

Condition found to be legal in judicial review
A judicial review has failed to overturn a decision allowing building of a wind turbine in Northumberland.

Dog fine
Wolverhampton City Council has prosecuted a dog owner over continued barking despite issue of a noise abatement notice.

Twin study on noise
Finnish researchers studied twins to see whether noise sensitivity led to early retirement through ill health.

Speed limit may cut noise
A speed limit is being considered for a section of the M1. It is primarily prompted by air quality problems but it will also cut noise.

Wales retains NECs for planning
Wales has released details of its round two action plan on noise. Places such as Cardiff have set out additional quiet areas.

Fracking safeguards
Fracking could lead to some noise impacts, a strategic environmental assessment suggests.

Noise affects memory
Italian researchers have used innovative virtual reality techniques to test the impact of a new motorway – and associated noise – on the public.

Eire set to junk Etsu limits
The Irish Government is consulting on wind energy development guidelines. A consultation document signals a move away from variable limits based on Etsu towards a fixed 40dBA limit.

Cirrus launches Invictus
Cirrus Environmental has launched its Invictus portable noise monitor.

Lighter and tougher from Campbell Associates
Campbell Associates has developed a new kit which aims to bring a new versatility to remote environmental noise assessments.

NI gives partial endorsement to guide
The Northern Ireland Executive has given partial endorsement to the IOA’s Good Practice Guide to the application of ETSU-R-97 for wind turbine noise assessment.

Final wind turbine notes published
The IOA has published for consultation the final two supplementary guidance notes (SGNs) to support its A Good Practice Guide to the Application of ETSU-R-97 for the Assessment and Rating of Wind Turbine Noise (the GPG).

Wind condition necessary
The wind turbine industry body Renewable UK  appears to have caved in to pressure to contemplate a condition to deal with amplitude modulation. But at 5dBA, and based on Etsu assumptions, critics are not happy finds Jack Pease

A short history of noise policy
Noise policies across the years have been analysed in a report to Defra. Lis Stedman sees what the archives have to offer

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December 2013 issue 78

HS2 ES: 50,000 pages long

The Environmental Statement for the London to West Midlands High Speed 2 (HS2) line is out. It consists of 50,000 pages – many of which are on noise.

24 Acoustics solves museum ‘spin’ mystery

The mystery of a spinning statue at a Manchester Museum has been solved by consultant 24 Acoustics.

Record keeping leads to £1,500 rap
The Local Government Ombudsman has criticised Birmingham City Council for poor record keeping which led to continued problems from a noisy tenant.

Tigers in court
A controversial precedent defining how planning permission can permit nuisance is back in court.

Before and after turbine test
Scottish Government is funding a study comparing actual impacts of wind turbines compared to the impacts predicted in environmental statements. Noise, visual and shadow flicker impacts are being considered.

IoA dragged into ‘cover up’ row
The Institute of Acoustics has been dragged into claims of a cover up.

Complaint statistics inconsistent
A series of Freedom of Information requests have highlighted huge differences between London boroughs on how they record noise complaints.

Brize drop
Noise near Brize Norton airbase has dropped, an Amec report suggests.

Wind pre-consult
The Government is promising greater pre-consultation for wind turbines.

Dog injunction backfires on complainer
A homeowner complaining of nuisance noise from the flat above has lost his case and had to pay over £10,000 in counterclaim damages.

Policy review for NI planning
Northern Ireland is consulting on a noise policy statement (NPSNI).

Nuisance notices up in Northern Ireland
Complaints static, prosecutions down and notices are up – so says the latest noise complaint statistics for Northern Ireland.

Recognition for Swiss tyre campaign
A Swiss consortium of public and private partners led by The Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) won the European Soundscape Award 2013 for its communication campaign.

Deliveries fine
A meat firm in Birmingham has been fined £10,000 for night time deliveries which caused a noise nuisance.

Stewart questions role of ‘noise deniers’ “
Are climate activists the new noise deniers?” asks UK Noise Association chair John Stewart in issue one of a new newsletter published by UKNA.

Rollover for nightflights regime
Nightflights at London airports will continue. The Government wants to roll over the current regime for a further three years.

Ombudsman key to Heathrow expansion
London business lobby group London First says a noise ombudsman is needed if expansion at Heathrow is to go ahead.

Heathrow funds quiet outdoor classrooms
Heathrow Airport is spending £1.8m funding ‘adobe’ quiet classrooms in 21 local schools.

Annoyance compared
Swedish researchers have compared actual annoyance against annoyance predicted by European Noise digital noise maps.

LimA update
Brüel & Kjær’s latest version of its environmental noise mapping software, Predictor-LimA, is now

ASB: nuisance versus annoyance
Environmental health officers are worried by plans to give police and social housing officers powers to deal with noise. Lisa Russell reports.

Aviation responses revealed
Lis Stedman finds out who said what in response to plans to expand aviation capacity

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November 2013 issue 77

Planes cause heart attacks

Aircraft noise is associated with an increased risk of stroke, coronary heart disease, and cardiovascular disease. These are the conclusions of an important study reported in the British Medical Journal.

Noise prompts refusal near nightclub
A planning inspector has refused permission for new apartments near a Maidstone nightclub.

Etsu consult
As Noise Bulletin went to press, the Institute of Acoustics released supplementary Etsu guidance for consultation.

Newcastle first with night time levy
Newcastle upon Tyne is the first UK city to adopt a late night levy. The money will be used to ameliorate negative impacts including noise nuisance.

ANC makes noise on planning
A rushed session was squeezed in to the recent ANC Birmingham conference to discuss the latest ‘beta’ guidance on planning practice guidance (Noise Bulletin October p1|).

Four awards in inaugural ANC competition
Four firms were honoured in the first Association of Noise Consultants awards event.

ANC launches Green Book on measurement
The Association of Noise Consultants has formally launched its guide to noise measurement. Dubbed the “Green Book”, it complements the ANC Red Book on groundborne noise and vibration.

Dodgy Rions
The Association of Noise Consultants has warned of a spate of sound level meter thefts over the summer.

Firework gathering
Cirrus is gathering data on firework noise.

Big fine
York City Council’s out of hours noise team prosecuted a resident for playing loud rap music.

Asbo awarded
Cheltenham Borough Council was granted a full Asbo for a noisy resident.

Action plans outlined at Epuk
Defra noise specialist Stephen Turner told delegates at its annual conference held in Birmingham last month of progress on action planning and the new planning rules.

Quiet areas yet to take off
Defra admitted that to date there were no quiet areas identified under the European Noise Directive in England.

WHO update
WHO/Europe has confirmed it is updating the 1999 WHO Guidelines for Community Noise.

WSP appointment
Graham Hornby has joined WSP from Aecom, Australia where he was acoustics and specialisms leader.

Charges fail to cut plane noise
The CAA says that environmental charges on planes may fail to encourage airlines to use quieter and cleaner aircraft.

Winners and losers in airspace revamp
The National Air Traffic Control Service (NATS) is consulting on a revamp of aircraft routes near London. The aim is to concentrate planes onto particular routes to keep noise impacts together.

Airlines ranked according to annoyance
Heathrow Airport has ranked airlines by noise as part of its Fly Quiet programme.

Freedoms trial
Heathrow’s operational freedom trial reports have been released by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and Heathrow Airport and will be used as input into the imminent interim report into capacity due from the Airports Commission.

Airport responses
The Airports Commission has published responses to its consultation on new airport capacity.

Police tool up to measure noise
More details are emerging of the shape of the new anti social behaviour regime. A Bill is currently working its way through Parliament.

More entertainment licence deregulation
Consultation is underway on further deregulation to entertainment in England as part of the continued drive against red tape.

Scottish police move against noise
Scottish police have held a targeted campaign against anti social noise makers.

Party house crackdown
Brighton Council is once again planning to tackle the issue of party houses – residential premises let out for weekends to partygoers causing complaints.

Noisy neighbours raided at Redditch
Two Redditch households causing misery to their neighbours by playing loud music have had audio equipment seized after they ignored formal reprimands.

Greenwich acts
The owner of a persistently noisy dog in Abbey Wood, Greenwich, has been fined £400, and a Woolwich man was fined £2,000 for playing music too loudly, after two successful noise prosecutions brought by the Royal Borough of Greenwich.

Wind appeal ‘recovered’
Communities secretary Eric Pickles has endorsed a planning inspector’s rejection of a wind farm with conclusions on noise endorsed.

Solar points to wind change
Anti wind campaigners say the rejection of a solar farm in Suffolk is a further sign that Government may be turning against wind farms.

Approval for wind farm windshield
Wind can confound wind turbine assessments so Rion has obtained Class 1 Type approval for a new windshield.

Cirrus monitors noise from Bugattis
The Bugatti Owners’ Club (BOC) is using Cirrus monitoring to back up its own noise rules on cars competing at its renowned hill climb at Prescott Hill near Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.

New kit
Campbell Associates has developed the Nor-140 ENV K1.

Mapping guidance
The EU has published the common framework needed to assess noise from road, rail and air traffic and from industry in the EU.

AM dominates wind conference
Amplitude modulation was one of the big topics at a recent international conference on wind turbine noise. Lisa Russell looks through the papers.

Internoise draws the crowds
Nearly 1,000 papers were presented at Internoise 2013 held in Australia. Lis Stedman samples some of the talks in the first of our two part review

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Back headlines (2011 onwards)
Looking for a particular story? the ctrl F function (find) can be really useful





October 2013 issue 76

Planning guidance hits beta

New planning guidance on noise in England has been released in ‘beta’ form. When finalised next month, PPG24 will officially be retired forever.

Waste yard prompts council payments

Cumbria and Barrow councils have had to pay penalties to homeowners bothered by noise and odour from a waste facility.

Chimes code out

The revised ice cream van chimes code has been released.

NAW 2014 is on

Epuk’s 2014 Noise Action Week is on! 


School ventilation
Architect Pollard Thomas Edwards says it has used an unusual ‘earth tube’ system for a new school in Hounslow.

HS2 tranquillity loss mapped
The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) has created an online map showing noise impacts of HS2. CPRE is particularly keen to minimise noise impacts on the most unspoilt parts of the countryside.

Heathrow winners and losers
An independent report has concluded that night flight trials carried out earlier this year brought noise respite to approximately 100,000 people living under the Heathrow flight paths – but with disbenefits for others.

Mapp moves
Gwyn Mapp, previously of Extrium and Bureau Veritas, has formed his own consultancy company.

Crossrail win
Network Rail acoustics consultant Roger Dentoni has received the “Delivery Award” for “outstanding work on delivering the noise and vibration requirements of the Crossrail project”.

‘Too close’
A film has been released showing the impact of a wind farm on a US community.

Gatwick louder, little change elsewhere
Noise exposure was up at some London airports, 2012 indicators suggest.

Aarhus threatens wind power?
A European Court judgement prompted claims that the UK onshore wind turbine planning regime is illegal.

Turbine noise in real time
Noise from a wind farm can now be monitored remotely via the internet.

Den Brook retreat
Den Brook wind farm developer RES has withdrawn its application to amend a condition aimed at controlling amplitude modulation.

NHS health concerns
An NHS health board says wind farms may have health impacts. NHS Shetland has commented:

Racetrack closes: noise blamed
The Mallory Park racing circuit in Leicestershire has gone into receivership. The firm had been fighting a noise abatement notice and in August was fined £2,500 with £23,000 costs for breaching a noise abatement notice.

Wycombe barrier progresses
A feasibility study into the new M40 noise barriers which combine traffic noise mitigation with solar panels has been completed.

Busking guide
Cornwall Council has produced a good practice guide for buskers in Truro.

Noise complaints
An analysis by ReviewPro of online guest reviews for 5,683 hotels in 20 key tourist destinations reveals that noise is the number one most common complaint by consumers in all but one city.

Heathrow expansion warning
The London Assembly says expansion of airport capacity should not take place at Heathrow because of noise concerns.

Revamped Trojan
Cirrus Research has re-launched its Trojan noise nuisance recorder with new innovations included as standard. 

Measures assessed
Researchers have found that there are insufficient formal assessment methods for noise reductions measures such as noise barriers.

Planning. Less is more?
Draft planning guidance about noise issues in England is now online. Lisa Russell takes a look at the words (but not at the numbers – there aren’t any).

Wanted: advocate for noise
Policy announcements continue apace – who is going to stand up for noise since the weakening of Epuk, Lis Stedman asks?

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August/September 2013 issue 75

Quiet areas remain voluntary
Defra has unveiled the shape of the second round of noise action plans. The second round involves councils identifying quiet areas but action will be voluntary and not cause an additional burden (and feature)

Further appeal at noisy car site fails
A vehicle auction site in south Wales has failed to reverse a damages award following long running problems at its site.

Own website for Scottish EPUK
The Scottish breakaway arm of Environmental Protection UK has launched its own website.

Noise forgotten
Defra has published a report valuing local environment quality. People were prepared to pay most to cut litter and fly tipping and a moderate amount for quiet areas. Noise nuisance was excluded from the study.

Fracking safeguards mooted
Planning guidance aimed at the fracking industry warns that noise can be an issue and should be covered by conditions.

Government confirms Etsu
New planning guidance for renewable energy has confirmed that Etsu guidance must be used for wind turbines. It adds that separation distances should not be used in local plans.

Change of use
The Government is consulting on yet more relaxation to change of use requirements.

Chimes are needed, Defra told
Plans to deregulate the code of practice on ice cream chimes have been published. Despite the Government’s belief that ‘red tape’ is unpopular, all wanted the code to be retained.

Heat pump noise ‘far from settled’
The issue of noise from heat pumps is ‘far from settled’ says a report prepared for Decc.

Scottish standards handbooks updated
Scottish Government has updated technical handbooks on building standards for noise.

Nuclear noise
Sharps Redmore is carrying out environmental noise surveys around the proposed Sizewell C Nuclear power station site.

Levy agreed
Newcastle upon Tyne City Council has agreed to bring in a late night levy aimed to help finance increase police and council funding for enforcement and anti social behaviour activities.

Agency separate
The Environment Agency and Natural England should be retained as separate public bodies with separate purposes and functions.

AM arguments rumble on
Arguments continue over the proposed Den Brook wind farm and its proposed amplitude modulation (thumping) planning condition. Proposals for an amendment have been knocked back.

AM: judge for yourself
Consultant Mike Stigwood has added an ‘idiot’s guide’ to spotting amplitude modulation on his listening room experience website.

Further endorsement for turbine guide
Devolved regions have followed English Government support for the Institute of Acoustics good practice guide on wind turbine assessment.

Railway noise
The European Commission is consulting how railway noise can be reduced.

Infrasound dismissed
Recorded levels of infrasound do not appear to have changed since a new windfarm in Australia was built.

Runways here, there and everywhere
Airports have been setting out their cases for why they want an extra runway. Lisa Russell looks at the noise implications.

Vanguardia cited
Vanguardia has been recognised by the Design Council for work carried out on the London 2012 Olympics.

Scottish refusal
Scottish Government has refused planning consent for the Druim Ba proposed wind farm in the Blairmore Estate, near Drumnadrochit.

Peace at last
English adults made 2.85 billion visits to the outdoors last year with many seeking peace and tranquillity.

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July 2013 issue 74

Elvington knocked back again

There has been another court battle in the seemingly endless war between Elvington Airfield and York City Council.

Give councils anti social behaviour powers
Councils could tackle anti-social behaviour by tenants in privately-rented accommodation if given greater powers to force landlords to crackdown on tenants causing problems, says the Local Government Association (LGA),

Commission underestimates rural impacts
Gatwick residents have claimed that the recent Airports Commission’s discussion paper on noise (Noise Bulletin April p1) underestimates impacts in rural areas.

Connell pause
The Noise Abatement Society has announced a ‘pause’ in the John Connell awards. Instead of awards this year the charity will prepare a “best bits” document showcasing the best of the awards, which have run for 12 years.

Public nuisance clarified?
A premises licensing appeal has added some weight to the view that a single person’s noise complaint can constitute a public nuisance.

Dog prompts £4k fine
A Royal Borough of Greenwich council tenant whose loud music and barking dog blighted neighbours’ lives has been prosecuted for noise nuisance.

Pub fine
A Woolwich pub landlord was fined £900 for disturbing neighbours with loud gospel and afrobeat music.

NI round 2 plan
Northern Ireland has consulted on its round two noise mapping action plan covering industrial sources.

Cumulative impact argued
A council has conceded for a second time in the face of a Judicial Review of its decision to award planning permission to wind turbines.

Noise condition at heart of judicial review
Gedling Council has been defending itself at a Judicial Review. It had made mistakes with noise conditions for a wind farm and a group challenged the council’s decision to grant planning permission.

Listening in
A further wind farm has been added to MAS Environmental’s collection of recorded wind farm noises.

Noisy neighbour
Chelmsford City Council has successfully prosecuted a resident for three separate breaches of a noise abatement notice.

Optimus approval
Cirrus Research has recently obtained type approval for the Class 1 versions of the Optimus Red and Optimus Green instruments.

Temple win
Temple, together with RSK, has been awarded a £1.5m contract to provide environmental services to HS2 Ltd.

Agency separate
The Environment Agency and Natural England should be retained as separate public bodies with separate purposes and functions.

New Section 182 guidance published
The Home Office has published updated Guidance under Section 182 of th

Alan Saunders change
Clarke Saunders Associates is the new name of the acoustic consultancy practice headquartered in Winchester previously known by the name of its founder Alan Saunders.

Week of action wins through
Noise Action Week faced a challenging national start this year, with the major restructuring of Epuk that has left it as a semi-voluntary organisation with a diminished presence and effectively no budget.

Mapping helps health analysis
Forthcoming changes to noise mapping plus proposals for some new directions in research could give invaluable information about how noise exposure affects health. Lisa Russell reports.

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June 2013 issue 73

Wind turbine noise guide published
The Institute of Acoustics (IOA) has published its Good Practice Guide on wind turbine noise assessment.(special feature can be freely viewed here as it is so important!)

Midi turbine finally silenced
n what is thought to be the first action of its kind, nuisance action has led to a medium sized turbine being shut down.

New planning guidance for windfarms
The Government claims it will no longer ignore the environment when planning new onshore wind farms.

York late levy
York is considering whether to adopt a late night levy of nightclubs in the city.

Ennah finalised
The Ennah (European Network on Noise and Health) report (on noise and health) has been finalised.

High speed rail mitigation
A draft environmental statement setting out the likely impacts of the first phase of the High Speed Two (HS2) rail project between London, the West Midlands, Manchester and Leeds has been published for consultation.

Scotland told that Etsu is okay for turbines
Etsu provides a reasonable degree of protection against wind turbine noise, a report claims.

Wind probe
Campbell Associates has added the next generation environmental noise measurement system to its extensive hire fleet.

Patent win
Brigade Electronics has won a legal battle over its patented low-annoyance reversing alarm.

Acoustic Awards 2013
The ANC has launched a set of awards to promote and recognise excellence among UK acoustic consultants and raise the profile of the acoustics industry.

Heathrow ramps up noise plan
Heathrow has announced new initiatives on noise – and says it does not want mixed mode in the short term. Mixed mode offers capacity increases but removes programmed respite for overflown communities.

MPs propose airplane compensation probe
MPs on the House of Commons Transport Committee have suggested increased noise safeguards to compensate noise sufferers facing increased numbers of planes. They suggest a rapid review of noise compensation.

Anderson switch
Neil Anderson - founder of Anderson Acoustics – has left the company to work for himself again, trading as 7th Wave Acoustics l Neil Anderson email

Greene to ANV
ANV Measurement Systems, European distributor for Rion sound and vibration measurement systems, have appointed Charles Greene as UK sales manager.

Villa to Anderson
Sasha Villa joins Anderson to head up the new London Bridge office of the Brighton-based company. He joins from Temple Group.

AM condition to be overturned?
A planning condition endorsed by the UK High Court could be overturned.

RES fails to overturn condition in Dumfries
Wind farm developer RES has failed in its bid to overturn a noise condition imposed on its Glenchamber wind farm.

Another application
Banks Renewables is also seeking to remove an amplitude modulation condition attached to its Moor House wind farm development near Darlington.

Hyde Park simulation for Vanguardia
Vanguardia Consulting was asked to run simulations on a number of sound systems for use in Hyde Park to test coverage and controllability.

NI rules consult
Northern Ireland is consulting on an Environmental Better Regulation Bill. l regulation_bill_consultation_may_2013.pdf

Wind probe
ClimateXCHange- a network of Scottish academic institutions – is commissioning research on wind farm noise.

Big fine ....
An Emsworth resident has been fined a total of £3,576.37 in Portsmouth Magistrates Court for eight breaches of a noise abatement notice served by Havant Borough Council.

....Small fine
Pendle Council has prosecuted a noisy neighbour but secured only a £110 fine despite a long history of problems.

EU directives questioned
The UK Government is consulting on whether EU regulation on the environment is working – including mapping.

Some safeguards in regulation shakeup
Secondary legislation is being laid to enable a raft of planning changes that some fear will lead to increased neighbour noise nuisance.

Micro testing
Atmos Consulting’s growing noise team continues to expand its services by offering noise performance testing of micro wind turbines to meet the requirements of the Microgeneration Certification Scheme.

Heat pump vouchers
In a bid to boost use of domestic renewables, vouchers are being offered.

Expansion views
 Initial findings of the London Borough of Hounslow’s consultation on the expansion of Heathrow have found residents overwhelmingly against an expanded airport, but also against its closure.

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May 2013 issue 72


Infrasound: fuss and nonsense
A world renowned British consultant has told a US state senate committee hearing that claims that wind turbines caused infrasound were “hoo-hah, fuss and nonsense”. The outburst was immediately excused by the wind industry.

Planning revamp prompts wider separation
A major revamp of Scottish planning policy includes the possibility of wind farm separation distances and turbine-free areas.

Website switch
Defra has joined other government departments and switched its website to the standardised portal.

Soundscape entries needed
The European Soundscape Award 2013 is open for applications.

Expansion but less noise
Expansion of aviation over the next forty years will not increase noise, aviation lobby group Sustainable Aviation claims.

Noise in diabetes health link
Danish researchers believe that noise can lead to a higher risk of diabetes.

Nightflights plea
The London Assembly has concluded its investigation into Heathrow night flights (Noise Bulletin April p5) and wants them stopped.

Long term noise leads to sleep deficit
Long term night time rail noise has been linked to various health effects.

Open window nuisance: £10/day
Derbyshire Dales District Council has been criticised by the Local Authority Ombudsman for failing to take action over a noise complaint.

Turbine turmoil
A local council in Massachusetts has costed the removal of two turbines blamed for causing too much noise.

Nuisance contained in sentencing guidelines
The Sentencing Council is consulting on guidelines on penalties for environmental offences, including noise and abatement notices.

Heat pump regime revamp is delayed
The Micropower Council reacted with disappointment as the Government announced a delay until April 2014 of the domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), a policy originally due to be implemented three years earlier.

More centres to run IOA Diploma
Two centres – Colchester Institute and London South Bank University – will resume running the Institute of Acoustics' Diploma in Acoustics and Noise Control from the start of the 2013/14 academic year after gaps of two and 17 years respectively.

Studies debunk wind turbine syndrome?
Two studies have been released that claim to debunk wind turbine syndrome. The syndrome is claimed to be caused by low frequency noise affecting health.

Before and after study
The Australian EPA is undertaking a before and after study of the noise impacts arising from a wind farm.

Infrasound possible
An academic review of research cautions against saying that wind turbines cannot produce infrasound.

Setback for setback distances?
Milton Keynes tried to introduce a separation zone for wind turbines – and was taken to the High Court. Lis Stedman finds that there is some confusion as to who ‘won’

HHSRS minefield for noise
Few councils seem to be making use of the admittedly complex legislation that enables noise issues to be tackled as a hazard to health. Lisa Russell reports read the feature here.

April 2013 issue 71

Framework retains contour
The final aviation policy framework has been published – it has failed to listen to calls to change noise assessment methods.

Noise Action Week saved: May 20th-24th
Fix the dates in your diary – 20–24th May – the 2013 Noise Action Week is on!

Scotland to split from Epuk
The Scottish branch of Environmental Protection UK is to split from Epuk.

Diary sheets questioned in Parliament
A debate in the House of Commons has highlighted frustration over the use of nuisance diary sheets.

Quiet house at Ideal Home show
Quietmark – a Noise Abatement Society scheme – is behind a large quiet house aiming to showcase quiet technologies at the Ideal Home Show.

Hayes heaved out
Michael Fallon has replaced John Hayes as energy minister.

Noise levels as traffic counter
Spanish researchers believe they can use to street noise levels as a measure of traffic density. The system is claimed to be able to distinguish between the flow of cars, vans, HGVs or motorbikes/scooters.

Football for charity: more teams sought
Noise monitor supplier Campbell Associates is organising another charity five-a-side football tournament. Last year the event raised over £850 for Sport Relief.

Etsu concerns made public
An academic is describing Etsu as bad science and tabled his concerns directly with Decc for fear that the forthcoming IoA good practice guide on wind turbine noise will not reflect his concerns.

Weak personality blamed for disturbance
A study by psychologists, engineers and built environment experts at The University of Nottingham has found no link between the measured level of noise from small and micro wind turbines and reports of ill health.

Measuring individual car noise
Scandinavian research group Sintef, using Norsonic equipment, is carrying out a large research exercise to measure the noise from individual vehicles in a busy traffic stream.

Johnson joins
Paul Johnson has joined Vanguardia’s Knutsford office in Cheshire to help to grow the business in the north of England.

Government summarises framework replies
The Government has summarised responses to its consultation on the Aviation Framework.

Housing affects airport noise disturbance
Researchers interviewed a total of 4,861 people living near seven European airports, including London-Heathrow, in a bid to see what factors led to disturbance.

Big noise survey
A “Big Noise Survey” is being organised as part of a project which aims to raise the profile of the need for good acoustics in schools, and highlight the effect on teachers’ health.

NPPF concerns
The CPRE has reviewed the workings of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) one year on from its introduction in March 2012.

Night time noise debated
The London Assembly has heard from aviation and noise experts about issues to do with night flights.

Four-runway Heathrow contours mooted
The entire borough of Wandsworth could be subjected to aircraft noise if Heathrow is allowed to develop into a four runway hub, claims Wandsworth Council and the 2M group of councils opposed to Heathrow expansion.

Extra school costs
The London Borough of Hounslow says it is having to bear some of the cost of aircraft noise.

Overheating worsened
Aircraft noise will worsen classroom overheating as global warming takes hold, London Metropolitan University researchers say.

Cumulative impact assessed
Cities, suburbs and towns are increasingly adopting cumulative impact zones as one of their tools for keeping licensed premises in check. Lisa Russell reports.

Quest for health effects goes on
Noise and health once again hits the headlines, finds Lis Stedman

March 2013 issue 70

Planes prompt impact scrutiny

A raft of aviation announcements in recent weeks have included Heathrow studies which cost night time noise disturbance. Thresholds are taken down to 45dBA reflecting lower WHO night time noise disturbance guidelines.

Welsh publish round two noise maps

Welsh noise maps have been improved and are now posted with Google maps-style interactivity.

May launch for wind turbine noise guide

The Institute of Acoustics Good practice guide on wind turbine noise assessment is to be launched at an IoA one day conference on turbine noise in Bristol on 21st May.

MK wind challenge
As Noise Bulletin went to press, Milton Keynes Council was in the High Court defending a challenge to its wind turbine policy.

Arup wins again
Arup has once again scooped up noise contracts for HS2.

RES to amend AM condition

Wind firm RES is asking the local planning authority if it can amend a controversial condition put on the Den Brook wind farm approval.

Turbines not guilty on infrasound?
An Australian study claims that wind turbines do not cause infrasound.

Cardiff scrutiny says complaints serve as early warning
Cardiff Council has carried out a scrutiny into anti social behaviour and found that noise can act as an early warning for e

Spectacular pentangular
B&K has used a pentangular array (left) to take acoustic measurements of large wind turbines.

Planning key to quieter homes
The Noise Abatement Society and Rockwool have released a noise manifesto calling for urgent planning reform to include noise in building design. The initiative follows a noise ‘summit’ held towards the end of last year (Noise Bulletin December 2012 p4).

Mixed mode
Heathrow Airport told the recent London Assembly transport committee that it would not be pressing for introduction of mixed mode.

Noise violence
A number of cases have been reported where noise complaints have led to violence.

European weakening
Protesters have lamented a European decision that fails to clamp down on noise from new vehicles.

Health cash rise
Councils have been given more money than expected to pay for public health when responsibilities are handed over to them from April.

S.82 costs order overturned
Consumer noise complaint specialist Noisedirect has succeeded in overturning a costs order against a noise complainant.

Nuisance win
Noisedirect and barrister Simon Butler have been involved in another nuisance action, scoring an out of court settlement for damages from noise, smells and dust from a landfill site near Wigan.

App helps with acoustic tasks

Acoustassist has developed what is believed to be one of the world’s first ever multi-platform digital acoustics handbooks. It aims to provide acoustic reference and calculations “on-the-go”.

Noise camera
Campbell Associates has announced that the Nor848 Acoustic Camera from the Norwegian developer is now produced in three dish sizes to suit various applications.

Turbine distance
A Scottish homeowner blighted by noise from a medium sized wind turbine has launched a petition for increased notification distances for turbine planning applications.

Android app
The Noise Nuisance App is now available on Android.

50dBA sleep threshold
A study of over 7,000 Finnish public sector workers suggests that a threshold of 50dB Lnight for sleep disturbance for those with anxiety. For the general population it was 55dB.

NI sees complaints rise
There has been a 5.25% increase in noise complaints in Northern Ireland, government statistics show.

CIEH wades into guidance debate
Noise features in CIEH’s criticism of the Government’s planning practice guidance shake up.

Untangling noise and air pollution impacts
Researchers have tried to tease-out the confounding effect of noise and air pollution on health.

Pendle pair
Two noisy Pendle residents have been taken to court by Pendle Council for continuing to cause a noise nuisance, breaching a noise abatement notice twice.

Noise causes stress
Taiwanese researchers believe they have found a link between noise and human stress.

Plane noise
The international aviation body ICAO is developing an new aircraft noise certification standard.

Aviation health effects reviewed
Tucked into a new government consultation on night flights are two interesting CAA Environmental Research and Consultancy Department (ERCD) aircraft noise reports for the DfT, one of which pushes down the dBA threshold for night noise disturbance to new, low levels that reflect WHO guidance.

Heathrow Airport is to trial a new noise insulation scheme.
A Quieter Homes Initiative has been developed by Heathrow Airport following a consultation about the existing noise insulation schemes on offer and research into schemes offered by other major airports around the world.

Hosanna! Shrubs to the rescue?
Mary Stevens reports on an EU partnership project investigating novel solutions for quieter and greener cities

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Jan/Feb 2013 issue 69

Speed limit criteria include noise
New speed limit setting guidance includes advice on noise effects. Changes in traffic speed is claimed to have a marginal impact on noise.

Noise armoury strengthened in ASB bill
The Draft Anti Social Behaviour Bill has been published. Asbos will be replaced by measures that could make it easier to tackle noise nuisance and annoyance (Noise Bulletin July 2012 p8).

UKNA home survey
The UK Noise Association is conducting an online survey to find out more about sound insulation in dwellings.

Keon to Atmos
Emma Keon has joined Atmos Consulting’s acoustics and noise team as a senior consultant based in Edinburgh.

Noise guidance is needed
Advice on local environment issues should be retained, Lord Taylor’s review of planning guidance concludes.

New boss for IoA
The Institute of Acoustics (IoA) has a new chief executive. Allan Chesney replaces Kevin Macan-Lind who left abruptly last year (Noise Bulletin October 2012 p2).

Efficient is quiet
Transport pressure group T&E claims that fuel efficient cars are also quieter.

Plane change
Birmingham Airport is consulting on proposed changes to new flight paths needed for the opening of its runway extension in early 2014.

Judicial review reform
Over the Christmas break, Government consulted on making it more difficult to mount judicial reviews.

Low frequency noise is present
Assertions that wind turbines do not cause low frequency noise are being reassessed following publication of a ‘consensus’ report from Wisconsin, USA.

Amenity tested in High Court
Five wind turbines have been turned down following a High Court appeal by South Northamptonshire council. The turbines had originally been granted permission at an appeal but there were noise and visual amenity concerns.

HS2 opts for quiet construction
Noise has been thought about in proposals to build the HS2 high speed railway between London and Birmingham.

Appeal agrees noisy tonal turbine must be removed
A small turbine near Harrogate must be removed, an appeal states.

How to calculate health costs
European expert institutions – with the exception of the UK – have produced guidance on how to calculate health impacts of noise.

Moped tampering
TRL has investigated noise and air quality impacts caused by illegal modification of mopeds.

Anderson goes underground
Anderson Acoustics has been commissioned to carry out noise and vibration measurements on Crossrail’s western tunnels.

CadnaA updates to v4.3
CadnaA noise prediction software from Datakustik has been updated to version 4.3.

Methods compared
The favoured EU method for estimation population exposure to noise may give an overestimate.

Noise fine
A 23-year old Tilbury resident has been ordered to pay fines and costs totalling £275 after admitting breaching a noise abatement notice.

Wind guidance feedback
The IoA’s consultation on good practice guidance for wind turbine noise assessment drew almost 30 detailed responses. Lisa Russell looks through what they said

Getting rid of abatement zones
The Government is getting rid of red tape, little-used noise abatement zones were high on the list, finds Lis Stedman

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December 2012 issue 68

York yo-yo’s with Elvington
The City of York Council’s environmental protection team has been back in court yet again prosecuting a noisy racing circuit – and the long running saga is still not over.

North Devon windfarm confirmed as noisy
A huge north Devon windfarm has proved to be too noisy.

Separation spat
RWE Renewables has confirmed it is to challenge Milton Keynes’ plans for a 1m separation zone around new wind turbines.

Complaints soar in London
A number of indicators have emerged this month suggesting increased noise annoyance at Heathrow.

Noise contours rise
Heathrow and other London airports recently released their noise contours for 2011 – two show a marked worsening.

Night noise relief zones trialled at Heathrow
Aviation and anti-aviation interests have come together in a bid to trial night noise changes at Heathrow Airport and see whether noise relief zones could ease disturbance. A form of runway alteration is proposed – the same relief system which is currently vulnerable because of pressure to adopt mixed mode (both runway) operation (see above).

Operational freedoms
The Chancellor’s 2012 Autumn Statement is being accused of prejudging the outcome of the operational freedoms trial.

London councils 2M group reformed
A grouping of west London councils has been reformed in a bid to argue against further expansion at Heathrow Airport.

Open rotors annoy
A US report reviews next-generation ‘open rotor’ aircraft noise.

Sign up
Cities and organisations are urged to sign up to a declaration calling on the EU to increase the ambition for noise limits for new vehicles.

Autumn statement: more cuts
The Chancellor’s autumn statement contained a pledge to spend £5.5bn on infrastructure spending, change assessment rules, encourage inter-council cooperation and make more red tape cuts.

Significant infrastructure threshold lowered
The Government is consulting on extending the streamlined planning process for big infrastructure downwards to commercial and business development.

Permitted development consultation out
Detail is being added to the widely-trailed policy of relaxing planning regulations.

Planning integration
Government is consulting on new ‘one stop shop’ proposals for major infrastructure proposals in England.

New for old
Casella CEL is offering up to 30% off the price of new equipment to customers who exchange their old sound level meters and dosimeters.

Jail for noise
A man who breached his anti-social behaviour injunction on an Islington estate has been jailed for 16 weeks and may lose his council home.

Buildings are too noisy
New research commissioned by Rockwool among UK property professionals (a group of 206 architects, planners, estate agents and property developers) has found that they support action to reduce noise pollution in UK homes and offices, with almost two thirds (64%) saying the UK needs quieter buildings.

Vanguardia: Grand Prix
Vanguardia has been involved in racing car measurements at a recent Formula One Grand Prix.

Vibration worsens rail noise
Swedish researchers have analysed why railway noise can become annoying. Vibration can lead to worsened annoyance from set levels of noise.

Leicester fine
A nuisance neighbour who ignored notices to stop playing loud music at her home seven times has been ordered to pay more than £3,500 in costs and fines by magistrates.

Life assessment
An analysis has been published on the EU Life programme which supports environmental and nature conservation projects throughout the EU.

New software
Brüel & Kjær’s Predictor-LimA Type 7810 software for environmental noise calculation has entered its ninth version.

Motorcycle approval
International regulations have been agreed on how to certify new motorcycle noise.

£64k fine for Nottingham club
A city centre club in Nottingham has been fined £64,000 for ignoring warnings about noise levels.

Derby seizures
Derby City Council has carried out three seizures of equipment following complaints of excess noise.

No wind review
Climate change secretary Greg Barker says there are no plans to review noise regulations for wind turbines.

Awards for excellence 2012
Canny ideas that are helping local authorities be more effective in today’s tough times were among initiatives singled out in this year’s John Connell Awards. Lisa Russell reports.

Fears over the grim RIPA
What exactly are local authorities supposed to do when they are required to deal with statutory nuisance but are faced with legal uncertainty on collecting evidence, asks Lis Stedman

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November 2012 issue 67

HPA looks for noise role
The Health Protection Agency has proposed how it is to tackle its noise responsibilities. It wants to built up its noise capabilities and may even get involved in planning advice.

Defra starts ‘world’s largest noise map’
Noise mapping specialist Extrium is providing technical advice and support to Defra in the delivery of the second round of mapping for the Environmental Noise Directive (END).

Bill prompts fears
The proposed Growth and Infrastructure Bill which has had its second reading in Parliament may water down planning protection on noise.

£9k nuisance payout
A claim of nuisance against a vehicle garage has succeeded.

Building standards reviewed
Building standards – including those covering noise – are to be reviewed by panel as part of the Coalition pledge to cut red tape.

Planning plea
The London Assembly has called on the Mayor to oppose government plans to significantly extend permitted development rights and reject changes to planning rules.

Planning guidance in fast track review
Government is carrying out a rushed review of planning guidance.

Commission reviews future of EIA
The European Commission has outlined new proposals to streamline legislation on environmental impact assessments.

Appeals consultation
Government is consulting on the planning appeals process in England.

Nottingham fine
A nightclub in Nottingham has been hit with a £64,000 fine for ignoring noise warnings.

RIPA difficulties get worse
CIEH has warned that new regulations coming into force this month will make it even harder for councils to monitor nuisance neighbours.

Brighton tries HMO licensing to cut nuisance
Student noise is one of the reasons for Brighton and Hove council designating a Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) zone.

Pocket parks
The London Mayor is to part-fund some 100 “pocket parks” and to plant thousands more new trees in London by March 2015.

Young person award
Nominations are being sought for the Institute of Acoustics 2013 Young Persons’ Award for Innovation in acoustical engineering.

Minister on wind
A government energy minister has broken ranks to criticise onshore wind turbines.

Turbines affects mental health
Researchers believe that noise from wind turbines could impact on mental health.

Batworthy turbines allowed at appeal
A windfarm at Batworthy Cross in Devon has been consented but not without an argument about noise.

EEB makes suggestions for EU noise review
The European Environment Bureau has made a series of recommendations for the forthcoming revision of the European Noise Directive.

Regulation hit
Regulation, including environmental health, has taken the biggest hit in Welsh local authority cuts.

Worth to Cirrus
Cirrus Research has appointed Kevin Worth as business development manager.

Noise behind killing
Noise has been blamed for a killing in St Helens.

Turbines & health
An ear specialist has written a paper explaining why wind turbines can cause low frequency noise and why they can be hazardous to health.

Plane noise back on the agenda
The Department for Transport’s consultation on aviation has given a rare opportunity for anyone with an interest in aircraft noise to try to influence future policy. Lisa Russell reports

BS4142: the review continues
The all important and much used BS4142 is under review. Are we any nearer to a conclusion, asks Lis Stedman

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October 2012 issue 66


15m school turbine removed
A 15m wind turbine has been removed because of noise nuisance.

Scottish turbine case heads towards court
A householder is pursuing a private nuisance action against the operator of a 15m Proven wind turbine.

HSE recovers costs for enforcement
The Health and Safety Executive is introducing a fee for intervention (FFI) cost recovery scheme for breaches of health and safety laws, including occupational noise.

Epuk exists
An annual general meeting held last month by Epuk revealed that the organisation continues to struggle with its new semi-voluntary set up.

Turbine backtrack
A wind turbine in Devon has had its planning permission rescinded due to the lack of an environmental impact assessment.

Fullabrook is too loud
Noise measurements at the high profile and disputed Fullabrook wind farm near Barnstaple suggest turbines are too loud.

Porsche accused of over-influence on EU
Campaigners have accused the European Parliament Environment Committee of relying on wording from Porsche in proposed wordings for noise policy documents.

Northern Ireland first with round two maps
Northern Ireland is the first in the UK to produce and publish its round two noise maps.

Pub fine
The licensee of a pub in South Ockendon, Essex, has been fined £2,000 for breaching a noise abatement notice.

Sudden departure
The Institute of Acoustics and its chief executive, Kevin Macan-Lind have parted company. The surprise departure comes six years after he became boss (Noise Bulletin April 2006).

Plymouth busy
Plymouth is seeing increased numbers of noise complaints.

Etsu feedback trickles in
Feedback is starting to roll in from the Institute of Acoustics’ extended consultation for a good practice guide for Etsu wind turbine assessment (Noise Bulletin Aug/Sept p6).

B&K updates hand held analyser
Brüel & Kjær has launched a fourth generation of hardware for its sound level meters and hand-held analysers – Types 2250 and 2270 G4.

Part E tests
A report has looked at four examples of refurbs to see how Part E sound insulation regulations have worked. It was commissioned in 2003 but only just released.

Speed consult
DfT is consulting on speed limit setting criteria.
US disturbance A noise model of a US urban area has put a figure on noise annoyance and sleep disturbance.

Dog pack a ‘human right’?
Council chiefs in Moray were disappointed that a judge ruled that they could not silence a pack of dogs. They blame the lack of noise standards for the failure of a four year battle against the pack.

Listen to turbine thumping for yourself
Consultant Mike Stigwood has opened up his wind farm amplitude modulation ‘listening room’ project to the wider public.

Japanese monitor low frequency noise
A new measurement system for wind turbine noise is being developed in Japan, as researchers from Chiba Institute of Technology explained to Low Frequency Noise 2012 conference (see page six).

Common assessment method finalised
Common noise assessment procedures have been published by Europe. The aim is to standardise quantification of noise exposure across borders.

Dispute cost
Saga Legal Services has carried out a survey and found 28% of the over 50s have been in legal disputes – most with their neighbours.

Subsidy regime revamped
A raft of renewable consultations have been launched covering wind turbines and heat pumps, domestic and non-domestic.

ASB prompts Newham landlord tax
All private landlords in Newham will be expected to pay up to £500 in a new licensing scheme justified by the perceived need to tackle anti social behaviour, including noise from rented properties.

Etsu uncertainties could double background
Two academics believe that wind turbine assessment underestimates uncertainty.

Splott spat
Four residents shared a fine of over £1,000 for repeatedly playing music too loud in Splott, Cardiff.

Quackdown on noise
Also in Cardiff, officers have fined the owner of ducks for allowing too much noise.

Who awarded
The WHO/Europe publication Burden of disease from environmental noise has been highly commended at an annual British Medical Association (BMA) Medical Book Awards ceremony.

Low frequency noise
Latest research into low frequency noise includes projects looking at ways of helping people cope when the source cannot be found. Lisa Russell reports

All about noise
Mike Goldsmith’s new book on noise is like a history lesson, but interesting, finds Lis Stedman

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Aug/Sept 2012 issue 65


£2.49 app simplifies reporting
A new smartphone app simplifies noise nuisance reporting and could lead to more robust reporting of noise nuisance problems.

£500,000 grants help Welsh tranquillity
Welsh Government has announced funding of £494,016 to support 14 local authority-led projects that will improve noise and the local environment.

Layby nuisance claim dismissed
An appeal by a householder complaining of nuisance from a layby in a road has been rejected in the High Court.

Evans rejoins RPS
Phil Evans has rejoined consultant RPS as senior director to lead the acoustics team, following a period as a director at Southdowns and as consulting group manager of the acoustics team at Bureau Veritas.

Vanguardia grows once again
Dr Nicky Shiers and Anne Unwin have joined Vanguardia as the firm further expands.

Council removes AM condition
Central Bedfordshire has been persuaded to remove a planning condition attached to a wind farm aimed at preventing amplitude modulation disturbance.

Anglesey ponders wind turbine SPG
In further evidence that local authorities are developing their own separate guidance for wind energy, Anglesey is consulting on special policy guidance that includes minimum separation distances for wind turbines.

Core strategy lists 3km gap
Wiltshire Council is amending its core strategy planning policy to restrict turbine height and separation distances but has been told to reconsult the public.

Canada wind probe
Health Canada has launched a probe into the health effects of wind turbines.

Mapping harmonisation
The European Joint Research Centre has finished the first phase of the development of common noise assessment methods (CNOSSOS-EU) in Europe.

Pub prosecution
City of York’s environmental protection unit has successfully prosecuted a pub company and owner of a public house in York for failing to comply with a noise abatement notice.

Noise key to aviation revamp
Government is reconsulting on aviation – while the focus is very much on increased runway capacity in south east England and whether there should be further expansion at Heathrow, noise figures highly.

Survey suggests half of population annoyed
Insulation firm Rockwool has published a survey suggesting more than half of UK residents are bothered by noise.

Noise neglected
A new set of sustainable development indicators are proposed for consultation.

Licensing guidance
Guidance is being proposed for changes to the licensing regime following implementation of the Live Music Act in October. The Act became law earlier this year

Rushlight Awards
The annual Rushlight Awards for environmental excellence loom once again and entries are invited.

High Court overturns permit
A metal recycling operation has succeeded in overturning a noise condition in the High Court. European Metal Recycling of Stoke on Trent challenged the Environment Agency questioning whether noise was enough to justify a suspension order for the whole process.

Three categories proposed for development
Consultant Chris Hurst of Three Spires Acoustics has proposed the use of three planning categories to deal with noise.

Olympic noise: three consultants get stuck in
Consultants have been out there trying to capture the excitement of the Olympics and related celebrations.

Wind report
Wind farm protesters have produced a report which includes an analysis of how current procedures produce higher than expected background noise measurements. Under Etsu methodology, that means developers can install noisier turbines.

Jail for knife man
A man who used a knife to threaten a Westminster EHO following up a noise complaint has been jailed.

Tyneside outsource
Environmental health functions at North Tyneside council are being outsourced to consultant Capita Symonds as part of council cost cutting.

Etsu gains good practice guide
Some may see ‘Etsu’ and ‘good practice’ as a contradiction in terms. Will IoA’s planned good practice guide on wind turbine assessment reduce the sniping, asks Jack Pease

Comfy sofa key to thump impact?
Could realistic listening room conditions lead to greater understanding of the impacts of wind turbine amplitude modulation?

Soundscape in a seaside city
Mary Stevens, noise policy expert, formerly with Epuk, and a local resident, looks on with interest as Brighton plays hosts to soundscape experiments

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July 2012 issue 64

County loses Judicial Review
Northumberland County Council has been told that its handling of planning consents for wind turbines failed to properly consider noise impacts.

Europe consults on noise directive review
The European Commission has launched a consultation of its review report of the European noise directive.

Airfield driving centre breaches notice
Harrogate Borough Council has successfully prosecuted a firm using an airfield to offer driving experiences to the public.

Consultant maps ‘Bow Bells’
Consultant 24 Acoustics was commissioned by the Times Atlas of London to map out the sound of Bow Bells and compare it with the historical ‘earshot’ area 150 years ago.

Lower cost noise monitors from Casella
A new low cost noise nuisance recorder from Casella CEL is designed to simplify monitoring complaints about noisy neighbours.

New NI rules
Mapping and action planning guidance has been posted by for consultation by the Northern Ireland Department of the Environment.

Tranquillity review
The Civil Aviation Authority has released a report on tranquillity.

Council adopts 1km+ distance
Milton Keynes Council has adopted as policy separation distances for wind turbines.

Moray moratorium
Moray Council says it is the first local authority in Scotland to seek a moratorium on windfarm applications.

Car limits noisier
European transport and environment pressure group T&E warns that proposed vehicle noise rules could lead to noisier vehicles for the next 15 years.

Noise affects wildlife
A report commissioned by Defra on the impact of noise on wildlife has concluded that there is scarce research and that more research is needed. Bristol researchers came to this conclusion through a desktop review of 85 other people’s studies.

Section 82 notices decline
The newly launched (see box, below) says there has been a long term decline in the use of s82 (non-local authority) nuisance actions under the Environmental Protection Act.

Noise nuisance website launched
Two noise consultants are heading up an initiative aimed at explaining noise nuisance to the public.

Noise expenditure rises in 2010
Capital expenditure on noise protection rose in 2010, the latest year for which figures are available.

Airport payout
600 homeowners affected by Manchester Airport’s second runway will share £1,500 compensation as part of a negotiated deal.

Change of use
DCLG is consulting on allowing deregulating planning change-of-use legislation to make it easier to convert existing commercial buildings into

NPPF response
The Government’s interpretation of responses to the NPPF consultation has been released.

Co-Op help for M40 barriers
A long-established M40 action group on noise has won grants that may lead to solar noise barriers being placed alongside the M40.

Smartphone app for Heathrow noise
Heathrow protest group Hacan has teamed up with University College London (UCL) to launch a smartphone app to capture aircraft noise.

Reliable turbine nuisance assessments needed
The need for reliable assessments of the noise impact of small wind turbines is likely to become ever more important, said Temple Group technical director Dani Fiumicelli at last month’s CIEH nuisance conference (Noise Bulletin June p8).

New President for IOA
Professor Bridget Shield has become the president of the Institute of Acoustics succeeding Trevor Cox.

IAC sold
Industrial Acoustics Inc (IAC) has been sold by current equity firm MML Capital Partners to another equity firm AEA Investors (not to be confused with AEA consultants).

Speeds up
Sampling of vehicle speeds has shown that between 2010 and 2011, the percentage of cars and motorcycles exceeding the 30 mph speed limit increased to 47 and 50% respectively. On motorways, 49% of cars exceeded the 70 mph speed limit in 2011, unchanged from 2010.

Planning in a vacuum?
The Institute of Acoustics meeting on the National Planning Policy Framework asked ‘What happens to noise policy decision-making in a vacuum?’. Lisa Russell reports.

Anti social behaviour makeover
We take a deeper look at Government White Paper plans for anti social behaviour. Lis Stedman reports

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June 2012 issue 63

Noise powers for the police?
19 sundry anti social behaviour tools, including Asbos, will be replaced by six under plans contained in a new Government White Paper. Many of the new powers can be used to tackle noise nuisance – with suggestions that the police will get increased power over noise.

Funding for quiet areas (but only in Wales)
Welsh local authorities will share £500,000 of grant funding for developing quiet areas.

Alton Towers rerun?
Court procedural hearings have cleared the way for a re-run of the high profile noise nuisance case against Alton Towers theme park.

Chimes plan annoys
The Noise Abatement Society does not welcome plans to deregulate ice cream chime noise. The deregulation is part of Government efforts to cut red tape (Noise Bulletin April p4).

Private nuisance action fails
Residents have had to shell out £50,000 in costs following failure of an Environmental Protection Act Section 82 nuisance action in Reading Magistrates’ Court following excess noise from a new playground.

Heathrow freedoms studied as trial extended
The CAA has reported on impacts of operational freedoms at Heathrow Airport which allowed BAA to alternate flights on its two runways. Meanwhile the trial has been extended in length and scope.

Regulations important
MPs have said that regulations to protect the environment are important. Their new report comes as Government culls environmental regulations as part of its drive to cut red tape (Noise Bulletin April p2).

Campbell extends
Due to the continued success of its UKAS and traceable calibration business, Campbell Associates has extended its offices at Dunmow in Essex, with the addition of a new calibration laboratory. Three pieces of kit can now be calibrated simultaneously.

Etsu. Unlawful and not fair
There has been further criticism, of Etsu from wind turbine expert Dick Bowdler.

Enough is enough? Lincs and Wales revolts
Politicians in Lincolnshire and Wales have both put down a marker against unfettered expansion of wind turbines.

Lincs loses patience with turbines
Lincolnshire county councillors want a halt to the “unrestrained invasion of wind turbines across Lincolnshire”.

Noise important
Visual impact and community benefit are less important than noise and local jobs when people are considering whether to support or oppose an onshore wind farm in their local area, according to a new poll.

Easy measurements
Measurement firm Brüel & Kjær has launched its Measurement Partner Suite – free, post-processing software for sound level meters and hand-hand analysers.

School reprieve?
The Institute of Acoustics has welcomed the news that acoustics is among eight out of 24 regulations that are to be retained in the Government’s new School Premises Regulations due to be announced in September.

More payments due to Essex bungle
Essex County Council and Epping Forest Council have been forced to make further payments due to a bungled waste site permit.

Summer service
A night time call-out service run by Hartlepool Council to clampdown on noise nuisance has begun operating for the summer.

Bells annoy
Swiss researchers have studied the science of awakenings due to bell noise.

Action day again
Despite little central help, councils and other organisations managed to put on a good show for Noise Action Week, finds Lis Stedman

Experts mull nuisance progress
Practical guidance on dealing with a range of noise nuisance issues was on offer at a recent CIEH conference. Lisa Russell reports

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May 2012 issue 62

Complaint prompts libel row
A bitter noise complaint has spilled over into the High Court.

EIA at centre of High Court ruling
Moving the site of a proposed rubbish plant did not require a new noise impact survey, the High Court has said.

Action week: still a force to be reckoned with
Local authorities and housing providers are showing a strong interest in Noise Action Week, even though only electronic resources are available to support it this time around.

Etsu and AM condition scrutiny
A methodology intended to patch up gaps in Etsu wind turbine assessment – dubbed the IoA Bulletin Agreement – may worsen noise.

RES to vary Den Brook condition?
Wind farm developer RES is consulting on a variation of a tight condition on amplitude modulation (AM) at the proposed Den Brook wind farm in Devon.

Airfield rap for Hambleton
Failure to tackle a noisy airfield has landed Hambleton Council, with an Ombudsman censure.

Olympics push for night time deliveries
Out of hours deliveries will be encouraged during the Olympic period in a bid to reduce road congestion at peak times.

Video sets out benefits of vehicle noise cuts
Three European environmental pressure groups have come together to produce a video on the proposed tightening of vehicle noise standards.

Scotland adopts devolution
Epuk Scotland is going its own way thanks to funding from Scottish Government which will allow Epuk Scotland (EPS) to employ two part-time members of staff.

Epuk membership: 50% subs cut agreed
Epuk member organisations will by now have received membership details for the 2012/13 financial year.

Brickbats awarded for noise failures
Noisedirect, which operates a noise advice service for the public, has revealed the winners of its Blue Mu awards for doing little or nothing to prevent noise nuisance or improve the noise environment. Blue Mu is based on the Japanese Kanjii symbol for nothing, the awards are “to noise what the Razzies are to the Oscars”.

How the Americans tackle noise
The UK Government wants localism and cut central guidance. The US abolished federal noise enforcement 30 years ago – leading to a myriad of local noise byelaws. Is this the future for Britain?

Vegetation: can it cut noise?
Researchers from around the world, including the UK, have been studying how trees and other vegetation can screen or alter the noise we hear. Lisa Russell looks at some of the findings.

Eviction first
Halton Housing Trust has used Campbell Associates’ Norsonic 140NNR kits for its first eviction based on noise nuisance. Evidence was gathered by the equipment to provide evidence of breaches of a noise abatement notice put on Sally Johnson’s flat in Clapgate, Widnes.

Asbo obtained
Thurrock Council has obtained a five year ASBO for a persistent noise maker.

HS2 awards
Further environmental contracts, which include noise assessment, have been awarded by HS2, the group promoting the proposed high speed railway line to the north of England.

Agency calibration
The Environment Agency is seeking tenderers for a c£80,000 contract to calibrate its noise instruments.

Insulation maps
Turkish researchers have translated European noise maps into noise insulation maps.

International day
International Noise Action day was marked in the UK with MP Bob Russell tabling an Early Day Motion in Parliament supporting increased efforts on nuisance noise.

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April 2012 issue 61

PPG24 out, tranquillity in
The National Planning Policy Framework is in – with tranquillity explicitly recognised despite just 47 pages of policy.

Guidance: in or out?
So it looks as though planning guidance, such as Planning Policy Guidance PPG24 on noise, is now superseded. Or is it?

Laminate flooring spat lands £140,000 costs
Residents of a posh flat have lost their court bid against noise from an upstairs neighbour caused by a laminate floor. Costs amounted to £140,000.

Epuk down but Noise Action Week thrives
Noise Action Week is going ahead this year despite the demise in its current form of parent organisation

Mildenhall fallout
A High Court appeal that appeared to suggest granting of planning permission changed the character of the area could lead to difficulties for local authorities.

Fixed complaint threshold challenged
A huge High Court case – focussing on odour but resolved based on many noise nuisance precedents – has thrown out an earlier appeal judgement which suggested fixed numbers of complaints as a means of judging nuisance.

Process noise leads to fine
Dudley MBC has been told by the Ombudsman to pay £7,000 compensation to residents near a foundry due to noise and smells. The council’s unwillingness to prosecute a permitted process because of potential loss of jobs was at the heart of the dispute.

London Assembly revisits Heathrow
London Assembly members, fearing further expansion at Heathrow, have revisited the issue of noise at the airport. A new report includes calls for:

Red tape conclusions drawn
Environmental regulation appears to have emerged relatively unscathed from cuts in “red tape”.

Council adopts 2km separation zone
North Yorkshire County Council has adopted as policy the need for a 2km separation distance between large wind turbines and houses.

Injunction to stop noisy car cruisers
An injunction has been granted to tackle nuisance from 200 car cruisers at a retail park near Nottingham.

Chimes change
As part of the drive to cut ‘red tape, Defra is consulting on the code of practice on ice cream van chimes.

Wales does it quietly
Lis Stedman takes a closer look at Welsh plans to designate quiet areas. There are far fewer candidate quiet areas than mooted a few years ago

Noises off (for eight years)
One man’s eight-year struggle to get respite from noisy neighbours offers lessons for local authorities and housing associations, reports Lisa Russell

Nuisance decline?
The number of nuisance complaints has dropped massively, CIEH statistics suggest. For 2010/11, the latest data available,

NI neighbourhood regulations now in
The Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act (Northern Ireland) has come into force. Guidance has been issued on how to deal with nuisances such as noisy alarms and licensees’ premises.

Landlords’ ASB tool launched
The Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) has launched a new tool designed to help social landlords highlight the impact of anti social behaviour (ASB) on the wider community.

Bromilow switch
Ian Bromilow joins Vanguardia as principal consultant. Bromilow has worked for Atkins, Sandy Brown and BDP and most recently was freelance.

IOA to sponsor ‘Noise Oscar’ again
The IOA is again sponsoring a Noise Abatement Society John Connell Award.

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March 2012 issue 60

Wind slashes 16% off value?
The farmhouse at the centre of the high profile Deeping St Nicholas wind farm nuisance case has been sold at a 16% loss.

Durham council rapped for allowing nuisance
Durham County Council has been found to be incompetent and neglectful by granting planning permission for cattle buildings next to housing.

Complaints ignored
Many noise complaints are not investigated by councils, Noisedirect believes.

Royal Parks win licence review
Westminster has ‘lost’ its battle to protect residents from excess noise from Hyde Park.

Web helps Matron investigations
Environmental health officers can now use the web to remotely monitor investigation progress with Bruel & Kjaer’s Matron Live neighbour noise monitoring system.

Noise deprioritised
Noise is no longer a priority for London, it appears.

Westminster ‘busiest’
Westminster City Council believes it is the UK’s busiest noise team.

HS2 appointment
HS2 Ltd has appointed Arup, supported by URS, to carry out environmental overview services.

Wales consults on quiet areas
Wales has set out quiet areas in line with European Noise Directive plans.

Noise must figure in air quality planning
Welsh Government is warning local authorities that they must consider noise when carrying out air quality planning.

Heathrow complaints up
Noise complaints have shot up at Heathrow since the airport commenced its mixed mode trial.

Noise indicator
Noise will be a ‘placeholder’ (ie reserve) indicator in the proposed performance indicators for the new public health set up.

Public health advice
CIEH has produced suggestions on how environmental health professionals can engage with the new public health service.

Noise Action Week
As Noise Bulletin went to press, the Noise Action Week website and associated Twitter account suggests the event will go ahead this year in May.

Noise death
An 18 year old Great Yarmouth girl who stabbed her neighbour to death because of motorcycle noise has escaped a murder charge but has been found guilty of manslaughter.

Status quo justifies noise
A controversial judgement on speedway noise has been overturned on appeal. It sets a precedent that planning permission can legitimise what could be considered a noise nuisance.

Elmbridge app?
Elmbridge is looking to further develop its online Noise Toolkit by producing an app that would see the key functions of the Toolkit developed for smart phones and tablets.

Consultants merge
Royal Haskoning and DHV intend to merge to create a top 10 independently owned global engineering consultancy, (and within the top 40 overall).

EIAs clarified
The European Commission has brought together all existing EU legislation governing environmental impact assessments to simplify the process.

CA gets UKAS
Campbell Associates has been UKAS accredited for its calibration service for measurement microphones.

What worth is quiet?
As Wales sets out its quiet areas Lis Stedman looks at a report valuing the importance of quiet areas

Noise and health revisited
Two new reports published by Defra highlight the unseen harm that high noise levels can do both to people’s pockets and to their health. Lisa Russell reports

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January/February 2012 issue 59

Salford will ignore complaints
Salford has spelled out which noise nuisances it will investigate – and those it won’t, even if it risks breaching its statutory duty on nuisance.

Fullabrook monitoring agreed
The controversial North Devon Fullabrook wind farm is being fully commissioned. The council has negotiated increased monitoring to check there is no excess noise at nearby properties.

Licensing help?
Elmbridge, which has won recognition for its work on publicising noise nuisance, is seeking to produce a code of practice for licensed premises. It is looking for partners and may tie the initiative into Noise Action Week.

Westminster serves improvement notice
Westminster has served an improvement notice on a landlord when it became clear the premises were too hot and too noisy to open windows forming a category one HHSRS hazard.

AM Condition refused in Biggleswade wind appeal judgement
A planning inspector has refused to use a planning condition to cover amplitude modulation for the Langford wind farm, near Biggleswade, which he has approved in a recent planning appeal judgement.

Taylor takes it
Defra has appointed consultant Rupert Taylor to study the impact of historic policy interventions on noise. The research aims to support the objectives of the Noise Policy Statement for England (Noise Bulletin December 2011 p4).

AM condition runs late
Work on framing an acceptable planning condition for wind turbine amplitude modulation is running late.

Two states get tougher
Australia’s New South Wales Government – and the Danish – have introduced new noise rules for wind turbines which include a low frequency component.

Wind team
The IoA has released details of its wind farm noise assessment working group.

Contours don’t match complaints
A policy document from the Civil Aviation Authority accepts that shrinking noise contours have not led to reduced noise complaints.

Noise more annoying, suggests Rickaby
Mike Rickaby of the London Borough of Hillingdon believes that aircraft noise may be more annoying than conventional metrics suggest.

Wandsworth and Lambeth clash at Clapham
Wandsworth is expressing concern at neighbouring Lambeth’s proposals to increase noise on Clapham Common in south London.

Kettering gets tough
Kettering has served a noise abatement notice on a couple who made too much noise.

Vehicle limits toughened
The European Commission has proposed stricter noise emission limits for cars, vans, lorries and buses.

NoiseSentinel chosen for Crossrail project
Brüel & Kjær’s real-time noise monitoring subscription service, NoiseSentinel, is set to ensure the compliance of the Crossrail construction works.

Further improvement to Casella kit
Casella has made further improvements to its CEL-630 series of sound level meters, which it describes as one of the smallest devices of its kind currently available in the market place.

£190,000 fine
South London firm Metal & Waste Recycling Ltd has been fined £150,000 with £40,000 costs in Woolwich Crown Court.

CIEH poll reveals cuts
The Chartered Institute of Environmental Health recently asked its members how cuts were affecting out of hours services.

Out of hours being cut
Following on from CIEH’s survey  Lis Stedman talks to some councils about their hours noise services, and how they are faring in the face of cuts

Firework noise affects human rights?
The European Court has dismissed a case involving noise from fireworks in Malta. A resident complained his Article 8 human rights to peaceful enjoyment of his property were being breached by fireworks displays.

Noise prompts tunnels for HS2
Concerns about noise has prompted increased tunnelling for the HS2 rail link. The Government has confirmed

Truck firm fine
Delivery and engine noise has cost a firm £15,000 in court.

Brighton pilots soundscape art
A pilot project has shown that introducing a pleasant soundscape outside a cluster of nightclubs may help reduce noisy behaviour among the revellers.

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