Rugby club can use tannoy for announcements

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Scarborough Rugby Club can use a public address system to make announcements during matches and sporting festivals – but planners ruled out its use for jingles and music.

The decision was taken by members of Scarborough Council’s Planning Committee this afternoon in front of a packed public gallery.

The planning application had proposed to use tannoys for public announcements during home games on pitch one – up to a maximum of 21 games – and on pitches two to five during tournaments and festivals – probably around four times a year and lasting up to two days each.

Nick Read, from the council’s Planning Department, said the application was to vary a condition which was originally imposed when planning permission was first granted.

He said that planning officers initially had concerns about sound levels on the proposal for tournaments and festivals. “The sound levels could be higher than the World Health Organisation guidelines. We did have serious concerns on that.

“In response the application has been modified and noise levels would now fall below the World Health Organisation threshold.”

Members were told that the neighbours would experience noise levels at a maximum level of 50dB – the equivalent of normal conversation.

Club spokesman Simon Ward said they had made significant changes to the application with the subsequent reduction in noise levels and there were the same number of objection to the plan, compared with a previous application, but support had risen considerably. “The club has considered the points put forward by objectors.”

A spokeswoman for those opposed to the application told members that the sound system would present a “statutory nuisance” when a British Standard – which experts said was used to assess industrial noise – was applied.

She added that the club was not a “considerate neighbour” and added: “Last year the noise nuisance was so intrusive residents had to leave their homes.

“The majority of residents are fearful should this application be granted. Should it be refused then all activities could still take place without the use of a tannoy.”

Members voted unanimously in favour of the plan but said there could be no jingles or music.