Lowestoft bar’s loud music shook neighbour’s walls

An owner of a Lowestoft bar was fined �300 yesterday after he breached a noise abatement order by playing loud amplified music which shook a neighbour's walls and floors.

Robert Stephenson, of Legends Bar in Commercial Road, pleaded guilty to contravening or failing to apply with a noise abatement notice which been imposed in July last year due to long-running noise complaints from nearby residents.

Lowestoft Magistrates' Court heard Stephenson breached the order by playing amplified 'tech dance' style music on the night of February 19.

The music was so loud that Waveney District Council environmental health officers could not even talk properly to the neighbour who had complained about the noise.

Victoria Nutley, prosecuting for the district council, said: 'The volume was so intrusive is was not possible to hold a conservation at normal levels.

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'The wall and floors were vibrating to the music.'

A council officer was of the opinion that the noise coming from Legends would interfere with people's sleep.

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Magistrates heard that the noise abatement order had been imposed after people had been complaining for 18 months about the levels of amplified music.

However Stephenson had not complied with the order, leading to one previous conviction dating from May for contravening or failing to comply with the notice.

Stephenson had been fined �1,000 for that breach and ordered to pay �200 in court costs.

The court was told that environmental health officers were also investigating another alleged breach of the notice which is said to have taken place on Saturday.

Describing last July's noise abatement notice Miss Nutley said: 'Unfortunately that has not resolved the issue and complaints have continued to be reported.'

Miss Nutley said the council had been involved in discussions with Stephenson about the problem since 2009 to try and resolve the noise problem.

She added: 'Prosecution is very much the last resort and we do not do it lightly.'

Representing himself in court Stephenson, 51, of Station Square, Lowestoft, said he was under the impression Legends was properly sound-proofed with the music system in a cellar with a noise level of 43 decibels at the time of February's offence.

At the time of February's offence Mr Stephenson said he was not aware of any techno music playing and there had only been a handful of customers in Legends.

He had now removed the music system and replaced it with a juke box which had fixed noise levels and could not be interfered with by customers.

Stephenson said: 'I am trying to do what I can to eliminate this problem.'

Stephenson, who had originally pleaded not guilty, was fined �300 and ordered to pay �200 costs.


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