‘Noisy’ Hainault councillor loses court appeal over playing loud music

A Conservative Redbridge councillor has lost his appeal against a statutory noise notice.

Havering Magistrates’ Court today dismissed his claims that the council, which he represents, served him the notice unfairly after a “malicious” complaint was made about him playing loud music at his ground floor council flat.

Giving evidence today Cllr Poole, a council tenant, said: “This has been devastating for my reputation and my character.

“This has had coverage on the front page of the local press.”

He claimed a “malicious complaint” had been made against him by an aggrieved neighbour in his block after he had previously complained about her.

But this was dismissed by Nick Ham on behalf of the council, who said the noise nuisance was observed by the two officers and that is why the noise abatement notice was served.

Council noise officer Simon James and a colleague had been called to Cllr Poole’s flat in Bearing Way, Hainault twice in the early hours of August 28 last year.

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On the first occasion, at 12.40am, Cllr Poole agreed to turn the music down but, an hour later, the music could be heard louder than before.

On the second occasion the Conservative Party councillor, who was elected in May 2010, failed to answer the door, but the volume was turned down.

When officers rang the doorbell again they received no answer, the court heard.

Cllr Poole maintained he had no memory of the second call to his home and that he must have fallen asleep on the sofa.

“It’s possible that I rolled on to the remote while I was asleep and that turned the music up,” he told the court.

He added another possibility was “that a different track had a different noise level, like a mix tape”.

The Hainault ward councillor, who has previously sat on the board of Redbridge Homes said the CD must have finished while the two council officers knocked at his door and he lay sleeping.

Mr Ham said: “Mr Poole relies on a web of coincidences, and that the volume must’ve been turned up by some kind of accident.

“But I say a much more likely and logical explanation is that he didn’t answer the door because he wanted them to go away. He wanted to bury his head in the sand.”

Cllr Poole was ordered to pay �250 in costs.

In a written statement issued after the hearing, Cllr Poole said: “I feel it was a draconian sanction for what amounted to an hour-and-a-half of loud music.

“I respect the decision of the court and apologise to my neighbour for any nuisance caused.

“I wish to put this one off incident behind me and concentrate on serving my residents.”