Frustration as Manchester Night & Day Café noise decision pushed back again

Oldham Street’s Night & Day Cafe has been faced with another adjournment of the noise abatement notice, in what was supposed to be a week that provided clarity for the venue owners.

It is the second time that proceedings have been adjourned after a three-day hearing in January also failed to result in a breakthrough on the issue.

It was deemed by the judge, at Manchester Magistrates Court, that further sound testing would be needed to determine the noise limits in a complaint by a now-former nearby neighbour.

District Judge, Margaret McCormack yesterday said: “I am going to adjourn. I am not an engineer and I need to have something in front of me and ask any relevant questions.”

Six more days of testing will be carried out over the next few weeks across Night & Day and neighbouring flats.  

Manchester City Council wants to issue a noise limit on the venue. Both parties have struggled to come to an agreement over the specifics of any noise limit.

Jennifer Smithson, owner of Night & Day, has previously said: “It is absolutely terrifying that the venue could be taken away from us.”

Noise level experts on both sides have disagreed over what the right decibel levels should be, with Night & Day suggesting that if they compromise too much then it would have a major impact on their business.

Another reason why the noise limit is a contentious issue, is that any breach of the licence condition could result in prosecution.

The 1975’s Matty Healy has spoken out in support of the music venue (image credit: Begona)

The former resident who issued the complaint had moved in during lockdown while the venue was shut.

The noise abatement order was issued by Manchester City Council later in November.

Manchester City Council said to the NME that they have sought to “reach an amicable solution with Night & Day,” that would help them remain commercially viable.

There has been strong support in favour of Night & Day. More than 98,000 people have signed a petition to remove the Noise Abatement Notice.

The petition has also been endorsed by Elbow’s Guy Garvey, The 1975’s Matty Healy and The Charlatans’ Tim Burgess.

It is not the first time that the venue has been taken to court over noise issues. In 2014, Night & Day faced the threat of permanent closure after another neighbour filed a noise complaint.

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