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AIBU to want to sit in my garden without being subjected to next doors loud music?

(112 Posts)
jamdonut Sun 26-May-13 16:32:28

Just that.

Lovely sunny day,chance to go out and sit in the garden, but next door have friends and their children over,and are playing awful repetitive Ibiza style music loudly. We've tried playing some Muse back at them,and they turned it down a bit,then we went in to have lunch and they turned it back up angry I wouldn't dare go talk to them about it...they're scary!

Talkinpeace Mon 27-May-13 22:17:35

have you asked them first?
I did and my lovely, peaceful neighbours admitted that it annoyed them but we settled on 1/2 hour of loud and then quiet : everybody happy

I took to leaning over the fence and saying : I've got laundry up, could you shout before you light, otherwise could I use your tumble drier ... it worked

HamsterDam Mon 27-May-13 22:37:57

never thought of asking, its not loud but they can hear it, it wouldn't bother me if they wanted to play music on their side. part and parcel of living close yo people, sometimes i hear him playing his guitars other times they do diy. its not all day everyday im out most of the time

Wiifitmama Mon 27-May-13 22:57:28

We have had major issues with our neighbours and loud music (among many other things). Particularly in the garden. Luckily for us, they are housing association tenants. I say luckily because we actually have some recourse that way (through the housing association antisocial behaviour team). If they were private tenants, it would be much harder to deal with. We spent our first year here fighting hard against the housing association to take responsibility for their tenants. Persistence with both them, and the councils noise team, worked. They have a noise abatement order against them and were on the brink of eviction. They are now mostly under control.

I learned a lot from the experience. Firstly, what constitutes noise nuisance. Children's noise, no matter how loud, is not noise nuisance. Music is, but it is not necessarily against the rules of a noise abatement order to play music in the garden. It is somewhat subjective as to how loud it needs to be to be a nuisance. Swearing is noise nuisance. If we (or our kids) can hear it, they should not be doing it.

I also learned you have to be very persistent. Keep records and if you email the council housing people, copy in the noise team. The housing association in our case tried to make us believe that we were the only people ever to complain. They changed their tune when we copied them into an email from the noise team detailing the proceedings already taking place. Don't be fobbed off and told that you should just speak to them. In our case, the neighbours were extremely abusive and we stopped engaging with them. We then found out that the noise team from the council have a note on file that they must take police back up if they attend that property due to the aggression.

I realise this all sounds horrible. But the happy ending is that we live in relative peace now (as much as is possible with neighbours like that). We pretend they don't exist as much as possible. They know they are on thin ice. On the few occasions when things get out of hand noise wise (rarely now)" we call the noise team. And we also realise that a moderate level of music playing in the garden by them, while considered antisocial by us, is normal on a sunny weekend in London.

twofingerstoGideon Tue 28-May-13 07:10:39

never thought of asking, its not loud but they can hear it, it wouldn't bother me if they wanted to play music on their side. part and parcel of living close yo people

Ah the old 'it would bother me...' argument.

If everyone considered their neighbour, intrusive noise wouldn't be 'part and parcel' of living close to people.

jamdonut Thu 30-May-13 10:54:14

I brought my children up to have respect for their neighbours, and other people in general, in the same way as my parents taught me.

My neighbour the other side is an old lady in her 70's. She has always complimented me and the children on how well they play together.She feels sorry me!

I just think subjecting people to music you like, especially in gardens that are in close proximity,like ours (terraced houses) is grossly unfair.

As for child noise...I guess I have to put up with it. I have this sort of noise at school all day,then to come home to children (who don't go to my school) who can't speak to each other without hollering and roaring,and parents who yell down the garden at them....well,it shreds your nerves.

Also...trampolines....every other garden has them (not ours!) and all you can hear is the continuous squeaking and thudding. I'm sorry, but it is like torture to me.

Me and DH love our garden,he is a keen gardener,but it totally takes the joy away from having one when you can't enjoy it due to other people's 'couldn't-care-less-' attitudes.

loofet Thu 30-May-13 11:29:57

Not sure about this one.

I think people have a right to play their music in their garden on a nice day if they want and that's their right to do so. I think as long as it's not persistent noise making e.g all night parties or a dog that barks all day then there's no reason to complain. I think it's only a breach of the peace if it's early in the morning (like my MIDDLE AGED neighbours playing loud music at 8 a.m angry.) or late at night and thus disturbing sleep.

Imo it's all part of living close to people. But I can see why you'd be annoyed at that awful taste in music grin.

NewGirlInTown Thu 30-May-13 11:36:45

Lots of talk about RIGHTs and nothing about neighbourliness, consideration and good manners.
Loofet, where precisely is this "right" you speak of, enshrined?
Living close to people surely means you recognise you absolutely do NOT have the "right" to inflict your lifestyle choices on them?

Binkybix Thu 30-May-13 11:46:46

But people who can't tolerate any music at all are imposing their lifestyle choices on people by expecting them not to enjoy their garden in the way they want, too. Lots of childless people may well find children shrieking very annoying, but that that seems generally accepted here. Surely there's a middle ground to be found in both cases?

As I've said I'm on the fence here, and think it has to be about give and take when you get two neighbours who have different ways they like to enjoy their outside space. Persistent or loud music would not be on for me, but I would find the odd occasion of playing music at a low volume reasonable.

quoteunquote Thu 30-May-13 11:50:23

play this
better recording

alabasterangel Thu 30-May-13 12:01:18

YANBU. You have my sympathies. Agreed you should politely ask them, although I know how much you don't want to. If you do go down the route of asking for subsequent help from the EH dept at the council, please be aware that you will have to declare that you have had noise issue to any buyer of your house in future. Fair that, isn't it? angry

We have to listen to next doors radio, loudly, from their open back door when the weather is anything other than arctic. If she's in, the radio is on and the door is open. Her backdoor is 6m max from mine and facing mine. Inside my kitchen, bedroom, bathroom or living room I can hear every word of every song, news bulletins, travel reports. I can't sit outside without having to hear it even louder. We've approached them. I've been told I'm being unreasonable 'because it's only a radio'.

I can't stand it when others tell me I should live in the middle of nowhere/a field. Yes please, I'd bloody love to. Unfortunately we, and they, cannot afford to live in a house which isn't attached to another house. We are considerate of this, they are not. It is your right to enjoy your home as you wish, and theirs, but they are stopping us from doing that. We can't stop them but they stop us. I can't decide whats worse; being so inconsiderate that it just doesnt occur to you that others don't want to hear your noise, or that they just don't care if it is a nuisance. I don't expect to hear silence or nothing but birdsong and ticking clocks, but other peoples forcefed music for several hours a day, even at a moderate volume, is unfair.

jamdonut Thu 30-May-13 14:34:23

alabasterangel that sounds awful. And shock at having to declare the noise issue!!

jamdonut Thu 30-May-13 14:35:06

quoteunquote Good idea lol smile

frillyflower Sun 02-Jun-13 10:53:35

Our constantly barbecuing neighbours have now bought an ugly trampoline with a big black net and their neighbours have bought one too.

Now our garden even more unusable.

Thump thump shriek shriek. Stinking smoke. Yesterday we had loud music all day too.

Nice for them though as we have lovely pretty quiet garden full of blossom and flowers.

Makes me want to get a siren and blast it at them at five minute intervals for 24 hours.

quoteunquote Sun 02-Jun-13 11:48:49

I thing all MN should play the above link at midday today.

NewGirlInTown Sun 02-Jun-13 14:26:48

Frilly flower, I feel your pain. Why can't these wretched people end up living next door to one another. Nowhere seems safe from such lack of consideration.

jamdonut Sun 02-Jun-13 20:51:30

Frillyflower- sounds almost like our neighbours, although they are not constantly barbecuing - they just have loads of noisy friends over,with equally noisy children who apparently don't get on with each other, judging by the screaming and crying!

TinBox Sun 02-Jun-13 20:52:45

I really struggle to understand how people can be so uptight about normal everyday noise.

FryOneFatManic Sun 02-Jun-13 21:12:44

I do sometimes play my radio in the garden on a nice day. But not loud, just loud enough for me to hear as I keep it close to me.

This is an issue that requires consideration on both sides. People shouldn't have music excessively loud, but equally, it isn't fair for some people to expect others not to have some music at a reasonable level if they want.

Boomba Sun 02-Jun-13 21:23:49


you lot would have a BLUE FIT!! if you lived in my house. From 3 different sides today I have had reggae, spanish guitars and what i can only describe as 'german death metal'

I enjoy it though

i find it completely mental, that people would desire peace and quiet all the time to the extent that you would put in a formal complaint; without even telling the 'offenders' that it bothers you!! NUTS!

TinBox Sun 02-Jun-13 21:29:18

I agree with you Boomba.

Today I've heard lots of different music, someone practising the accordion, neighbours chatting in the garden.

I like hearing people getting on with their happy lives around me. It makes me feel like I am part of a vivacious community, and would cheer me up if I was feeling sad or lonely.

If any of this annoyed me, I would speak to the 'offender' personally before I did anything as drastically passive aggressive as put in a formal complaint.

BriansBrain Sun 02-Jun-13 21:35:11

I don't see anything wrong in having music playing on a sunny afternoon in the garden.

It's no worse than lawn mowing, dogs barking or children laughing/bickering during play.

HalfSpamHalfBrisket Sun 02-Jun-13 21:38:58

My next door neighbours do not work, and with the faintest ray of sun they are outside in the afternoon and evening drinking beer and shrieking (and playing music, of course). They then invite friends over to shriek with them. Then, as the blokes get shoutier and swearier, the children start screaming. Then the blokes start to deliberately wind the children up.
I dream of just lying in the sun, in peace. I work in a school and used to be able to come home and have 1/2 an hour before starting work but I don't even bother trying now.

exoticfruits Sun 02-Jun-13 22:37:48

It is a lot worse , BriansBrain. I have no objection to normal, everyday life,but having to suffer other people's music choice is quite different and completely unnecessary- they can have earphones and not inflict it on others.

Binkybix Sun 02-Jun-13 22:47:52

I think the point is that music is a lot worse than children screaming from your point if view, but not necessarily for others, which is where the give ant take comes into it.

If you've got a few people round then obviously headphones don't work, and they're not necessarily practical if doing something active in the garden.

Boomba Sun 02-Jun-13 22:56:35

the neighbours at the bottom of our garden seem to have an endless party in the summer and play godawful 80s rock ballards....they are very quick to growl at my kids for screeching/harrassing the cat/climbing on the wall etc

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