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  • Andrew Waller

* Hampton Park, 6 July: Yelling on street

(S005) Group of about 15 people shouting and making a great deal of noise on the street while walking through Redland at about 1-15am on 6 July.

Observed and recorded by me.

I went out to investigate a commotion in the street and saw a dozen or more people standing at the Hampton Road-Chandos Road junction, shouting and generally making substantial noise.

It wasn't immediately obvious why they were waiting there but after a few minutes, during which I had recorded some video, they were joined by several other people who left a nearby student house. These people were also yelling at the tops of their voices as they crossed the road to join the bigger group.

(I later received a complaint from a nearby resident about a loud gathering at the house mentioned. I now believe that the group had just left the house and were waiting for the tenants to lock up and join them.)

Once all were together, they set off into Hampton Road and walked the full length, maintaining a significant degree of non-stop shouting and loud talk. One male left the group, which was walking down the centre of the road, to stand on the pavement and urinate against a garden wall.

The hullabaloo continued round the bend into Cotham Hill, where the group turned south onto Whiteladies Road. I followed on the opposite footpath, hoping I might bump into a police officer—and was happy to see a patrol car coming towards me. I flagged down the vehicle and spoke to the driver, who was alone. He agreed to talk to the group and I saw him catch up and pull alongside them. However, any conversation must have been brief: the officer didn't get out of the vehicle and indeed drove off a minute or so later.

Only slightly subdued, the group turned into St Paul's Road and then disappeared into a large house near the junction with Arlington Villas, where there were disco lights and beat music coming from the basement.

The next day I polled some Noise Pages subscribers who live in the Hampton Park and Cotham Hill areas and learned that two residents had been disturbed by the shouting as the group passed their house. My wife also later told me she had been woken by noise in the street at around the time the group departed from Hampton Road.

One of the residents mentioned has since circulated details of the incident to senior figures at the university and called for a strong response.

I have reported this incident at some length as a prime example of street noise, which I suspect is the largest category of student noise—larger even than parties. It happens frequently but is hugely underreported, for the simple reason that even if victims are quick enough to look out of the window and see who is disturbing them, their identities are probably unknown and there is usually no address to connect them to. Hence, no means to prosecute a complaint.

In this case I think there is strong evidence to connect the group with what had taken place at the student house in Hampton Road, which is already the subject of a complaint to UoB by another resident.