Suburban Scout Hall Dispute Over Noise and Light Disturbance

Published January 28, 2024

In Blackburn South, a once peaceful neighborhood is now disrupted by the sounds and lights of a scout hall said to be operating as a performing arts center without proper authorization. Local families report high volumes of music causing children to wear earmuffs to bed, and bright lights pouring into their homes during performances.

Residents Wrestle with Noise Pollution

The scout hall nearby has reportedly been remodeled into a facility that frequently hosts musical productions, such as the rock musical We Will Rock You, stretching late into the nights and beginning early on weekends. Tim Denning, a resident living close to the venue, outlines how the peace once enjoyed has been replaced by amplified disturbances.

Many have invested in double-glazing windows, while others have expressed distress over their children's inability to sleep without the aid of earmuffs.

A Community Seeks Resolution

Denning and others in the community have taken steps to seek intervention from local authorities and have called the police, but to little avail. Their efforts have escalated to an administrative tribunal seeking compliance with environmental guidelines, proper permits, and regulation of operating hours.

While residents hold no grievance toward traditional scout activities, they urge that the use of the facility should adhere to reasonable constraints to ensure neighborhood tranquility. They hope for constructive dialogue with Scouts Victoria, who owns the property, and the implementation of soundproofing measures should they be needed.

Responses from Authorities and Scouts Victoria

A local council representative highlighted the historical usage of the scout hall, clarifying the lack of permits for it as a performing arts center. With the issue set for an upcoming tribunal hearing, further comments were withheld. On the other hand, a Scouts Victoria executive stressed the organization's awareness and continued efforts to mitigate the impact of their activities on residents.

The matter awaits further examination and action at a VCAT hearing planned for later in the year.

controversy, residents, disruption