Scotland’s daftest neighbour disputes revealed


SCOTLAND’S daftest neighbour disputes have been revealed – including washing line sabotage, cars smeared with food and “staring”.

The arguments were revealed following a Freedom of Information request submitted to all councils across the country.

They reveal thousands of complaints were logged by council officials, most of them concerning well-known issues such as loud music, barking dogs and footballs in gardens.

But the documents also show that officials’ precious time was consumed by numerous petty, baffling and downright bizarre complaints.

Thousands of neighbour complaints were logged by councils
Thousands of neighbour complaints were logged by councils

One irritated Midlothian homeowner was so fed up with their neighbour’s snoring that they submitted a complaint for “antisocial noise”. Documents show the alleged snorer refused to take part in mediation.

Staff at the same council dealt in 2013 with a complaint about “parking, staring and behaviour of children”. The issue was resolved when one neighbour moved house.

The following year, Midlothian officials managed to resolve an “ongoing/historical dispute” about a neighbour who “refused to close gate”.

Aberdeenshire Council’s mediation team spent time in 2015 investigating an allegation that a neighbour’s cat was “urinating in the stairs” and a moan about “neighbour’s pigeons fouling outside house”.

In June last year, the council was told by one homeowner that their neighbour “cut washing lines when washing was hung up on the wrong day”.

A resident also complained that a “neighbour had covered car with food on two separate occasions”.

Yet another complainer thought that the “noise from shower” in a neighbouring property was bad enough to warrant an official complaint.

South Ayrshire received one complaint which was classed as “gossip”.

In East Lothian, noise disputes topped the list with 41 complaints made in 2015, with boundary disputes coming in second at 19.

And in North Lanarkshire, the number of “unreasonable behaviour” complaints has rocketed from just one in 2014-15 to 40 the following year.

Edinburgh Council were only able to provide information dating back to September 2015, when they set up their own mediation team.

Documents show that since then, they have received a total of 15 referrals, 14 of which were based on general living noise issues including “music being played too loudly” and “children running around”.

Dundee Council’s mediation service dealt with 53 noise disputes in 2014, along with 3 harassment complaints and one drug related disturbance.

Grumbling neighbours in Aberdeen were referred to an external mediation service, Sacro, who dealt with 76 complaints last year, and 128 disputes in 2014.

Glasgow Council claimed that they “did not hold the information” when asked about mediation services and complaints.