You could be committing a crime and see yourself slapped with a hefty fine simply by crying or arguing in your own home due to strict council rules.
This is due to Community Protection Notices (CPNs), which are issued by local councils to prevent residents from disrupting their neighbours’ everyday life.
The rules were introduced by Prime Minister Theresa May when she was Home Secretary in 2014 and can be given to anyone above the age of 16.
If you do anything which is deemed to be disruptive to your neighbours, such as crying loudly or arguing, your local council could slap you with a notice which bans you from continuing.
A Freedom of Information request by The Sun has found that in Newcastle-Under-Lyme, residents are forbidden from crying, arguing or banging loudly in their own home.
The council in the area served one resident a notice to “not to create any wailing, jabbering, crying and hammering on the wall type noises” in December 2015 after a neighbour complained.
It said that the noises should not be “capable of being heard outside of any property that x [the neighbour] may reside at any time of the day and night”.
The council added that it hasn’t since had any reports of the notice being breached, and said that it hasn’t issued any fines so far.
Yet if individuals are served a CPN and fail to comply, they face an on-the-spot fine of £100 or a fine of up to £2,500 if prosecuted.
Meanwhile, businesses can be fined up to a whopping £20,000.
The Sun contacted the Newcastle Under Lyme Borough Council for a comment.
All you need to know about CPNs
IF you’re worried about being slapped with a fine, here’s all you need to know about CPNs, according to charity Shelter.
A CPN can be issued when the behaviour is:
- having a “detrimental effect” on the quality of life of those in the locality
- persistent or continuing in nature
There is no restriction on the type of behaviour a CPN can deal with, for example it can deal with noise nuisance, rubbish in gardens and littering.
Before issuing a CPN, the issuing body should give a written warning setting out that if the antisocial behaviour continues a CPN will be issued.
The amount of time allowed between the written warning and the issuing of the CPN is determined on a case-by-case basis.
In some cases it could be minutes, for example when someone persists with playing loud music in a park. The Sun