New year, same old problems— will we get the support we need?
As we start a new academic year, noise incidents are already starting to multiply—see the list on this page, including two entries for repeated disturbances at a large student house in Alexandra Park.
It's too early to say whether this year will prove worse than academic 2017-18 (see chart). Much will depend on the kind of support residents receive from the universities, the police and the council. The chart is based on University of Bristol figures for complaints. One suspects the number of incidents is larger, and of course we need a matching tally for noise cases involving students of the University of the West of England, who also live in this area (case in point: Alexandra Park).
The University of Bristol agreed in the summer to discuss ideas presented by Chandos residents; an official response is awaited. (We know UoB has amended its policy on fines for party organisers; whether that's a meaningful change remains to be seen.) Neighbourhood policing, meanwhile, may get a boost this autumn as part of organisational changes in the police, but as yet there's still no sign local police will use powers under the ASB, Crime and Policing Act 2014 to shut down parties—that's what happens in Durham, according to a policewoman there I corresponded with a few weeks ago. As for Bristol City Council, the Alexandra Park case may provide a telling test of its noise-enforcement procedures. ______________________
This site aims to assist residents in Redland, Cotham, Kingswood, Clifton and other areas close to the University of Bristol that are popular with students but have a history of night-time noise disturbances. I am eager to work with local residents' groups. Join my email list (see top menu) to stay up to date—45 other people already have!
I will keep pushing for better responses from all of these bodies. In the meantime, I have revamped the website to provide more-useful information, and make it easier to find. (There's more work still to do!) The new buttons on the home page are there to help you respond to noise incidents. I ask you to copy me in when you have a complaint (whether or not you submit a complaint to the university), and I'm interested to know what responses you get if you contact the police or council.
I also want to know more (and asap) about Very Large Parties, characterised by doormen outside, very loud music, and large numbers in attendance. If one of these things is in progress, please let me know. I'm usually contactable until at least 1am. These big events should be the top priority for action, and they're the ones where I think the police are most likely to intervene. (But we shall see .... ) They're also the ones most likely to generate media coverage, which could be helpful to us in getting the authorities to wake up and act.
If you want to comment about anything on the site (or anything you think is missing!), feel free to drop me an email at email@example.com.