The police refused to get involved and passed us to the council who juggled us back and forth between departments. ‘Leanne’ of Redditch
‘Leanne’ and her partner were Council tenants. They suffered extensive, targeted anti-social behaviour. This included loud noise at all hours, inappropriate shouting out the window, hate crime and accusations of ‘targeting” him specifically. They asked him politely to stop many times when he was doing DIY at late hours (two to six am). The situation worsened. There were serious threats of violence where the perpetrator tried to ‘recruit’ anyone he could to ‘burn the people downstairs’. ‘Leanne’ and her partner couldn’t sleep, were constantly stressed, and angry because they were often housebound.
They have feared for their lives “The police refused to get involved and passed us to the council who juggled us back and forth between departments. Eventually, the tenant was evicted from their property for threatening the council’s officers with a knife. In his home was evidence of planning to make incendiary devices he had often told many people he was going to use on us.”
ASB Help comments: it is wrong that only when Council officers were threatened, was action taken. In a similar situation today, ‘Leanne’ could activate the Community Trigger to insist on a case review.
“Discovering that no authority had the right to enter the property and turn off the music which had been left playing was extremely shocking and demoralising. If you cannot find respite from the world at home where does that leave you?” JA, Leicester
JA owns his house but it soon became a place where could no longer feel at home, thanks to the behaviour of his neighbours. They played music loudly at all times of the day and into the early hours. Once they left music playing and left the house for the evening. The authorities had no right to enter the property and stop the music making life unbearable for JA.
The neighbours were also spitting from the 3rd floor of the house into the yard, foul and abusive language. “We were tired and frustrated at the lack of support. Discovering that no authority had the right to enter the property and turn off the music which had been left playing was extremely shocking and demoralising. It could have continued for months day and night….. If you cannot find respite from the world at home where does that leave you?”
Finally the original problem tenants were moved. Yet JA has new problem neighbours, talking loudly through the night until 5 am. They are waiting for similar action to be taken.
My health has deteriorated, we cannot enjoy our home, do not invite friends or family to visit, nor am I able to do my job as effectively as I should because I am always tired. We no longer trust the authorities. ‘Claire’ of North London
“We are Council tenants and have suffered so much. Our neighbour makes late night noise, has threatened us, cut down our tree branches, damaged our property, left rubbish on our doorstep, fails to maintain her garden, and smokes dope which seeps into our flat. Fighting and shouting above our head, verbal abuse and false accusations have been going on for six years.”
‘Claire’ and her partner finally got evidence in the form of recordings of late night noise and, thanks to a hard working ASB officer at the Local Authority, got an injunction. But the Injunction was soon broken. “The court still does nothing to our neighbour who is very good at acting hard done by.”
“My health has deteriorated, we cannot enjoy our home, do not invite friends or family to visit, nor am I able to do my job as effectively as I should because I am always tired. We no longer trust the authorities.” Initially ‘Claire’ and her partner asked politely if the neighbour could stop making noise. They asked for mediation and she refused. They have spent 6 years recording diaries and reporting her behaviour yet their message to other victims is: Do not give up and try to get evidence.
We are in our 80s and strongly feel old age contributes to non action by the Local Authority. ‘John’ and ‘Wendy’, Exeter
‘John’ and ‘Wendy’ own their house and have suffered 10 years of continuous DIY. For weeks on end, early morning to late evening, weekends non-stop, with no courtesy warning of noise to come. Alterations to the neighbour’s house a few years ago are now being re-done. They comment: “The owner is DIY obsessive,almost manic. They have pit bull terriers which is a deterrent to re-confronting them. We are in our 80s and strongly feel old age contributes to non action by the Local Authority. Both of us still work and do voluntary work.” They feel the neighbours’ family intrude into their home and that there is no privacy.
‘Wendy’ dresses/undresses on the landing so as to feel unobserved. The neighbours’ children (now 11 and 13) sneer and smirk at them adding to their discomfort. “We have contacted Environmental Health (twice) with little active response – or a lack lustre response given too late. We are convinced old age bars us from useful help. The Police seem more willing to help but the “noise” factor bars them from so doing, thus they can only refer us to the Local Authority.” ‘John’ and ‘Wendy’ feel they have been discriminated against due to age. They advise victims to put pressure on their local authority and make sure they don’t dawdle and dither.