With the weather improving, many of us will be heading out into our gardens. But do you find that noisy neighbours or pesky animals ruin it for you?
Ah, the spring! The first flowers are open and the weather is mild enough to tempt us into the garden.
And there’s nothing better than sitting in your garden on a sunny afternoon, cool drink in hand, listening to the birds singing… or the neighbours cutting through a huge pile of logs with a chainsaw… or dogs incessantly yapping.
In February we asked over a thousand Which? members which noises they loved and which bothered them in the garden. The results really got us talking.
Of the people who told us they’d been bothered by noise in their garden, almost two fifths had been bothered by a dog or dogs barking. Road and traffic noise were a big irritant too along with neighbours’ garden parties.
A fifth who’d been bothered by noise found the sound of someone mowing the lawn irritating. But a lot of people also said they found the same sound restful.
Bird song was reported as the most restful sound – but not seagulls, cockerels, rooks or wood pigeons.
As for me, I don’t mind the gentle tinkle of a wind-chime, but my colleague describes her neighbour’s wind chime as ‘infuriating tuneless dissonant clanging’.
But cats fighting, foxes yelping and in one case, cannon fire from a medieval festival, all seem to jangle our nerves.
Combatting unwelcome noise
Some noise you can never get rid of, but can fade into the background once you’re used to it, like traffic. Other noise can be dealt with after a quiet word with the neighbours.
So what do you do to combat unwelcome noise in your garden? Do you retaliate or retreat inside? What noises are the most irritating for you, and which do you find restful?