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BBC Wales's social affairs reporter Louise Elliott
"Pollution officers say people are becoming less tolerant of noise"
 real 28k

Wednesday, 7 June, 2000, 09:54 GMT 10:54 UK
Action to promote peace and quiet
Noise demonstration
People are complaining more about noise pollution
Every year in Wales about 10,000 complaints are made about noise - most of them over loud stereos.

And each year the number of prosecutions and evictions for persistently noisy neighbours is increasing.

To highlight the problem National Noise Action Day is holding events across Wales - to gently promote some peace and quiet.

Pollution control officers said as well as an increase in noise people are becoming less tolerant.

It means a huge increase in their workload because more and more people are complaining about neighbourhood noise.

In Wales, the most common problem is music annoying 41% of those asked.

People arguing and car alarms are the next most irritating noises and barking dogs come fourth - with a quarter of those asked describing it as unbearable.


Dog
Barking dogs are high on the hate list

In Cardiff alone there were more than 2,500 noise complaints last year - the majority of them were neighbour disputes.

Cardiff Noise Pollution Team said it has had a huge increase in caseload in the last five years - from dogs barking to noisy crickets from a pet shop.

Environmental Health officer Rob Hartshorne, who works in the noise and air pollution unit in Cardiff, said persistent unwanted noise, even if it is relatively quiet, can still seriously affect your health.

In Denbighshire, residents of a housing estate in Rhyl are trying to deal with the problem of noisy neighbours themselves.

The Bruton Park Estate are hoping a new mediation scheme will help encourage some peace and quiet.

Ann Jones, Assembly member for the area, said tolerance for persistently noisy tenants should be limited.

And councils are looking at using the full force of the law by confiscating stereos or moving noisy tenants - as the problems increase.

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