Council 'will not silence church bells'

ENVIRONMENTAL health officers said last night they will not be taking any action in the ongoing row over church bell ringing in Aldeburgh.

Russell Claydon

ENVIRONMENTAL health officers said last night they will not be taking any action in the ongoing row over church bell ringing in Aldeburgh.

Suffolk Coastal District Council received a call from a disgruntled resident last November complaining about the Sunday peals, which occur at St Peter and St Paul's church for three hours once a month in the summer, except in August.

Since then a petition has circulated through the town to silence the bells ringing on Sundays in June and July so they can enjoy some peace and quiet in their gardens.


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Officers from the council's environmental protection team said they have met with the church's vicar, the Rev Nigel Hartley, over the furore and hoped a compromise could be found, but will not be enforcing anything themselves.

Andrew Nunn, the council's cabinet member for the green environment, said: “Our environmental protection team has concluded that there is no reason on noise nuisance grounds to take any action to restrict the number of occasions that the bells are currently rung at Aldeburgh.

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“Our considered view is that there are no grounds for us to intervene at present and we had hoped that a compromise could by now have been found between both sides.

“I would still encourage the Parochial Church Council (PCC) to see if they can somehow broker a solution to this increasingly discordant debate about what is a local issue among long-standing Aldeburgh residents that has been blown up into a national media circus.”

It is understood that the PCC will meet tomorrow to discuss the issue of the bells.

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