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Nuisance neighbours


Answer

The police may attend incidents like this and can ask the organisers to take appropriate action to reduce the noise. However, the police have no powers of prosecution for noise offences, and it may be necessary for you to contact the Environmental Health Department at your local authority.

See the website in Related Information to find your local authority and to report noise pollution.


Answer

You could speak to your neighbour about the problem as they may not be aware it is happening.

Unless there is any evidence of the dog being mistreated then the RSPCA will not be able to help. If you do believe that the dog is being mistreated, you can contact the RSPCA via their telephone number 0300 1234 999.

The noise could be classed as a noise nuisance so you would need to report it to the Environmental Health department of your local authority.

See the website in related information to find your local authority.


Answer

For harassment to have been committed there must be a 'course of conduct' (i.e. two or more related occurrences). The behaviour does not necessarily have to be violent in nature, but would need to have caused some alarm or distress with an element of oppression required. The further apart the incidents are, the less likely that an offence of harassment has occurred. However, all the circumstances of the incident(s) will be taken into account when determining whether or not an offence has been committed.

The law takes into account the "reasonable person" test. Basically this means that if it was felt that a typical person (i.e. the average person on the street) would have acted in the same scenario under the same circumstances. , and would have been alarmed or distressed by the behaviour, then it may be considered that an offence has been committed. The offender knows or ought to know that their behaviour would cause the victim to be alarmed or distressed.

  • Example : A lives at number 2 and B lives at number 4, there is a dispute over a fence. A keeps going round to B's house to complain, enters into a verbal argument and refuses to leave until B agrees to consider his request. This happens every night for a fortnight. B is fed up and has told A not to visit any more, B is feeling distressed about A's constant visits. A is aware that his behaviour will cause distress to B as he is hoping to wear him down into removing the fence.

The above is an example of the type of behaviour that could be considered harassment without fear of violence. Harassment with fear of violence is when a person whose cause of conduct causes another to fear on at least two occasions, that violence will be used against him/her, and who knows or ought to know that his/her behaviour will cause fear of violence on each of the occasions is guilty of an offence.

The law still takes into account the "reasonable person" test when making a decision as to whether harassment with fear of violence has occurred. If your average person would not have feared violence, it may not be considered an offence.

  • Example : A and B are neighbours and A is upset over a fence. A goes round to B's house every night for a week threatening violence to B and damage to the fence if B does not take the fence down. B fears violence, as A is very aggressive in manner. A is aware that his behaviour is aggressive and is hoping to intimidate B into taking the fence down.

There are two ways you can deal with this situation; through the police or the civil courts. If you decide to start civil proceedings, you can contact the Citizens Advice Bureau (please see the link in Related Information to find your nearest one), or alternatively, inform your local policing team via their non-emergency 101 number. Where there are threats of violence you should always inform the police and they will treat the matter as a high priority.

For more information please see the websites in Related Information.


Answer

If the car alarm is a false activation and not someone attempting to steal or break into the vehicle it would be advisable in the first instance to speak to your neighbour about the problem as they may not be aware what is happening. If the problem persists you should contact the Environmental Health department at your local council who have powers to deal with nuisance car alarms.

See the website in related information to find your local authority.

If you do see someone trying to break into a vehicle contact the police on 999 immediately.


Answer

Generally, yes you can. However, you cannot repair vehicles on a road if,

  • it is during the course of a business
  • it is for gain or reward
  • it causes annoyance to people in the vicinity

The only exception is that if the repairs are carried out following an accident or break down where it was necessary to do the repairs on the spot or within 72 hours.

If it is a one off repair then this is not likely to breach the law but anyone who repeatedly repairs vehicles on the road is likely to commit an offence.


Answer

Getting the police involved in this type of issue is not always the best thing to do in the first instance, as it can escalate the issue and cause more problems for both parties.

The best thing to do, where possible, is to speak to your neighbour about the problem and try and resolve it between yourselves. If you have tried, or feel that, for whatever reason, it is not an option then you should speak to your local neighbourhood policing team.

If you keep the ball and refuse to give it back then you may eventually end up facing prosecution yourself as you are technically committing theft.


Answer

Whilst not recommended, children aged 5 to 16 are allowed to drink alcohol at home or on other private premises. Although there may be no offence of supplying alcohol, there may be issues relating to child protection.

It is advisable to contact the parents of the children involved to inform them of the situation. If you are concerned, you can also contact the NSPCC on 0808 800 5000 or you can report it directly to them via the following link: NSPCC report child abuse

Contact your local police force

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