Northern Ireland

Belfast City Council noise team deals with 6,000 cases a year

The Belfast Noise Squad
Image caption The Belfast City Council noise team deal with around 6,000 complaints a year.

The specialist noise team at Belfast City Council are dealing with an average of 6,000 complaints each year.

Loud music, barking dogs and faulty house alarms are the most common complaints.

The city council noise team was created in 2000 and has the power to seize items and issue fixed penalties.

The Belfast based team are one of three in the UK who were followed by a TV crew for a new BBC programme to be shown on Monday.

'Noise Squad' follows the Belfast team and those from York and Westminster as they deal with a host of issues from modern city life.

Belfast City Council has the only dedicated night time noise service in the whole of the island of Ireland.

In the last year the noise team has issued 374 warning notices, 46 noise abatement notices, 14 fixed penalties and seven prosecutions have been made.

Councillor Pat McCarthy, chairman of the council's health and environmental services committee, thinks the programme will give viewers an insight into the work the noise team do.

"The work of our noise team can't be underestimated and I think this series will be a real eye-opener for people when they see the kind of things our staff are dealing with," he said.

"Often they are subject to threats or verbal abuse - sometimes even physical abuse - and all because they are trying to improve people's quality of life and ensure everyone gets a decent night's sleep. It can be very challenging work."

'The Noise Squad' starts on Monday 28 November at 11:00 GMT on BBC One and will run for three weeks, Monday-Friday.