Peter, who lives in the golden triangle area of Norwich, an area very popular with students, spoke of the troubles of living next door to students.
‘I have lived in the area for 17 years but up until a couple of years ago, I had never had a problem. The house next door was turned into student housing and since then there have been non-stop issues. The students next door play loud music, come home shouting and laughing at all hours of the night and smoke weed in the garden we share.’
The golden triangle area is home to both students and families, all terraced together in close proximity; sometimes frictions between neighbours are inevitable, regardless of whether they are students or not, but are students really a ‘nightmare’ to live next to?
Ellen Hawksworth, third year UEA student who has lived in the golden triangle area for two years, disagrees. ‘As a student, I don’t agree that all students are rowdy; it is such a blanket statement. However, I would say that students can get excited, and forget the consequences of their actions (e.g. time of night, the day of the week).’
Hawksworth is no stranger to rowdy neighbours, after moving to a new house in her third year of university, she has been woken up at all times of the night by the students living next door.
‘They are very loud when returning from a night out, playing music, screaming and just being inconsiderate to the point where we were having broken sleep for weeks at a time when they were going out frequently.’
However, while reluctant at first, Hawksworth and her other housemates informed the letting agent after trying numerous times themselves to stop their rowdy neighbours.
‘For now, informing the letting agents has done the trick, but if not there are other avenues we can take.’
Peter went straight to the Norwich City Council who took the issue to the university; the students were threatened with expulsion if they were unable to quell their rowdy behaviour.
Lucy, Peter’s wife, said that ‘living next to students is not always ideal but if they are able to let us know in advance of parties or behaviour that might be disturbing, especially for the children at night, then we wouldn’t mind so much; but it’s the not knowing whether we or the kids are going to get a good night’s sleep that causes us so much stress.’
While students might not always be the nightmarish neighbours that Peter described, having rowdy neighbours can be really disturbing to an individual’s or family’s quality of life. So next time, if you are a rowdy neighbour, try to be more mindful.