Give and take call on Picton noise

ANGELA CROMPTON
Last updated 08:24 06/05/2014
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TOO LOUD: Noise complaints have forced a popular live music venue to tone down some of their live acts.

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Downtown Picton can remain a music base for all ages to enjoy if noise levels are better managed, says a Marlborough District councillor.

David Oddie from Waikawa was responding to a report that noise control officers contracted by the council were telling cafe owners that music in their venues was too loud.

"I'm a supporter of music in Picton and around the foreshore, downtown area," Oddie said. "But people in [nearby] apartments are entitled to their quiet existence."

There were three apartment blocks on the Picton foreshore, and it was up to neighbouring cafe proprietors to manage the volumes of music played on their premises, he said. "With a little bit of forethought and control, they can both co-exist."

Oddie said disruptive noise levels were identified by high decibel readings, but Wellington St hotel-restaurant owner Juliearna Kavanagh said the noise control officers that turned up to her venue, Escape to Picton, never had meters for a reading to be taken.

Marlborough District Council environmental health officer Gina Ferguson said noise control contractors responded to all noise complaints. Excessive noise could be any other noise under human control that interfered with a person's peace, comfort and convenience. The only way to determine that was by sending a noise control officer to a site to investigate, she said.

Under the Marlborough Sounds Resource Management Plan higher decibel levels were permitted in Picton's central business district than in its residential zones. But the rights of people living or staying overnight in the CBD had to be remembered, Ferguson said.

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