Noise nuisance
  • A to Z
  • Newsroom
  • Contact us
  • Accessibility
  • A- A+

Noise nuisance

Noise coming from houses, flats and other domestic properties

If you report noise coming from domestic properties it will be dealt with by the Leeds anti-social behaviour team who are part of Safer Leeds.

The Leeds anti-social behaviour team will keep your details confidential and will not take action without your consent. We are not able to respond to anonymous complaints, although this information will be recorded in case of future complaints.

Please read the following information carefully before contacting us.

For information about noise coming from pubs, clubs, factories and other business properties, please read the Noise from commercial premises section of this page.​​

More on domestic noise

Click to expandWhat is noise nuisance?

Noise that is unreasonable or excessive is considered a noise nuisance. Noise is part of our daily lives and a degree of tolerance is expected.

The following factors are considered to determine if noise is unreasonable or excessive: ​

-Time of day
-Volume of the noise
-Persistence of the noise
-Source/cause of the noise
-Ability for the sound to be controlled

Noise as a result of day to day activity such as flushing toilets, children playing, washing machines, vacuums, lawnmowers, doors and cupboards closing, cannot generally be considered a noise nuisance, unless they are happening at unreasonable times, for example in the middle of the night so as to disturb sleep.

No mechanical equipment should be used before 8am in residential areas.

To be a nuisance, noise must be causing substantial and unreasonable interference in your home on a regular basis. Faulty burglar alarms or excessively loud music/television are examples of noise nuisance.
​​​​​​

Click to expandHow do I report noise nuisance?

Noise that happens during the day:

Contact Leeds anti-social behaviour team to report noise nuisance from domestic properties. ​Use the Report noise nuisance form or call us on 0113 222 4402, 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

If you rent your home privately, you need to report the problems to your landlord. If you rent from the council, you can report this to Housing Leeds on 0800 188 4000 or 0113 376 0410.


Noise that happens at night or at weekends/bank holidays:

If the problem is noise outside of office hours, please ring 0113 395 0143. This is available from 6pm to 3:30am.

The council operates a night-time response service in partnership with West Yorkshire Police.

Noise at night-time should only be reported when the noise is occurring. If the noise stops before the team attends, please ring back to cancel the request.

The team aim to call customers back to check the noise is still ongoing and gather more information before attending​. The service availability is subject to demand and although they may not be able to stop the noise for you, they may provide further evidence to back up your allegations.​​​​​​​​​​

Click to expandWays you can help investigations

Keep a diary of the nuisance. There are five basic questions we need you to answer when you report a noise nuisance:

1. Where?

Is the problem in your home, outside your home, or somewhere else? Be as specific about the location as you can.

2. When?

When does the nuisance occur? Is it at night or early hours of the morning? Provide dates and times for each incident.

3. Who?

Is the person or are the people involved known to you? Can you describe them?

4. Why? 

Could there be a reason you are being targeted? Is it an issue that is affecting anyone else?

5. What?

What is the nuisance behaviour?


Noise from commercial premises


The Environmental Protection Team investigate complaints about noise from commercial and licensed premises and events within Leeds such as noise from factories, industrial units, construction sites, shops, pubs, clubs, restaurants and takeaways.


The use of heavy machinery is permitted between the hours of 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday and 8am to 1pm on Saturday. Outside of these hours its use is considered a nuisance.


Please read the sections below about our service or report commercial noise pollution.​​​


More on commercial noise

Click to expandHow do I report commercial noise nuisance?

​Use the Report commercial noise nuisance form or ring the Environmental Protection Team on 0113 378 5959 open from 9am to 5pm (4:30pm on a Friday).

If the problem is noise beyond office hours you should ring 0113 395 0143. This is available from 6pm to 3:30am.

The council operates a night-time response service in partnership with West Yorkshire Police. Noise at night-time should only be reported when the noise is occurring. If the noise stops before the team attends, please ring back to cancel the request.

The team aim to call customers back to check the noise is still ongoing before attending, especially during peak times on weekends and bank holidays. The service availability is subject to demand and although they may not be able to stop the noise for you, they may provide further evidence to back up your allegations.

Aircraft and airport noise:

The Council and all local authorities in the UK do not have the power to enforce noise nuisance control caused by aircraft or airports. Complaints and information about aircraft noise can be found on the Civil Aviation Authority website at www.caa.co.uk.​​​​​​​​

Civil Aviation Authority

Click to expandWhat information do I need to provide?

To be able to investigate your complaint we need certain information. When you make a complaint we need to know:


• your name and address as well as a contact telephone number – for legal reasons we cannot accept anonymous complaints;
• information on what type of nuisance is allegedly causing the problem and why you think it is happening;
• where specifically the alleged nuisance is coming from including the address of any premises and/or location of any source;
• the days of the week and times of the day it usually occurs;
• how long the problem lasts for when it occurs;
• if the problem has happened before – if so when;
• if the problem is likely to occur again;
• how the alleged nuisance is affecting you;
• whether you have contacted the source of the problem and if so what happened;
• if you will be willing to support formal action including providing nuisance diaries, witness statements and the use of monitoring equipment.​

Click to expandWhat will happen with my complaint?

We investigate complaints in a balanced way based on evidence and must act according to the law and any relevant guidance or codes of practice. Allegations of nuisance are serious and as criminal investigations can lead to criminal sanctions against the alleged perpetrator if proven. When you make a complaint to us and we decide to investigate, you have an important role to play. We will ask you to support your allegations with evidence, such as by keeping a nuisance diary, making recordings using our equipment and providing a witness statement for use in court.

We usually start our investigation by advising the business of the complaint, as often an informal approach helps to quickly solve the problem.

If an informal approach does not work we will continue to investigate your allegations further but will ask that you provide us with evidence.

Click to expandWhat does the environmental protection team do?

​The Environmental Protection Team investigates statutory nuisance. A statutory nuisance is where there is unreasonable and substantial interference with the use of land. It must either make you do something significantly different to avoid it or it does not allow you to do something you normally would in a serious way.

When we consider a statutory nuisance we make a judgment based on an ordinary member of the public with normal feelings and sensitivities – what would a normal person think about it? We must look at certain matters in balance when deciding if a statutory nuisance exists and we can help you with your complaint.

In some instances when all these factors and any relevant case law is taken into account what you believe is a nuisance may not be a statutory nuisance and we may not be able to investigate your complaint. If this is the case we will advise you why.

Click to expandHow can I assist with the investigation?

In some cases we may ask you to keep a ‘nuisance diary’. This tells us in more detail how and when the problem affects you. We may ask you to keep diaries for as long as our investigation is open. We use the information provided by your diary and any other evidence provided to decide if and when to make a site visit. We may also use your diary as evidence to support the service of a legal notice or as evidence in court proceedings. As these are criminal investigations it is therefore important that the information you give is clear and accurate.

In some cases we may also ask you to make recordings using our equipment, but will consider other recordings.

Investigations can take days, weeks and even months before they reach a conclusion. If we decide to take formal action we may also ask you for a witness statement to support your allegations and attend and answer questions in court.

There is no guarantee that formal action will be successful and what you believe is a nuisance may not be a statutory nuisance. ​

Click to expandWill you tell the person causing the problem who I am?

Not unless you want us to. That is unless or until we take formal action. Due to the rules of evidence we may need to provide your details at a court hearing. We will discuss this with you beforehand.

For legal reasons we cannot accept anonymous complaints.

Click to expandWill you still take action if I do not or cannot give a diary or other supporting evidence?

Any formal action we take without your evidence may not be effective as we are less able to show how the problem affects you or anyone who lives or works nearby.

We are unlikely to investigate a complaint further without a diary or other supporting evidence. If you cannot keep a diary please explain the reason to us so that we may consider a suitable alternative.

Click to expandIf you cannot help me, what else can I do?

The Environmental Protection Act 1990 Section 82 allows you to take your own action through the Magistrates Court. You should write to those involved to give them warning and keep a copy for your records.

If your complaint relates to a licensed premises you may request a review of a premises licence call 0113 247 4095 or email entertainment.licensing@leeds.gov.uk

You may take action for a ‘private nuisance’. This will involve the local county court. You should ask your solicitor for advice beforehand.    ​​​

To view documents in PDF format you will require the free Download Adobe Reader Adobe Acrobat Reader


Did you find the information you were looking for?