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When you Should Contact your Local Environmental Health Department

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 3 Dec 2019 | 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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A new neighbour moved in couple of months back. We're living in an apartment block, most apartments are rented from same landlord. I had no problem at the beginning when my new neighbour was leaving rubbish bags in the stairwell landing for couple of days, as I thought it's going to be temporary until she gets removal sorted out. That never happened... She still has no rubbish removal bins and keeps storing her rubbish bags in the landing for 1-2 weeks! Asked our LL to remind neighbours to remove rubbish on a regular basis, but after about 3 days nothing has changed, so I left a note on her bags asking to remove. She went absolutely ballistic, attacking me that it's none of my business where she leaves these bags, how long they're there for and I'm not the LL to tell her what to do. Messaged my LL about the situation, no change for 4 days, same rubbish bags still there since 1,5 weeks... I'm sick of the situation, as she leaves the bags by the window centrally opposite to my front door, so the first thing I see opening the blind/ door is rubbish bags... I really don't know what else to do. Any advice?
Troger - 3-Dec-19 @ 9:56 AM
Since my neighbors roof behind my property has gone green this year it's getting in my open windows in my conservatory and getting in to my home and my dog and myself have an allergy and mites are present I already have a resperitory illness and costing me a fortune through my vet, is there anything that can be done about this through environmental Health please?
Jax - 28-Nov-19 @ 2:24 PM
Ever since my neighbor moved in its been hell, slamming doors, constant banging, fighting. They walk from room to room bang doors and stamping the feet, it gets really bad then he has 3 or 4 friends round, if tried talking about it, but he's always out his face on drugs and never listens just drools, sick of getting woken at 2/3 in morning most nights with his comings and goings,
Lumps - 4-Nov-19 @ 7:49 PM
We bought a house from a family that grain farms. We haven’t even owned the house a full year. Our house and property is next to some of the land they farm and they have a pole barn next door to our property. They store equipment there. They sold us our house and then built these 3 massive grain silos just a few feet from our house. They completely pulled one over on us by not disclosing this huge bit of info. We would have never bought the house and remodeled had we been told. We are out of city limits so we are in an unzoned area. So I couldn’t find a way to stop them from building the silos. They have threatened us after the epa tried to get involved. They didn’t pay their taxes on their farm or taxes on the land we bought for the year before we owned the house. They kept putting the bill in our mailbox expecting us to pay the taxes on their farm. The bank got confused by them and took the money out of our account. The bank talked with the farmers who sold us the house and they said they would drop a check off to us. They did not do this. They now won’t answer the banks phone calls. They got mad about the taxes and took a bulldozer and tried to remove that patch of woods to ruin my fiancés deer hunting. For the past several months our water bill had jumped way up and we couldn’t figure out why. I had started limiting the number of times I take bathes every week because of it. Then recently we find out that the farmers did not disclose the fact that there are water lines that run from our house to their pole barn. They don’t have their own water main. So this whole time they have been letting us foot the bill for the water that they use for their new farming operation. They are still using our water. We don’t fully know what to do and are working on finding and capping those lines. They threaten us not to step foot on their property. There was a snake infestation in our house they did not tell us about. We had to learn about this from a bunch of other people and deal with it. The basement flooded after we bought it. One threat they recently made was to turn us in because they say our septic isn’t up to code. We did not know that it wasn’t. Seems like they should have disclosed this when selling the house or whoever inspected the house for the loan should have caught this if it’s true. They run those silos at full blast spraying grain dust all over us. My kids are constantly sick from it. My oldest is weak and wobbly all the time from sinus infections and if she gets caught out in it and breaths it she will be caught her for the next several days. It sounds like a train battling a fleet of helicopters outside of my house and inside too. It causes my dog and all my ducks to cough too. The grain dust is so think it’s coming in through my windowsills, it piles up in my garage and on my car. It’s caked on my patio and landscaping. I can’t get it off my plants. Our pond has been wrecked and has turned a creamy green color. The fish won’t bite after t
Helen - 4-Nov-19 @ 7:30 AM
My property backs on to our local school fields separated by a tall conifer Bush. Unfortunately their side of gardening is lacking and a huge thorn bush has overgrown my entire hedge and has implanted itself all along my garden into the rest of my plants and bushes. I've tried to cut back as I can however its killing off my plants, it's too overgrown to tackle and its causing prick injuries no end to the family and my little boy who now cant play in the area. It's also horrendously unsightly and I cant even maintain my hedge anymore. Is this something I can get resolved?
Tara - 3-Nov-19 @ 3:47 PM
My next door neighbors dogs keep finding ways into my back garden and crapping all over and I can't let my kids play in the garden for fear of picking up or playing with the poo, I've told my neighbors about it and they say I should get new fence so other than paying for a fence is there anything I can do ? Can report them to anyone ?
J - 30-Oct-19 @ 9:51 AM
Ok so iv hand trubble from next door ever since i got my birds im being blamed for rats but rats have been coming in the loft for years as last people told me before i move next door have been winding my ducks up as well by playing a duck call and stressing my ducks out and thy have been saying thy goimg to poison my dogs and birds becoues of rats i think this is out of order and would like help thy all so want leave me alone i suffer witth anzity and thy know this thy have called enviament health on me 3 times now and niose conplants saying my birds make to much noise but thy dont thy hardly make any noise it seems there is a witch hunt again as other people have been report me as well im getting really upset and stressed as evey time i get a vist im sceard that i will losse my birds thy are every thing to me thy help with.my anzity
Lou lou - 30-Oct-19 @ 12:07 AM
We just some papers that someone filed a complaint against us for our dog barking.Our dog doesn't bark excessively.We live in a 11 story building with 20 apts on each floor, we also have a website where our building communicates openly about issues.Not once has this person stated there was a concern.We honestly wonder if this was just some prank, because there is definitely barking on our floor but it isn't our dog.With our building being so friendly wouldn't it make sense if our dog was barking to let us know?Why go to the extremes of reporting when you can easily just leave a anonymous note or knock on our door.I don't want/need to know who it was, but can a violation ticket be given to someone who files a report without merit, without trying to even make contact with the person their filing a complaint against?
Open - 29-Oct-19 @ 12:50 PM
Having problem with neighbour who has business he has a weed pile at bottom of garden nettles six foot high he keeps on threatening me with his builders also visits from community officers about poop in garden in front since putting it online fife council will not lift this as not my dog compass bins two at bottom of garden stinking full of rubbish bought rubbish from businesses up to here
Nick - 6-Oct-19 @ 8:57 PM
We have a neighbor that has no water no gas no electricity they steal water from the neighbors, run a generator 24/7 use the bathroom outside they have a house that is half way burnt dwn that reeks of oder tons of garbage everywhere we are fed up what can be done
Krazy k - 3-Oct-19 @ 1:49 PM
Bins left out on the pavement permanently . Dogs barking . Dog poop on pavement . Gardens full of garbage . Garbage spilling from bins left out permanently . Fast food vendors wrappers littering the streets . Dogs should be licensed and the councils given powers to act . Some places the council do the clean up and send a bill to the offenders . Overgrown hedges get the same . Brilliant !
Bill - 1-Oct-19 @ 7:40 AM
I have lived in a property for nearly 7 years and my boundary between next door is divided my a hedge. My neighbour has a tree which hadn't been cut this whole time. It's now over the boundary and into my garden and over 10 foot high. I've asked her to cut it over a dozen time and she still hasn't. Its affecting the light to my garden. What can I do??
Vik - 26-Sep-19 @ 5:38 PM
We moved into a brand new property 9 years ago and very soon after our neighbours moved in. They constantly banged up and down the stairs, slammed doors and played loud music on and off for hours. We ended up complaining to the council who went round and spoke to them. Things generally calmed down but they still have their moments!! We had a 4ft fence between us and them and we asked the council if we could put a 6ft fence up. We were given permission. A couple of years later a 12ft trampoline suddenly appeared, they put it right next to our fence. We now have no privacy and all the kids off the estate come round and bounce, scream and shout for hours on end on a daily basis. With where the trampoline is they can see straight into our kitchen window. They do very little gardening and do not pick up their dog poo regularly so it stinks and we get loads of flies. We have put up with comments, staring, glaring and just a general horrible atmosphere for years. It can be quite intimidating at times especially when the mother and her mates is doing it to my 12 year old child. It is an awful situation and we begun to just feel hatred towards them. This is our lovely home and cannot afford to move but nor should we have to. I wish they would just move away as there doesn't appear a lot we can do as the bullying is very low level and kind of goes undetected.
Hanj - 15-Sep-19 @ 7:32 PM
i am having major health issues and my neighbor across the hall from me comes in and out of our building slamming doors all hours no consideration for others. and i have spoken to her about this problem and now they added stomping down the hallway and everytime i have spoken to the landlord the slamming of doors has gotten worse my health cant handle this . i dont have the money to just move and its hard to move out when my body does not allow me to lift anything heavy. also these people have invited other people to live with them in a one bedroom apartment this woman has a boyfriend and two kids a boy and a girl and another woman living in that apartment and they are destroying the building its awful. everytime i talk with this woman she starts getting nasty she has scratched my car alot and she dumped soda on my car. i was nice to her when she moved in . She has turned nasty and im tired of dealing with her crap . i dont feel safe with her living across the hall from me . i feel like a prisoner in my apartment now cause i dont walk so good anymore . not shure what to do.
Chris - 13-Sep-19 @ 8:05 PM
Neighbors terrace house(rented)is full of weeds,some 6ft high,no gate rubbish bags,bins never emptied,gutter hanging off,kitchen window (inside)full of live flies.i can't sit in my yard because of the smell and the sight and thought of living with all the flies,God knows what inside looks like. Council been a few times and promised to sort it tried env health .no joy. What next.had this for years gate blew off 3 years ago.still on floor in main yard.bin full with rain water or I would have emptied it myself.
Parky - 13-Sep-19 @ 7:52 PM
New neighbours son bought back a lovely girl who thought it ok to throw her guts up near our back gate. What a surprise it's not been cleaned up disgusting little tramp. Do I phone their landlord as I've his number. I dare not go and talk to them because I will blow my top
Y - 8-Sep-19 @ 1:06 PM
My neighbours are conducting a medieval type witch hunt. They try to stop me living a life.The latest is I am forced off the pavement by a man with dogs. He uses obscene language.
Hannah - 1-Sep-19 @ 5:25 PM
House Forecourt opposite my house has high weeds and dumped fencing panel, plus theres been a sign of ratsit's totally unacceptable
PADDY - 24-Aug-19 @ 8:37 PM
My neighbor has painted his own white 'H' line across the road in front of his drive as he was having arguments daily with the ice cream van stopping there. Can I report this as graffiti on a public highway? I realise it is petty but he is a nasty person and harasses my family constantly. I see no reason why he should be allowed to break the law.
Herts85 - 24-Aug-19 @ 4:07 PM
What can I do? I have new neighbours and they cook vast pots of very disturbing smelling food outsideon portable gas stoves. This is bad enough and has ruined my outside time, but they also tip all the cooking liquids into the garden..the flies are getting really bad...maggot ridden bins in the alley. What can I do?
Rose - 17-Aug-19 @ 1:45 PM
On one side of my house the neighbour has 10 kids and the scream from 9am until 11pm everyday. The other side has a huge angry dog that barks so loud it's incredible everyday. Its relentless and its destroying my life. I just want peace.
Davey - 16-Aug-19 @ 9:16 PM
Could anyone tell me what is the legal distance next door neighbours wastebins should be away from my windows and doors
chrissi - 16-Aug-19 @ 7:35 PM
Our neighbour every week puts her rubbish infront of our drive way blocking one of our cars to not be able to enter or exit the property. Is this legal? We moved her rubbish infront of her house and she instantly moved it back infront of our property again. Do we have a leg to stand on?
Ja - 16-Aug-19 @ 7:47 AM
My neighbor has had a skip directly outside our house for over 4 months. It is full and smells! It's in our parking space as she asked to use it for her skip. She says that she has asked the skip company to collect it but she is on a waiting list for collection I spoke to them today and they told me that there is no list and they usually collect within a couple of days. 5-7 absolutely max. We are now sick of the sight and smell of it. Is this worthy of reporting to environmental health?
RoberT - 13-Aug-19 @ 8:04 PM
I have a neighbour who plays his music really loud at night and weekdays.I have been round three times at about 4/5pm to ask him to turn it down. I think he has special neds or mental health issues needs as he doesn't seem to ever remember my name and is always stinking of beer.He is always apologetic and amicable but it never seems to stop.Two other neighbours have also been round dial to complain.I know we can do noise diaries etc but would it help to speak to his landlord first and deal with it in a more less enforcement way?
Mamma - 11-Aug-19 @ 10:42 AM
When the landlord who owns the property next door had some repairs done to his porch he left off the gutters and drainage pipe.Because of this excessive water is draining down the hill to myside of the shared drive.I have added extra channel run off drainage to cope with all the extra water however with the increasing of flash storms its unable to cope always.Can he be made to re-instate the guttering because i fear the flooding is undermining my house some small holes have appeared close to the house he refuses to accept there is a problem.
bigal - 6-Aug-19 @ 11:18 PM
My neighbor has loadsof rubbishbags in the front garden it looks discusttingat the from of the house before long there will be rats out there .and the back garden is no better what can I do about it..as it's a private house . I do not speak to the neighbor. But also cannot be healthy for use orthe kids .
Joan - 6-Aug-19 @ 8:45 PM
Hi, I have a neighbour that leaves out kitchen foil and plates/bowls of food. They do not own pets. This is now attracting pests and vermin. I reported to council and all they did was close the report, no comment and nothing done. What more can I do?
Lduk - 5-Aug-19 @ 8:22 PM
I have a neighbor that sell cakes out of her house. Me and a couple of the other neighbors were sick because of these cakes. I brought the concern to her attention and she just told us not to buy them. I don’t want other people to experience what I experienced. How do I proceed?
Chris - 4-Aug-19 @ 9:52 AM
My neighbours are constantly using drug substances this has been going on for years my local council is aware of all that's going on but they have got worse now they are constantly using it on the balcony outside my front door I have bad breathing issues and I am on medication for this I was also admitted to hospital in February of this year because of my health I am being looked after by my doctor in the borough high street and guys hospital I'm so stressed and since losing my husband just over a year ago I feel very vulnerable and even victimized by these people all the time
Nanny - 30-Jul-19 @ 8:17 AM
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