Taking action against noise
Taking your own action and alternatives to legal action
If the council are unable to take formal action regarding your complaint, or you do not wish to involve them, then you have the option of taking your own action under section 82 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. You do not need to employ a solicitor but you are strongly advised to obtain legal advice.
Are there alternatives to legal action?
Noise disputes are often resolved informally. Legal action should be a last resort. It is unpleasant and will inevitably cause further issues in the relationship between you and your neighbour. It is very important that you do your best to resolve any problem in a friendly way.
Many areas have mediation services that will help you resolve noise disputes that may be part of a bigger issue between neighbours. One thing to remember is you have to live with your neighbours and finding middle ground may be more productive than complaining about them to the council.
The UK Mediation website gives general information about mediation and how the process works.
Officers in Environmental Protection have access to mediation services through our partner agencies. Contact us for more information and to discuss if you would like a referral.
If the problem seems to be inadequate sound insulation, there are DIY measures that can help: "Improving Sound Insulation in Homes" from the Building Research Establishment (01923 664664) specifies measures for improving insulation.