Homeowners plagued by deafening din

FED-up residents claim their lives have been made a misery by the “deafening” noise made by a concrete ship at Ipswich Port.

Annie Davidson

FED-up residents claim their lives have been made a misery by the “deafening” noise made by a concrete ship at Ipswich Port.

The angry homeowners said they had been blighted by the din for more than two years and that pleas for help have fallen on deaf ears.

Peter Evans, of Hengrave Close in Stoke Park, has now formed NAG (noise abatement group) and a recent meeting attracted 30 residents who all claimed to have been affected by the racket.

Mr Evans said the intermittent noise had been tracked down to a concrete ship �used by Southern Cement, which unloaded at the docks on a regular basis.

He said: “It has just been horrendous. This has serious implications for many residents - all our homes are blighted by this as we would have to declare it if it we wanted to sell.”

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He described the noise as a humming noise which at its loudest became a “howl”.

Complaints have been made to Ipswich Borough Council and Babergh District Council but Mr Evans claimed environmental health officers had only visited when the noise was relatively low.

Des Pawson, of Wherstead Road, who formed NAG with Mr Evans, said he had been aware of the noise since August 2007.

“It is not just the actual noise which gets to people, it is the kind of noise and its continuous nature of that noise which is particularly distressing,” he said. “At night it gets right into your head and you just can't sleep.”

Steve Rock, environmental protection services manager at Ipswich Borough Council, said they were investigating the complaints.

A spokesman for Babergh District Council said: “Officers made two separate visits to the area to ascertain the nature of the problem and concluded on both occasions that the noise could not be considered as a statutory nuisance.”

Southern Cement has been running for a number of years and employs eight people.

General manager Barry Neale said: “Southern Cement is permitted to discharge cement by Ipswich Borough Council and is in regular communication with its environmental health officers.

“Up until recently this operation has been on-going for almost seven years without any apparent problem.

“Following an investigation which concluded in January 2009 we were informed by Ipswich Borough Council that it did not consider there to be any breach of legislation.

“We will, of course, co-operate with any formal investigation.”

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