Special needs school proposed

A planning application has been submitted to build a school for 180 special needs children. The site is adjacent to my back garden, and I am concerned regarding the noise levels which will be generated. Have you any experience of this?

Noise can be a particularly problematic where sounds are sudden, loud and distressing. I would suggest that you first try to find out more about the nature of the school and the range of needs that the pupils attending will have. Distance from your property will be a factor as well as the arrangement of the site and buildings. It may be that noise on site can be minimised partly by design and partly by post-build management. So a negative impact isn’t necessarily a certainty. Use of the garden can very often become a problem (as it often does with children’s nurseries that are placed in unsuitable locations). The developers may be able to reassure you but raise the issues through the planning and environmental health departments now.

These issues can be difficult to measure acoustically as they tend to be sporadic (colleagues involved in monitoring have counted the peaks in sound and noted the number and nature of moans/screams in some circumstances).