Noise Complaints

People are often impacted by noise from their wider environment, the source may range from public houses and restaurants to noisy parties and loud music. If you feel you are being excessively impacted by intrusive noise in your home then this can be a matter the Council can investigate.

We can only take action where the noise is so intrusive and so frequent that it can be considered an unacceptable intrusion into your life. Although we understand the irritation and upset this type of disturbance can cause, we would stress it is important that you keep good relations with your neighbours.

The Council can only take action where the noise is so bad it can be legally considered a Statutory Nuisance. This is because you have no general entitlement to peace and quiet and for a noise nuisance to be actionable by the Council it has to be both more than an irritation and listed in legislation as something which can be enforced.

As a simple guide, it is often worth considering how the noise interferes with you such as, is it audible over normal conversation, or do you need to turn the radio or television up to mask the sound? Along with how long and for how often does the noise interfere with your home life. The key issue is that to be a nuisance the noise needs to be bad enough that an ordinary person would agree there is a significant issue. Some noise issues are not covered as they are specifically permitted under other regulations, the best example of this is construction noise during the normal working day.

Resolving noise problems

It is often better to try to resolve problems by speaking to the person who is causing the noise disturbance, if this is possible without putting your safety at risk.

Alternatively, you could try contacting Mediation Surrey whose service is free and confidential.

Car alarms

When an alarm is reported, we will make attempts, within reason, to find the person responsible for the vehicle.

An abatement notice will be attached to the car while investigations are happening, giving the owner of the vehicle one hour to silence the alarm.

If the alarm still sounds after one hour, we can authorise works necessary to silence the noise nuisance, either by gaining access to the car or by removing it.

Burglar alarms

On hearing a security alarm please first contact the police, as it is possible there may have been a break in.

If there is no evidence of a break-in and the alarm continues to sound for more than 20 minutes, report it to us.

Building/demolition work

This excludes domestic/short term DIY.

Advice for sites and builders

Provided building sites follow good practice for noisy work and ensure it is restricted to recognised construction hours, we find there are relatively few complaints. The following advice will help the construction process to run smoothly with neighbouring residents:

  • Send a letter to neighbours before work commences which outlines any potential disruption and provide a contact name and telephone number for someone with responsibility for the building works.
  • Send a copy of those details by e-mail to Environmental Health at: so we can contact you if we receive any complaints.
  • If you have a site hoarding display your company name along with contact details in a prominent position.
  • Ensure your site manager makes a record of any reasonable complaints and any corrective action taken.


Keep dust down by spraying with water when and where you can.

See also our Air and Water Quality page.


We recommended that no noise should be heard from the site outside of the following hours:

  • Saturday: 8am to 2pm
  • Sunday and Bank Holidays: none
  • Weekdays: 7.30am to 6pm

If you wish to work outside these hours on a construction site you, please contact

See also our Construction Working Hours page.

General noise nuisance

If we find something to be a statutory noise nuisance, we can serve an abatement notice, which would then be an offence not to control that noise.

This could depend on how loud the noise is, the duration of the noise and the frequency in which it occurs.

If you are concerned about on-going noise, we advise that where possible you approach those making the noise in the first instance. Often they will be unaware that they are disturbing you.

Advice can be found on the Noise Nuisance website.

If the noise persists after you have spoken to the source you can report it.

Report a Noise Complaint ›

It must be noted that we do not operate an out of hours service for noise complaints. If you contact us out of hours, your details will be taken and the complaint will be sent to the Environmental Health team the next working day.

If you are calling out of hours, please contact 01372 376533.

Please be advised you will be required to disclose your address and also the address of the source of the noise in order to proceed.

We cannot act on anonymous calls.

You may be required to fill in log sheets for evidence, recording how the noise is affecting you.