Gospel church fined over 'noisy' services
Friday 06 April 2012
A gospel church was fined after nearby residents complained about its services being too noisy, it has been revealed today.
Deacon Everton Lewis-Gordon and pastor Sean Samuel appeared before magistrates in Nottingham last month charged with noise nuisance after residents complained to the council about the level of noise coming from services at New Generation Church in David Lane, Basford, in the city.
The charges against the deacon were withdrawn but Samuel was fined a total of £360 and ordered to pay costs of £300 to Nottingham City Council at the hearing.
Nottingham City Council brought the prosecution following complaints from local residents about the level of noise - amplified singing, music and preaching - coming from the church over the last four years.
Noise pollution officers judged the volume of noise coming from the services to be a nuisance under the Environmental Protection Act after recording sound levels during services, some which could last up to three hours, Nottingham City Council said.
The local authority tried to resolve the situation between the church and residents, and also gave advice to the church on ways of reducing the noise levels.
But after no sign of improvement was seen, nor heard, the matter was taken to the courts.
Alex Norris, portfolio holder for community safety and area working councillor said: “We have tried everything we can to bring this matter to a resolution without resorting to court.
“Unfortunately, over a prolonged period of time, the unacceptable noise levels - sometimes above the traffic noise on the busy road - have not reduced and we have felt that prosecution was the only option open to us.
“Noise nuisance of all kinds - including amplified music - can seriously undermine people's peaceful enjoyment of their own homes and we will always act to protect that right.”
Lewis-Gordon and Samuel appeared at Nottingham Magistrates' Court on March 21 charged with noise nuisance under the Environmental Protection Act.
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