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Smoke Nuisance and Dark Smoke

Smoke from bonfires and chimneys from neighbouring properties, can affect people's enjoyment of their homes and become a nuisance.

If you are concerned about smoke from nearby properties the Environmental Protection Team may be able to help you, however it is worth considering chatting with your neighbour and describing how the problem is affecting you and your family. You may find this difficult, but often people are just not aware that they are causing a problem and are often glad to reach a compromise.

Please always approach these matters carefully if you think your neighbour might react angrily to a complaint and in these cases you may wish to have a discussion with us first.

How do I make a complaint about smoke nuisance or dark smoke?

If you would like to make a complaint about smoke nuisance or dark smoke, we will need the following information from you:

  • Your name and address
  • Your telephone number
  • Email address (if you have one)
  • The address or site which is causing the smoke
  • When and for how long the problem is occurring
  • How the problem is affecting you (e.g. needing to close windows)
  • Anything you have done to try and solve the problem (e.g. speaking to your neighbour)

Mendip District Council do not take anonymous complaints. We will need the above details from you in order to pursue a complaint, and any details given will remain confidential and will not be disclosed by us without your permission.

What we can do:

  1. We will discuss the problem with you and agree the next step. At this stage advice and a chat may be enough, then we will close your case but keep the computer record.
  2. Normally the next step is to send a letter to the party you have made the complaint about. We will advise them a complaint has been made and we may need to send you log sheets to fill in to show when the problem occurs and, very importantly how it affects you. This often sorts the problem out and we hear no more and close the file.
  3. Once we have some evidence of the problem a qualified and experienced officer will decide on the next steps. Sometimes it is clear that we cannot take any more action and you will be informed of that and you may be given information on how to take your own private action.
  4. If the evidence suggests that we can investigate further, we may visit you. If the problem persists and our officers observations indicate the likelihood of a problem severe enough for formal action a legal notice may be served to assist in achieving a remedy.  We will endeavour to keep you informed throughout the process to ensure that you have a good understanding of how our investigation is proceeding.

How to contact us

You can contact us on any of the below methods or by completing the form at the bottom of this page:

Telephone: 0300 303 8588


Post: Environmental Health, Mendip District Council, Cannards Grave Road, Shepton Mallet, BA4 5BT


Last modified: 29 June 2018