It’s been a busy week of noise surveys, which has taken us as far afield as Haverhill, Hemel Hempstead, Huddersfield and…Wolverhampton. It nearly worked out that a further job was in Harrogate, which would have been pleasing just for the alliteration!
Huddersfield was helping to discharge a planning application for a factory extension relatively close to residential properties. Fairly routine, but also very interesting because some of the felts and foams being made in the factory look like they would make excellent acoustic absorption. I’d never really thought about the process of making these materials before so to watch the carding, folding, and baking of the materials was fascinating – as it was to hear it! It was also lovely to see equipment up to 70 years old still doing its job, and looking like it would keep going forever.
In Hemel, we are involved in an urban regeneration scheme which will see a mixture of residential, commercial and retail properties on what is currently an industrial site. The noise survey is the first part of a larger piece of work which includes noise modelling of the full site, predictions relating to noise transfer, and considering the impact of noise from the nearby M1 and trunk roads on the new residential properties.
Wolverhampton is a similar scheme on a smaller scale (at the moment) – the redevelopment of the old Sunbeam Factory for housing. This is part of the client’s ambition to regenerate the whole area, and we are excited to see such an iconic building being brought back into life. It feels like a privilege to help in a small way, but also to be able to see inside these old buildings and learn a little of their history before they are changed forever.
And finally, Haverhill – a place that I had never heard of until last summer, but where I have now been twice! This time looking at planning for a new industrial process on the existing industrial site, which meant identifying the nearest noise sensitive properties at some distance, but also making predictions of noise breakout through the building fabric for the new processes. This involves understanding how the building will actually be constructed, advising on ventilation routes, and also possibly advising on upgrades to the proposed building fabric to contain noise.
If you see me out and about, it’s usually with microphone in hand. But a noise survey is only really the start of a project; the advice and problem solving comes later once we have gathered the information. If you want to know more about how we could help you solve a noise or acoustic problem, give us a call.