Housing nuisance requests process

How we deal with Environmental Health Housing Nuisance service requests

If you think you have a severe complaint or concern regarding the condition of your home or a neighbouring property, please contact us. Your case will be discussed and may be referred to the Environmental Health Housing Team. 

Officers will contact you and discuss the service request and will probably arrange an inspection. 

The role of the environmental health housing team is to assess whether the situation can be classed as a statutory nuisance.

A statutory nuisance is defined by the Environmental Protection Act 1990 as being 'prejudicial to health or a nuisance', e.g. the keeping of pigeons, the health of all parties taken into account is that of an average person rather than individual health.

A nuisance is something which materially affects the comfort of your life or has a substantial effect on the quality of your life. You should also bear in mind that you must be reasonable in your expectations, people have different ways of living, it is only when it becomes an unreasonable interference that it is a nuisance. Some situations maybe annoying to some people but may not be a statutory nuisance.

The council has a duty to deal with statutory nuisance and an officer will make an assessment based on:

  • when the situation happens 
  • how often it happens
  • how long it lasts
  • the volume or intensity of the problem
  • the location and characteristics of the area.

If we believe a statutory nuisance exists, we will serve an abatement notice which, if breached, may result in court proceedings. Enforcement procedures are available where informal action is unsuccessful or inappropriate.

Download the Public Protection Enforcement policy (pdf)


You may be asked to collate evidence and provide witness statements to help Officers. Evidence needs to be true, to the best of your knowledge and belief.

Deliberately stating anything in your evidence which is false could make you liable to prosecution.

Private / Civil Nuisance 

Any person affected by any form of nuisance has the right to complain directly to the Magistrates’ Court under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, Section 82. The Magistrate will need to be convinced that the problem amounts to a statutory nuisance