Donington couple’s ‘noises off’ cry to timber firm

NOISE NUISANCE: Harry and Janice Wright claim that their idyllic life in Donington is being spoiled by a "constant droning noise"and wife affected by noise pollution from George Barnsdale and Sons' timber windows and doors factory in the village.  Photo by Tim Wilson.  SG010817-119TW.
NOISE NUISANCE: Harry and Janice Wright claim that their idyllic life in Donington is being spoiled by a "constant droning noise"and wife affected by noise pollution from George Barnsdale and Sons' timber windows and doors factory in the village. Photo by Tim Wilson. SG010817-119TW.
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A Donington couple claim their lives are being spoiled by a “constant droning noise” from a factory nearby.

Harry and Janice Wright are still waiting for their complaints against George Barnsdale and Sons to be resolved three and a half years after they first realised there was a noise problem.

What concerns us is the constant droning noise which is like a blue bottle being held beside your ear

Harry and Janice Wright, of Donington

The couple claimed that an environmental health protection team from South Holland District Council was due to visit the site on Tuesday when tests were to be carried out before a decision on what action to take would be made.

Mr Wright said: “We moved from a house in Swineshead to a bungalow in Donington because it was better for us in our senior years.

“But when we moved, we realised there was noise coming from George Barnsdale.

“We attended a meeting with the district council where I said that the problem would be solved quite easily with some insulation.

“George Barnsdale said it would look at it and some modifications were done when new buildings were put up in 2014 which they said would eliminate the noise.

“But nothing happened and what concerns us is the constant droning noise which is like a blue bottle being held beside your ear.”

The couple presented medical evidence to the district council after the noise problems continued over the last three months, including at night and weekends.

Mrs Wright said: “Up until a year ago, I couldn’t sleep because I could still hear it.

“I lost two and a half stone in weight because of stress and when the doctors tested my blood pressure, they found that it had shot up.

“So I had to be put on blood pressure tablets, anti-depressants and sleeping pills.

“We’ve got everything we want here for a couple of our age, but our lives are governed by the noise and it shouldn’t be.”

Stephen Wright, director of George Barnsdale and Sons, said: “George Barnsdale have been on this site since 1884 and we have invested a huge amount into our production facility over the years.

“We now have one of the most advanced timber window and door manufacturing plants in Europe, with sophisticated automation.

“Over the last 30 years, South Holland District Council has allowed development around our site and ten years ago, it allowed a development within a few metres of our dust extraction system which inevitably makes noise.

“This was despite the fact that we warned them it would potentially lead to complaints and the people who built the house also knowing that there would be noise from the site.

“Since then we have made huge efforts to reduce the noise from our machinery to the extent that it is now minute and we are currently changing all our forklifts to run on electric power to reduce the noise in our loading area..

“We take our responsibility to our local community very seriously and are working hard with the district council to ensure the environmental impact we have on our neighbours is kept to a minimum.”

A district council spokesman said: “Officers from our Public Protection team are currently working with the company in an effort to resolve noise issues raised by residents.

“We will continue to monitor the situation, offer support and work to deliver a satisfactory conclusion for the benefit of all parties.”

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