Rockers apologise for upsetting locals

MIDDLE-aged rockers accused of shattering the weekend tranquillity of a picture postcard Suffolk village have apologised for causing any upset - and vowed to find somewhere else to practice.

Will Clarke

MIDDLE-aged rockers accused of shattering the weekend tranquillity of a picture postcard Suffolk village have apologised for causing any upset - and vowed to find somewhere else to practice.

Andy Garvin, 44, of the band Mid Life Crisis, said they had no idea there was problem surrounding practice sessions at the Royal British Legion Club in historic Lavenham, near Sudbury.

But he has since apologised to neighbours, including the village post office, whose owners threatened to shut up shop unless the rehearsals were held somewhere else.

Mr Garvin, from Sudbury, a three-time grandfather who heads the five piece ensemble, said they were only told of the problems when a Babergh District Council environmental health officer contacted them.

“We've only been going for nine months,” he said. “We decided to practice at the legion club to give them support with a bit of money back in August.

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“There was a complaint so we turned down the music and closed the windows. We didn't hear any more about it so we thought that was that.

“Only when the environmental health officer came round did we realise how serious things had become.

“We are not 21-year-olds thrashing out rock tunes. If we had known it was a serious issue was we would have stopped sooner.

“We are really sorry, we don't want people to think we are the kind of people to play loud music and we are now looking for somewhere else to rehearse.”

The average age of the various members of the band, which is considering changing its name to Swimming with Sharks, is 40. It plays tunes as varied as Alice Cooper rock covers and reggae.

Postmistress Beverly Hensby said she was glad to draw a line under the row and accepted the band's apology.

“We are sad it came to this,” she said. “We never had any problem with the music style or the quality of the music we just wanted them to change the times of the rehearsals - we just want peace and quiet on a Sunday afternoon.”

The Royal British Legion declined to comment on the band's apology.

However, Daphne Fayers, president of the Lavenham club said last week: “This issue is done and dusted”.

A Babergh spokesman said an officer had found the room at the club was unsuitable and had asked the band to move but no sound abatement notice had been served.