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When you Should Contact your Local Environmental Health Department

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 14 Jan 2021 | comments*Discuss
Air Quality Environmental Health

If you have already read a number of articles contained on this website, you will have begun to realise that your local authority’s environmental health department covers a vast remit and they often your first port of call if you are experiencing problems with your neighbours or within the community as a whole.

It can be far quicker to obtain a resolution if you contact your environmental health department first as opposed to calling the police when dealing with many neighbourhood issues. In fact, in most instances, even if you call the police, they might refer you back to the environmental health department first. Here are the many issues that the environmental health department would deal with:

Air Quality

If your enjoyment of your own property is being affected by a Neighbour’s Bonfire or barbecue or if an industrial chimney is causing a problem.

Contaminated Land

Where you suspect that chemicals or associated materials have polluted either a water supply or have contaminated land.

Dangerous Dogs

If you have a problem with a Dangerous Or Nuisance Dog in your area or you have been attacked or been threatened by an attack from a dog. You’d also contact the department if you're concerned about persistent dog fouling outside your house or on local parks.

Food Standards

If you are concerned about the hygiene of a particular business which is manufacturing and/or selling food or drink to the public, or you have suffered a health problem as a result of eating suspected contaminated food.

Noise Levels

If you are suffering from the effects of Excessive Noise as the result of a neighbour’s party, loud music, a nearby factory or some other kind of business which is generating excessive noise or if you have an Incessantly Barking Dog in the neighbourhood.

Pest Control

If your own home or a nearby property has been plagued by pests which could be anything from a wasps’ nest to rodent control.


If flytipping has occurred on your street or if you suspect a neighbour to be guilty of flytipping elsewhere.

Graffiti and Flyposting

If graffiti or flyposting is happening in your area, your environmental health department will also deal with this.


If a neighbour is guilty of not disposing of their household waste correctly, or if you are experiencing a lot of litter on your property or street as the result of a business nearby.

Of course, in many of these instances, the problem can often be resolved by speaking to the relevant neighbour or nearby business first. However, if you’re unable to obtain a satisfactory resolution to a particular problem from the person(s) involved, or you don’t know who might be responsible for causing the problem, then all of the above fall under the jurisdiction of your local authority’s environmental health department. They have the powers and the weight of the law behind them to begin an investigation and to enforce a resolution, be that through the courts, if necessary.

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Could you please advise, my next door neighbours almost daily burning plastic, with my 2 year old son we cannot even come from house to play in the garden or open window. Apart of that I'm pregnant and from that smell straight away start having headache. Could you please give me advice where should I complain and if I can do it as incognito, as in this house we moved not long time ago and those neighbours don't look friendly, I'm scared.
Burning plastic - 14-Jan-21 @ 2:18 PM
My neighbour burns his garden waste once a week, which causes me to close my windows and suffer in the summer months in the garden with the smoke and smell. He has 8 geese which he houses on the other side of the fence. They are quite noisy at times. He also keeps a Cockerell which forever crows at all hours through the night. And the last one is he also puts all of the chickens and geese dropping under an open lean to for his compost just on the other side of the garden fence, which cause so many flies in the summer months that we can't enjoy our time in the garden or even enjoy any food we have to eat without having to swat the flies away. What is my solution to this problem?RAN
Caeser - 14-Jan-21 @ 12:13 PM
I have neighbors that continually harass myself and my family. Initially it was in regards to me doing vehicle repairs at home even though the attached neighbor is doing repairs as well, which unfortunately resulted in me having to sell my house because I was unable to keep my payments in order. Now the new story is me abusing my dogs which resulted in the spca having to visit my home every week, even though the neighbor in quest is throwing tantrums on the road in their presence the spca inspector still entertains them. I'm honestly at my whits end with the issues... I'm sure that there's some sort of help in can get to atleast allow me a peaceful stay in the interim that I'm still waiting for for the final paperwork on the sale of my house
Shane - 13-Jan-21 @ 11:39 AM
My new neighbour below is so naturally loud I have vibrating in my front room and have too live with headphones every day I'm hone...no fault of his but the flat I'm in is shocking..I hear him burp cough ect and that's with headphones on .something needs to be done about the block I'm in
Stu - 12-Jan-21 @ 7:20 PM
My neighbour is not using the bins - they have food waste and dirty nappies and other household waste and litter strewn across both their front and back gardens. Foxes are chucking it around and we've spotted mice too. Can you advise on how to deal with this.
Sonia - 2-Jan-21 @ 11:46 PM
My next door neighbours cook multiple catering size pots of very foul smelling food in their garden. The smell is nauseating. We're lucky if we get 2/3days a week where we're able to go into our garden. Each week they dump loads of sacks of food stuff/containers in our shared side alley and outside our shared gate to the street. Foxes are forever ripping open these sacks. At the moment it looks like a fly tipping outside our gate. People come around and pick alot of this food up. Vans/taxis all sorts of times. I feel our house is worthless. They are renting. Is this allowed?
Debbie - 30-Dec-20 @ 10:46 AM
Our neighbours are very hostile and aggressive when approached about loud banging swearing and arguing all hours of the day and on occasion midnight waking me and my wife up. Their style of living is horrendous and their back garden has a very large pile of household waste that’s been sitting for 8months now. Their tv is so loud at night even with the windows open that I’m to the point of pulling my hair when stressed. They have multiple cars parked on the street of which one is outside our bedroom window. I’m at witts end and in real need of help.
Shane - 21-Dec-20 @ 6:17 PM
My next door neighbour has been harassing me and my daughter for 11 months now, hes putting rotten food under our fence which stinks and I'm so worried its going to cause rats and other vermin, what can I do about his nasty evil vile way he is treating us and because he "owns " his house he has more rights,
Chrissy - 20-Dec-20 @ 12:14 PM
the state of the side of thehouse and back garden145 hollymount road overgrownbramblesnettlesdirty cloting over 5 yearsthe front fence fallingdownreported to fortis for5 yerspromised acyion little done affectsourhealth although k parties wokenupay 4 am in morningbanging musix tennant not loived therefor 6 months when doesnoiseylate nightduring the week reported for 5 yeas nothing donej herrubbishdoesonto ourproperty
beefyl - 17-Dec-20 @ 1:00 PM
My upstair neighbour never puts her buckets out now she dumping her rubbish outside our back bedroom window
Sj - 11-Dec-20 @ 9:12 AM
My next door neighbours treat their rented home like a student dorm. They have a van too big to fit the driveway so it protrudes well over the pavement and pedestrians have to walk on the toad to get past, they also never take their bins from the pavement, which blocks pedestrian access even more. My children and other children can’t safely play outside because they can’t get past the van without the danger of possibly being hit by a passing vehicle in the road. There seems to be no guidelines on this sort of situation.
Cazz - 10-Dec-20 @ 12:12 PM
My neighbours put their bin out side near to my back garden.There is one bin without a lid and it causes a terrible smell. Especially in summer where it isn’t bearable.Now it is worse they put a lot of rubbish just by my back garden and we mostly use our back door for going out or in.You can imagine how disgusting to see rubbish just outside of your house and it’s being nearly a week now I put a polite notice on my fence but the problem is as it is
Mana - 9-Dec-20 @ 5:04 PM
my neighbour hashad a mouldy sofa out in her back garden for over 3 years. Its evidently mouldy and has began to bow the fence between our houses although that is her boundary. The most trivial yet annoying part is that when It rains the constant dripping of water onto the sofa even when its stopped its irritating. I dont know what i can do or who i can contact if anyone. The person in the house is not approachable to discuss this with either.
CATH - 8-Dec-20 @ 11:28 PM
My 81 year old MiL has had a tiny woodburning stove for at least 15 years, she relies on it to heat her home. She had it installed professionally, has it swept regularly and only burns the recommended block fuel on it. At the start of lockdown she was told by the council that one of her neighbors had complained about the smoke from it and is now terrified to use it. Tonight she phoned me and admitted she was going cold rather than use it because of the neighbors making a fuss, but also said that she had spoken to them all and none of them admitted to making the complaint. What can I do? I am worried about her health and wellbeing.
wan90 - 5-Dec-20 @ 5:33 PM
My neighbour is keeping livestock in their garden. Pigs, all different poultry, goats and sometimes horses in their garden. It is not a large garden, this is causing rats as we have found several dead ones on our property. I am concerned for the welfare of the pigs as their enclosure is very small and you can often hear them squeal. Also i dont think they have all the relevant licences, CPH no or registered as a small holding to be able to keep such animals. This causes so many problems with pests. Who do I contact to look into this as RSPCA are not interested.
Mabel - 5-Dec-20 @ 12:52 PM
our neighbours is a hoarder. He has been since moving into the house at least 27 years ago. He won't throw anything away, not rubbish, but boxs and boxs of stuff in every room.He has nearly every toy and item of clothing belonging to his now grown up daughter who also lives there.He works full time and on his days off he stays in bed till late so never has time to do much. He only has enough room to walk through each room. He lives in his bedroom. His loft is so full he can't get anything else up there. He has doors put up each end of the alley between his house and the other neighbour. His shed is bursting at the seams as well as his garage. My worry is that if his house had a fire, it wouldn't be easy to extinguish and would soon rip through our house. And the weight of stuff in the loft is in danger of bringing the ceiling down and possibly affecting our loft as well.
Barbara - 1-Dec-20 @ 6:52 PM
Neighbour had bathroom done, we live in a complex and he's left all rubbish in the walk through looked eyesore reckons he sorting it in couple weeks.... I wudnt mind he works at the local tip
Kat - 28-Nov-20 @ 9:29 AM
My neighbors are filthy, you can smell their home in the summer time. Their dog is a menace, barking non stop because it's so bored, their cat is sick and cries when it pees, and that breaks my heart. They have a bird which never sees any light or gets fresh air which is inhumane. RSPCA won't rescue them. Their rubbish in both front and back yards attracts rats which my dog chases and kills leaving carcases in my yard. I have asked them to please start looking after themselves. They are mentally ill and need help but nobody will do anything. They are ex service persons and very high up in the church which makes it impossible for me to complain and get results. This is the world we live in unfortunately.
Jo - 22-Nov-20 @ 9:37 AM
Hi I’m trying to get a load of help for my neighbour as he has no heating ??? When British Gas took out his condemned fire they left o hole in the fire place and that is how he has lived for yrs , please please I need help to sort out my neighbours house
MrB - 19-Nov-20 @ 3:48 PM
Kindly help me with my neighbor who is making sofas. This this matching that makes big noise and horrible spray that mekes me not to breath. I can't make washing I can't do my washing because of the dust from them. Please help me where to complain. R
Fats - 16-Nov-20 @ 1:37 PM
I have a problem to report about a tenant and her daughter they are known to Radiation housing they are dirty there house is a tip that s fine if they want to live like that but are known to have old furniture at the side of there house people that live there have seen rats running from side of the house neighbours are wondering if the rats are living in the furniture radian have already asked her to get it moved several times but she hasn’t done it the house is a tip I think she and her daughter just don’t look after the property there is dirt and dirt but this is worse than that the person lives in Oak Road Pilands Estate Bursledon Southampton her name is Michele Kelly I think her house number is either 43 or 41 the road is Oak road and people don’t like her there sorry to do this but it needed doing. Yours sincerely, Hazel Knight
Haze - 14-Nov-20 @ 5:10 PM
I live in a semi detached house my neighbour not attached has a fire in their house and the fumes are coming into our house. What can I do to stop this from happening.
Sunny - 7-Nov-20 @ 4:17 PM
Hi , My neighbours moved in a month ago since then he is keeping a bag with rubbish in front of his yard and today he added a second one . The yard is very small very near to the street Main Street and my home. The houses arefacing the main road for God sake .What is wrong with some people ?! When you stay with the rubbish thrown in front of the main door the nasty people will throw even more rubbish at you . I am tired to clean up .from the street . What can be done about my neighbours?
Carmen - 21-Oct-20 @ 12:18 PM
There are homes going up down from our house and they let their trash blow all over the place. The ditch, fields and tree lines are full of trash. We have lived here 15 years and have always picked up litter on the road to to keep our neighborhood clean.The builder Enloes Custom Building will not do anything.They have been contacted but ignore our complaints. The whole neighborhood is not happy with them letting their trash blow everywhere. They have nothing on site to throw their trash in.
Barb - 18-Oct-20 @ 11:24 PM
Hi, I need some advise. My neighbour have couple of dogs and cats in the house. There is a lot of barking during the day which is not only disturbing but also makes me think of their welfare. I need advise on how and who I can contact to take a look into this.
Kitty - 15-Oct-20 @ 3:02 PM
We are experiencing an ongoing odour air pollution nuisance that is caused by a household that is filled with nothing but low IQ brain-dead individuals who occupy Flat 9 Firth House, Turin Street, Bethnal Green. Flat 9 Firth House is causing unreasonable levels and very long durations of washing powder and washing detergent odour nuisance by hanging their dryer vent hose outside their flat kitchen window for abnormally long periods of time which is making it impossible for me to open my bedroom window to let clean fresh air in to my bedroom. Other rooms that are also affected by this problem are the bathroom, toilet, and kitchen. For example, on the 22nd of September 2020 and Flat 9 Firth House has a dryer vent hose outside the window for the entire day from around 10:00am till 9:40pm (which is 11 hours and 40 minutes). I tried numerous times to open my bedroom window, bathroom window, and toilet window between the hours of 11:00am till 9.30pm and had to close my bedroom window, bathroom window and toilet window straight away otherwise my entire bedroom, bathroom, and toilet would of smelled of washing powder and washing detergent. Even when entering or existing the entrance to the apartment block I am forced to breath in washing powder and washing detergent odour as the neighbour’s dryer vent hose is hanging outside their flat kitchen window which is also not far from the entrance to the block (about 10 meters away). And as you may already know washing power and washing detergent contains very harmful chemicals and can cause serious health issues if a person is continually inhaling these chemicals. On the 24th of September 2020, 27th of September, and 3 of October exactly the same problem. The neighbour has their dryer vent hose hanging outside of their flat kitchen window for an abnormally long period of time causing a washing powder and washing detergent odour air pollution nuisance and making it impossible for me to open my bedroom window, bathroom window, and toilet window. I have recently contacted the Environmental Heath Department (which most likely won't do anything as I have heard they are useless). But if the Environmental Health Department do not do anything, or the neighbour continues being a nuisance, I will have to retaliate against the neighbour and cause them an extreme level of stress.
TheOne - 3-Oct-20 @ 12:58 PM
CAL09 you must live on the same street as me! Drug dealing, constant noise, fly tipping on the pavement as well as outside our house. Dog in a cage that barks all day and all night. Buying up other houses, turning them into cannabis farms. No understanding that there is a local refuse site not so far away even though they own cars. No action from environmental health or police. We have given up and now want to move but can't sell our house due to the points listed above. BOMBO it's very easy to accuse someone of racism, does that mean we just have to put up with this crap?Are you psychic? Do you have special powers to see the colour of our skin? I did the same as CAL09 and unsurprisingly we had a visit from the council. Unfortunately sometimes the word 'racist gives some people a card to do whatever they like. You automatically assume that CAL09 is white, just like you'll assume that i am because we have to be don't we? There is no way that any Jamaican family would stand for this, so are they racist too? Should we just put up with this then? We have nowhere to turn as the council's fear of being racist just plays into it. It's perfectly fine for groups of men to gather honking and spitting it up on the pavement, revving the engines of their cars, beeping their horns, selling drugs, that's fine. We don't get a say, clearly. Because we keep our house in the way it's supposed to be kept. Are we just supposed to dump rubbish in our gardens and just join in or give up? You try living near this sort of noise and nuisance. Playing the race card is just a cop out for laziness and inconsiderate crap. Everyone should be able to enjoy their homes without the encroachment of other people, you shouldn't have to wear earplugs to drown out the racket and you shouldn't feel embarrassed when your family visit because they don't have piles of fly tipped rubbish all over their own street and you do. This encourages racist feelings because it is rife in certain areas, maybe yo just don't notice BOMBO because you live like that? With complete disregard for other people? You're definitely an inverted racist. If you are a tw*t you are just a tw*t! Regardless of the colour of your skin. Trash is trash and trash comes in many colours.
Sicktodeath - 30-Sep-20 @ 1:04 PM
My neighbour is hording rubbish in his flat and my local council will do nothing about it can anyone help
Paichebookend - 29-Sep-20 @ 1:08 PM
Cal09 is a racist, thank you very much. And lmao, a white person playing the victim card. Priceless.
Bombo - 23-Sep-20 @ 4:47 PM
My neighbour has a wood garageshe has put in an old mattress lots of all furniture and other rubbish it’s been there for the last 15 years there is rats there now one of the windows has no glass on it my cat keeps going in and out of the garage bringing out baby rats I’m concerned that the mattress being so old and wet and damp and smellyis toxic to my cat? Please advise me what to do. Lily
Shadow - 22-Sep-20 @ 2:40 PM
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