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DEMOLITION AND CONSTRUCTION ACOUSTICS

The most noticeable part of the majority of planning applications in terms of noise and vibration emissions to the wider environment will be the construction phase.  Works on site, including sites where demolition, remediation, ground treatment and other related civil engineering works are being carried out, can cause significant disruption to neighbouring sensitive receptors. 

Construction noise can also be associated with open sites, where significant outdoor excavations, levelling or deposition of material is taking place.  A typical open site would be a quarry or other mineral extraction site, waste disposal site or area of long-term construction. 

What guidance and legislation is available for addressing construction noise?

BS5228: 2009 Code of practice for noise and vibration control on construction and open sites

Guidance relating to the prediction, calculation and assessment of noise and vibration emissions from construction and open sites is given in BS5228 2009 Code of practice for noise and vibration control on construction and open sites, as updated in 2014.  The standard also gives basic methods of noise control on such sites and noise levels from typical construction plant.

Control of Pollution Act 1974 Section 60 ‘Control of noise on construction sites’ gives local authorities the ability to serve noise abatement notices on sites considered to be causing a noise pollution issue.  Section 61 ‘Prior consent for work on construction sites’ allows site operators to gain prior consent to do works that could result in temporary pollution issues.  Such agreements often include acceptable noise levels, plant lists, operating hours, working methods, acoustic mitigation and a compliance monitoring regime.

Acoustics and air qualityKey features

  • Advice on meeting local authority requirements
  • Assistance in the development of CEMP

Acoustics and air qualityDid you know

It is a popular misconception that trees offer acoustic protection: in reality, there would need to be a 100m thick forest for any acoustic reduction to be provided.

PPG Minerals

In the UK, guidance relating to the assessment of noise emissions from the extraction of minerals is given in the Government’s Minerals Guidance, which replaces Minerals Policy Statement 2, 2005.

How can Miller Goodall help?

Miller Goodall can provide professional input at all stages of the development, from the planning stage through to compliance monitoring during works:

Sound monitoring to determine baseline ambient sound levels in the area around the site.  Ambient sound levels are used to determine the threshold of potential significance at residential dwellings due to future construction noise.

Computer noise modelling using BS5228 calculations to predict noise levels from construction activities on the site, at the site boundary or at nearby sensitive receptors.

Impact assessment of the proposed activities on the site at the planning stage, to determine the likelihood of potential significant effects due to construction noise at nearby sensitive receptors. 

Section 61 prior consent applications through liaison with the local planning authority to determine acceptable scope of works and operating times for short term, potentially antisocial, construction works, including identification of receptors eligible for noise insulation or other forms of management mitigation.

Noise Management Plans to detail the site’s noise mitigation procedures in terms of operating times, plant locations, temporary barriers and management of noise complaints and monitoring regimes.

Construction noise and vibration monitoring to ensure compliance with criteria set out by the local planning authority or other third party receptor.


This was the second time I have used Miller Goodall because they provide a friendly and efficient service.

Martin Greaves
Martin Greaves Proprietor, SM Building Services

Prompt return of quotes, competitive pricing, attended site when required, immediate issue of sound test reports following testing, good advice, assistance in obtaining historic reports when we lost them.

Michael Stobbs
Michael Stobbs Quantity Surveyor, Barnfield Construction Ltd


Bringing Miller Goodall into your project as environmental consultants means you can be certain that you are meeting the required standards of environmental best practice. Talk to us: info@millergoodall.co.uk

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