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A PURGE on noisy neighbours proved so successful that it left council officials with a major headache - where to store all the stereo equipment they had seized.

A PURGE on noisy neighbours proved so successful that it left council officials with a major headache - where to store all the stereo equipment they had seized.

Storage space at Waveney District Council's offices in Lowestoft had become so crammed with confiscated hi-fi systems, loudspeakers, CDs and record collections that the environmental health team had to find a solution.

It came up with the idea of contacting schools. And staff and children at the Dell Primary, at Oulton Broad, have just been the grateful recipients of some of the seized machines after their sound system broke down last term.

In total, the Dell has received more than 50 pieces of equipment from the council and will farm out some of it to other schools in the south Lowestoft area once safety checks have been completed.


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Ken Sale, Waveney's portfolio holder for the environment, said: 'The council receives about 700 noise complaints each year, the majority of which arise from the irresponsible use of domestic equipment such as stereos and speaker systems.

'We have accumulated quite a collection and had considered recycling what we could and destroying the rest, but it seemed quite wasteful.

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'Then we heard that Dell School's sound system had broken down.

'The school's head, Beryl Hindes, told us they had the facility to examine and safety-test any equipment we might like to hand over and they could pass on any good- quality items on to other similar establishments.

'This provided us with a brilliant and worthwhile solution.'

Officers in Waveney district intervene in extreme cases of noise disturbance and serve about 50 abatement notices every year.

Of these, about a dozen end up in court, where confiscation orders can be made by magistrates and the sound equipment ends up in the hands of the council.

Mrs Hindes said: 'We were unfortunate to suffer a failure in our sound system before Christmas, so when we heard that Waveney's environmental health team was looking to pass on equipment we told them we'd be more than happy to receive it.'

She added: 'This will be an enormous benefit to our school, and I think it is appropriate that equipment seized as a result of anti-social behaviour now has a new and useful purpose in the community.'

Mrs Hindes added that the school's technician, Paul Godfrey, would check all the equipment to make sure no dangerous modifications had been made to it.

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