Page 1. Antisocial Behaviour and Neighbour Disputes
Page 2. Car Security – Suggested Precautions
Page 3. Nuisance Calls – How to stop them
Page 4. Home Security – While away on holiday

Antisocial Behaviour and Neighbour Disputes

Incidents of Antisocial Behaviour (ASB) have increased significantly over the last few years with police, councils and housing associations all recording record numbers of ASB incidents. ASB is a serious issue and causes real harm to people, often resulting in sleepless nights, misery, anxiety and a feeling of despair, but what exactly is classed as ASB and what is in fact a neighbour dispute?

ASB can cover a wide range of behaviours that can be categorised under the following three main headings.

Personal, where a specific individual or group such as the elderly or disabled people are targeted, verbal abuse, household disputes which include shouting, swearing and fighting.

Nuisance, when a person causes trouble, annoyance or suffering to a community, including loud music, banging, DIY at unsocial hours, loud parties and frequent visitors at unsocial hours

Environmental, where a person’s actions affect the wider environment, such as public spaces or buildings including dumping rubbish, animal nuisance, including dog fouling and barking, vandalism, property damage and graffiti, antisocial drinking, driving in an inconsiderate or careless way.

Not all ASB is a crime, often issues which are causing a problem are in fact classed as a neighbour dispute, where the person causing the problem is not doing so intentionally and the problem is not persistent or repeated intentionally and no serious harm is caused. It is only when the problems are deliberate, persistent and pose a risk to someone are they classed as ASB.

If you feel that you are a victim of ASB, then it is very important to keep a continuous daily record of the incidents over a two week period and include the date and time of the incidents and how they affected you. This will help build a pattern of the nuisance over time and help in investigating the incidents should you decide to take formal action. If the ASB incidents are serious, a criminal activity or a risk to someone’s safety, then report it to the police and then if you know the neighbour is renting and you know who from, speak to the council, private landlord or the housing association.

If you are having an ongoing dispute with your neighbour over noise issues such as loud music, parties and dogs barking, you can report these incidents to the council by searching for ‘Noise Pollution’ at and complete the online reporting form, or you can provide the pollution team with details of the dispute at, If the problem involves boundary walls, fences, trees or hedges then contact Croydon Citizens Advice (0800 144 88 48) or seek independent legal advice. If you are unsure who to report the incidents to, help and advice can be found at

Invariably, disputes between neighbours are often the result of a difference in life style and very often these types of neighbour disputes can be resolved peacefully by talking to the neighbour concerned as they may not be aware they are causing a problem and hopefully able to come to an acceptable compromise, such as agreeing a time in the evening to stop diy work or not play loud music after a certain time.

If you don’t feel comfortable about approaching a neighbour, consider writing a note explaining the problem and the effect it is having. Just remember, be respectful, don’t be abusive, stick to the facts and hopefully an amicable solution can be found. If a solution cannot be agreed, you could consider the free Croydon Community Mediation Service which is an independent non-profit making organisation supported by Croydon Council. They can help resolve problems between neighbours such as noise, boundaries, repairs, parking, animals and children. Further information can be found on their website or you can contact them on 020 8686 6084.

Although noise disturbance is by far the most commonly reported antisocial behaviour, we must accept there will always be a certain amount of noise in our daily lives and try and be reasonably tolerant to peoples different life styles. However, excessive and frequent noise at unreasonable times can be a nuisance and cause a disturbance. As a result it is important that we are reasonably considerate and mindful of the effect our own activities can have on our neighbours.