Noise row hits Harry Potter printers

Living near the Harry Potter printers is far from magical for some residents.The noise from Clay's in Bungay, which is churning out millions of copies of the book, has become a problem for the factory's neighbours.

Living near the Harry Potter printers is far from magical for some residents.

The noise from Clay's in Bungay, which is churning out millions of copies of the book, has become a problem for the factory's neighbours. A petition has been organised protesting against the noise and vibrations - but it is still a mystery exactly what is causing it.

Waveney District Council has investigated the problem, which started last month, but is none the wiser as to where the noise is coming from. The printer has recently installed new chiller units, which have not yet received planning permission, and some residents believe this is causing the noise. Others blame new printing presses.

Alice Stimson, 80, of Outney Road, said: “I can hear it now, but at night it is the worst. It stops me sleeping. I can feel the vibration through the floor and everything rattles. You just lie there listening to it. We have all complained, there has even been a petition with a whole page of signatures, but it hasn't made any difference.”

One Webster Street resident, Chan Rivers, has been forced to sleep at relatives' homes to get away from the noise. And Patricia Brassel, 71, of Webster Street, has had to move into a different bedroom to try to get away from the noise.

She said: “It is a continuous noise, like a motor noise. One night I got up because I thought they had parked a lorry just outside and left the engine running. People cannot enjoy their gardens. I am nearly 72 and I really think I deserve a bit of peace and quietness and a good night's sleep. Clay's do not seem to be interested.”

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Victor Moyes, 88, of Outney Road, said: “It is only a few yards from my back door. The noise is continuous, though it is worse for some of my neighbours than it is for me. For light sleepers it is a real problem.”

Acoustic consultants from the council and Clays have been looking into the problem, and further tests are planned after they were unable to pinpoint the major cause of the noise.

A Waveney spokesman said: “Waveney District Council is treating this as a 'statutory nuisance' investigation which means that officers are satisfied that, in their opinion, there is an unreasonable interference with residents' right to peace and quiet. It is quite important to stress at this stage that investigations have not been able to trace the precise source of the noise/noises and the chiller units, that are the subject of the planning application, may or may not be connected to the problem.

“A retrospective planning application has been received for the chiller units, and steps are being taken to ensure that the potential acoustic impacts of this unit are considered properly. Residents also have the opportunity to comment on planning applications through the usual process of neighbour consultations.

“We would like to reassure residents that Waveney's environmental protection team is continuing to work closely with Clays to resolve the issue.”

Clays declined to comment yesterday.

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