Quietly confident: Local Authorities and industry showcase best practice and engineering excellence at the ‘Noise Oscars’
Brighton, 15th November, 2012 – Local Authorities and industry demonstrated their innovative side last night at the 12th annual John Connell Awards, dubbed the ‘Noise Oscars’.
The awards – held by the Noise Abatement Society and kindly sponsored by Brigade Electronics, the European Environment Agency, the Freight Transport Association, the Institute of Acoustics and Rockwool UK – are named in honour of the Society’s founder, John Connell OBE, who successfully lobbied the Noise Abatement Act through Parliament in 1960 when noise became a statutory nuisance for the first time in the UK.
The awards were hosted at the House of Commons by Mike Weatherly MP for Hove and Portslade on Tuesday 6th November on behalf of the Noise Abatement Society (NAS) Trustees. They are designed to recognise and promote innovative ideas and initiatives from Local Authorities that have made a positive impact on the reduction of excessive noise in the community, helping to improve the aural environment.
Gloria Elliott, chief executive of the Noise Abatement Society, said:
“We congratulate the winners and finalists of the John Connell awards who all demonstrated the successful creation and implementation of practical solutions. These solutions, together with the resulting partnerships that evolved have significantly helped to reduce noise pollution, enabling us all to benefit from a more harmonious environment.”
Seventeen awards across 9 categories were presented. They were:
1. The Quiet Mark Award of Distinction, presented by Mike Weatherley MP for Hove and Portslade – Quiet Mark™, a trading arm of the Noise Abatement Society, is an exciting programme that captures the imagination of consumers and manufacturers alike. With its distinctive purple mark and environmental message it provides a global showcase for quiet technology that recognises companies who promote the values of eco-quiet on a global scale and who pioneer innovation.
Winner: zero2infinity bloon
For quiet, safe near-space tourism promoting a vision of the future using the most advanced near space technology high altitude balloons, with no other power than the natural lift provided by helium for quiet space flights and zero-environmental impact flying solutions, which will make space flight a possibility for everyone.
2. The John Connell Local Authority Award – sponsored by Rockwool, and presented by Lord de Mauley of Defra and Thomas Heldgaard, Managing Director of Rockwool UK – this award recognises services and campaigns that are shining examples of co-operation and creative solutions to solving noise problems in the community.
Highly Commended: Wrexham County Borough Council
In response to the County’s largest single domestic noise complaint category accounting for 42% of reports received, Wrexham Council produced an inter-departmental and multi-agency, creative and proactive anti dog barking initiative.
Highly Commended: Elmbridge City Council
For its engaging and interactive Online Noise Toolkit – empowering local residents and businesses to deal with noise 24/7 through pro-active on-line reporting. Also for its voluntary ‘Noise Code for Licensed Premises’ to compliment and assist the EHPs in their service to the community.
Winner: Liverpool City Council
For it multi-agency approach in dealing with night-noise issues through the establishment of a City Centre Licensed Premises Coordinator and information database to manage planning and licensing compliance issues, which resulted in increased response times to identify infractions. This led to a 51% decrease in complaints about city-centre clubs and bars.
3 – The John Connell Innovation Award, presented by Mike Weatherley MP for Hove and Portslade – which encourages the development of new schemes to resolve noise pollution and recognises a pioneering approach that addresses this issue from a unique standpoint.
Winner: Brighton and Hove City Council
For their far-sighted and proactive commitment to developing an applied holistic Soundscape approach to city-wide planning- for anti-social night noise intervention, to new and existing planning issues, traffic noise solutions, and for educational opportunities; and for their commitment to a multi-agency knowledge sharing on this pioneering approach for the benefit of local environment.
4 – The Enterprise in Quiet Transport Award, sponsored by The Freight Transport Association, and presented by Mike Weatherley MP for Hove and Portslade and Natalie Chapman, Head of Policy for London, FTA – recognises companies who go above and beyond accepted standards to reduce noise for the public benefit and forge a path for others to follow.
Winner: F M Conway
FM Conway for their long term commitment to sustainability in every aspect of their business – to secure the widest possible economic, environmental and social benefits – including a comprehensive commitment to reducing their community noise pollution impact through customized innovative vehicle enhancements, site specific noise reduction interventions, operational procedures and staff training.
5 – The John Connell Silent Approach Award, sponsored by Brigade Electronics and presented by Sir Bob Russell MP for Colchester and Chris Hanson-Abbott, Chairman of Brigade Electronics – recognises significant products and services which reduce noise for the benefit of the community whilst enhancing the environment.
Highly Commended: Veolia Environmental Services
For a company whose initiatives in the workplace, marketplace and community help to transform attitudes towards waste, who turn waste into a resource, and who has a commitment to provide exceptional lower noise operations where necessary, including vehicles, equipment and staff training for use in sensitive areas.
Winner: Airbus for the A380: Airbus is a company which continually monitors the environmental impact of its manufacturing processes, as well as products, throughout the duration of service life. Working with suppliers to reduce engine emissions – including noise – is a priority. The company has worked hand-in-hand with engine manufacturers on low-noise designs, acoustic treatment and low engine noise technologies, resulting in a remarkably quiet aircraft, which delivers unprecedented certified noise levels to the most stringent ICAO Chapter 4 standard, and satisfies the noise requirements of international airports.
6 – The European Soundscape Award, sponsored by the European Environment Agency and presented by Colin Nugent, Project Manager for Noise, of the EEA raises awareness of the health impacts of noise pollution and recognises initiatives that help reduce excessive noise to improve the soundscape.
Highly Commended: NGO OKOKRATT for its multi-faceted national Noise Education initiative spanning a network of 214 educational institutions consisting of 30,000 children aged 3-18, equipping and inspiring a generation how to mitigate noise pollution and care for the soundscape.
Winner: TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY OF BERLIN for its “Nauener Platz: Remodelling for the Young and the Elderly.” A landmark project which utilised a collaborative approach between local people, acousticians and urban designers to define the redevelopment of a multi-use public open space with consideration for The Soundscape as a central outcome.
7 – The John Connell Technology Award, sponsored by the Institute of Acoustics and presented by Stephen Turner, Head of Technical & Evidence Team for Noise & Nuisance at Defra, recognises the crucial role that industry plays in reducing noise pollution and thereby improving the environment.
Highly Commended: Cargotec – for its Front Mounted Forklift – virtually silent – delivery solution for palletised goods, construction material and loads up to 2000KG – utilising the latest electric drive and control technology.
Winner: Bruel & Kjaer’s Noise Sentinel – a complete end to end service to help industry manage its impact in the community. Unlike current noise monitoring systems Noise Sentinel communicates noise compliance in real time, alerts operators before a breach occurs and enables them to take immediate action to reduce noise and ensure compliance.
8 – The John Connell Special Commendation Award, presented by Mike Weatherley MP for Hove – recognises unsung public sector heroes who have worked consistently and tirelessly, often beyond the call of duty, to achieve the goal of a quieter, healthier and safer environment
Winner: Sheffield City Council - for their INTEGRATED NIGHT NOISE SERVICE with South Yorkshire Police and Sheffield Homes. This unique partnership tackles noise nuisance and low level Anti Social Behaviour demonstrating year on year improvements since its inception in 2009 – seeing complaints resolution plummet from 10 weeks to 2 hours – resulting in dramatic benefits for the local community and high levels of customer satisfaction.
Winner: Ian Wainwright, Road Freight Programme Manager at Transport for London (TfL) – for his relentless commitment to excellence and innovation towards sustainable transport and his exemplary leadership, management and development of the LONDON 2012 Road Freight TRANSPORT STRATEGY – which helped to make London 2012 so successful.
9 – The John Connell Lifetime Achievement Awards, presented by Daniel Instone Head of Atmosphere and Local Environment Programme at Defra – recognises those who have made outstanding contributions to raising the profile of noise pollution as a critical environmental issue and worked tirelessly, over the course of their careers to effect solutions for the public benefit.
Winner: Jill Phillips – recently retired from Wandsworth Borough Council – a Chartered Environmental Health Practitioner who, over the course of a long and varied career has relentlessly championed the importance of the frontline role Environmental Health Practitioners play in protecting local communities and personally ensured the protection of many through her work.
Winner: Dr Geoff Leventhall – has a long and distinguished career, encompassing 22 years teaching at Chelsea College, the publication of numerous scientific papers; involvement in editing books and journals; and organising conferences, including a successful series on low frequency noise and vibration, of which he is the recognized global expert. He received the Institute of Acoustics Tyndall Medal in 1978; was its President from 1984 to 86; and the recipient of its R W B Stephens Medal in 2001 as well as many other honours.
Winner: Robert Reed of Westminster City Council – who started his career in 1972 as a Student Environmental Health Officer, his trademark sensibility and considered approach has seen him intercept countless noise problems whilst proposals for new developments were at Planning stage. He was part of Westminster City Council’s Environmental Science Team which produced an award winning noise strategy recognised by the Royal Town Planning Institute; and has been pivotal in Westminster’s response to a number of initiatives including noise mitigation programmes in Soho, the Theatre District, Covent Garden; and during London 2012 – all whilst helping to manage a unique team dealing with up to 20,000 noise complaints a year.
Notes to editors
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About Noise Abatement Society
The objective of the Noise Abatement Society, a national Charity in the UK, is to raise awareness of noise and noise-related pollutants (for example, light disturbance and air pollution). Our work helps to find solutions and relieve the physical and mental distress and ill health which noise and related pollutants cause and which profoundly affect public health, productivity and the quality of all life. The Society operates a free advice helpline for those people that are suffering from noise nuisance, and don’t know where to turn to find a solution to the problem.
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