Manchester music venue in court again in ongoing noise dispute

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Night & Day Café in the Northern Quarter has been taken to Manchester Magistrates’ Court for a three-day hearing in a case that began in November 2021.

Manchester City Council served the venue a Noise Abatement Notice more than two years ago after a complaint from residents living in nearby flats.

The business appealed the notice claiming that its survival is at stake if it loses in court.

Several hearings have taken place so far but the case has repeatedly been adjourned and talks held at the town hall have ended with no agreement being reached between the two parties.

The Council says it remains committed to settling the case agreeably.

“Since our last appearance in court the Council has been working to reach an agreement with the venue on sound levels, which both parties can agree on, in an attempt to settle this case amicably,” said a Council spokesperson, according to the Manchester Evening News.

“Testing was carried out over the autumn of 2023 as well as a follow up in the winter in an attempt to determine a level which satisfies the Council that the noise nuisance has been abated, whilst allowing the venue to continue to provide a vibrant live and pre-recorded music experience for those attending.

“We remain entirely committed to this goal, and while we cannot go into further detail ahead of our next court appearance, we remain hopeful for a positive resolution. The city's music venues are an important part of the fabric of the city, and play a vital role in the night-time economy and in creating opportunities for new artists.”

Night & Day Café is insistent that it is not to blame for the disturbance and has instead pointed towards housing developers.

“We maintain the source of the problem is that when the adjoining building was converted from warehouse to flats, no consideration was given to the pre-existing live music venue,” it said in a

“Attenuation of ‘noise’ was and still is a condition of the planning consent.”

The case exists because of the complaint from a resident who purchased an adjoining flat during a COVID-19-related lockdown.

However, this person has since moved out 18 months ago and the venue has not received any further noise complaints, it claims.