Is Fife really the noisiest place to stay?

Has Fife the noisiest neighbours?
Has Fife the noisiest neighbours?

Householders in Fife made more complaints about noisy, messy neighbours than people anywhere else in the UK, a report has found.

An analysis of UK-wide council data found that Fife Council received 19,070 complaints about issues such as noise, animals, mess and household disrepair in the first nine months of last year – 53 per 1,000 residents.

It is the only Scottish Council area in the UK-wide top 10.

Glasgow, however, received one of the lowest volumes of complaints.

The report, from Churchill Insurance, found that more than 460,000 complaints were made UK-wide to local councils about neighbours and their behaviour, pets and property – 104,000 of these relating to filthy homes, messy gardens and vermin.

Martin Scott, head of Churchill home insurance, said: “These findings present a worrying picture of the effects other people and properties near our homes have on our lives. It’s a reminder to consider that our parties, pets and general property maintenance may be causing our neighbours undue amounts of stress.”

Noisy neighbours are the major cause of residential issues, with loud music, barking dogs or DIY also irritating.

In just nine months in 2013, councils had 200,120 noise complaints.

Across Britain, local authorities issued 4,283 noise abatement notices to persistently loud residents.

The condition of domestic premises, such as the state of garden and hedges, hygiene, vermin and pests, were the second-biggest gripes, accounting for 104,828 complaints.

Newcastle upon Tyne, Westminster and Stockton-on-Tees were the noisiest areas after Fife.

Roy Stewart, senior manager for protective services at Fife Council, said types of services could make it difficult to compare the situation across the UK – for example, a night-time noise team or pest control team might, in other areas, be the responsibility of external agencies and not counted in the report.

“We are very pro-active in publicising the range of ways in which people in Fife can report concerns, including online reporting, which may also lead to a higher number,” he said.

“Although every complaint is investigated fully, not every complaint is upheld. Indeed many, following initial investigation or even a simple phone call, can be resolved.”