Northern Ireland

Foo Fighters concert provokes noise complaints

A Foo Fighters concert held in Belfast on Tuesday has provoked more than 100 noise complaints after being reportedly heard up to 12 miles away.

Thirty-two-thousand fans watched the musicians perform at Tennent's Vital.

The two-day festival was held at Boucher playing fields in the south of the city for the first time.

Belfast City Council received about 120 calls of complaint. It is also believed the police received 20 calls.

A spokesman for the council said half of callers made a formal complaint about the concert sound being heard in other parts of the city. He said the remaining callers were content with the 23:00 BST curfew.

He also said the council had agreed sound levels with organisers in adavance of the event, but had worked with the promoter to reduce the sound levels when it became aware the noise could clearly be heard around the city.

"In advance of the concerts, the promoters wrote to residents in the immediate vicinity, advising them of the events. There were no objections to the granting of the entertainments licence," he added.

The council spokesman said the Belfast Visitor and Convention Bureau had confirmed that every hotel bed in the city was booked for both nights of the festival.

"It is regrettable that people were inconvenienced by last night's event but we hope they can see the bigger picture," he said.

Exceptionally loud

The Stone Roses will be joined by English band Florence and the Machine, Rodrigo Y Gabriela, Gerard i2 and Maverick Sabre when they head line the event on Wednesday.

SDLP councillor Claire Hanna said she had received calls from constituents last night.

"It was exceptionally loud. I welcome that we have concerts of this level... but we do have to balance it with the right of people to enjoy a quiet night at home," she said.

"I understand that the noise carried partly because it was a very still and cloudless night.

"Most residents understand that people want to enjoy a night out but a second night at the same level might provoke a few more calls."

Eileen Fee who lives about a mile away from the concert venue in Osborne Park, Belfast, said it was so loud the "windows shook".

"I just thought I was at the concert, that's how loud it was. It was really impossible to do anything else at home," she said.

"It was just a really dreadful situation. I'm not against the concert but there is an acceptable level of noise."

Businesswoman Grainne McGarvey said she, too, could hear the music from her home about four miles away.

"I pretty much heard every ooh and ah and beat of the drum," she said.

Image caption Foo Fighters front man Dave Grohl entertained the crowd at the Tennent's Vital festival

"I was actually offered a ticket for the concert but I turned it down as I'm not a big fan of the Foo Fighters but I still managed to hear the entire thing.

"I can't wait for Florence and the Machine as I'm a big fan and I think it's fantastic that the bands are here. Tonight I will be sitting with my windows open and a wee glass of wine and not have to worry about getting soaked."

People on BBC Newsline's Facebook page claimed they heard the concert in locations such as Gilnahirk and 12 miles away in Ballygowan in County Down.

More on this story