Driven out of their home by loud music from next door, after a sleepless night for himself and young son, a resident of THORNTON HEATH has contacted Inside Croydon about the council’s lack of protection for some of its residents
Our shared wall had regularly throbbed with dub and reggae for the last few months and our attempts to negotiate directly with our neighbours proved futile.
We went out. We came back. It was loud. So, we went out again. We stayed out … our neighbours had earlier claimed that they were having – yet another – party and that they knew their rights. During the day there was no noise pollution team to call to enforce our rights.
The noise pollution officer called at 8.30pm and informed me that we were No8 on his list. I was out with the family trying to preserve our sanity. I said I’d call the council again when we got home.
We got home at 8.45pm, and the noise was nearly bearable. But, as the revellers got stoned, the dub got louder. I rang the council contact centre at about 9.30pm and was promised a call back from the noise pollution team. By 12.30am no call, no sign of the noise pollution team and our four-year-old was sleeping next to my wife. He didn’t want to sleep in his noisy room alone.
I am an epileptic, and we are advised by our doctors of the need to ensure that we sleep well. Despite my need for sleep, I waited for a response from the council. At 12.40am I called the council again in a state of mild despair and the operator sounded as if I was giving him a problem.
At 1.30am I started to crawl in to my son’s bed. But, I stopped and kept the faith. The noise pollution team’s shift ended at 3am, so after waiting 17 hours what was another 90 minutes going to matter. Experience, though, told me that sometimes the team simply doesn’t respond.
At 2am, to my surprise, the phone rang. The team was outside. I invited them in and apologised for being persistent when all that could be heard now was a bit of Gloria Gaynor in the dining room. “No that’s loud enough,” the team – both of them – said. The gentle team politely asked our neighbours to stop, which they did. Instantly.
The noise pollution officers were a great help, but is one noise pollution team, operating only between 8pm and 3am, enough for an urban borough of 350,000 people?
Then, yesterday morning, when I looked out of our bedroom window, our 55-year-old neighbour looked up and mimed a pistol shot at our house over his shoulder.
B-B-B-B Boom Boom.
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