I really like The Rainbow — a pub always slightly further up Digbeth High Street than you think it is. I like it when there are bands I like on, I also like it when it’s quiet. It’s quiet in the day a lot, which musn’t make much dosh and it really makes all its money from being what it is — a fantastic live music venue.
And that’s the problem it seems. It’s too loud and a (that’s right 1 – reportedly) complaint has been made to Birmingham City Council Environmental Health. But it’s enough to threaten the place with closure. Nicky Digbeth has the full sp.
Look at the picture, does the pub look near to anything that might be affected by any amount of noise? Look at this overhead view:
To the rear (north-ish) of the pub, a warehouse run by the pub, to the west, east: mostly closed commercial premises [EDIT seems the car showroom to the east is open – take that recession] (which wouldn’t be open at night when the music was on anyway). To the south; a wide dual carriageway and one of those ‘store the junk you’ve acquired’ places [EDIT, that’s a bit up the road, there’s a furniture shop & other stuff too]. I’ve not got a noise-ometer, but it’s a fair bet that night-time noise doesn’t harm the operations of these things. The nearest residential development is (by estimate) 250 metres away, and is on the other side of some hefty buildings.
Here’s the science bit*: “In a normal three dimensional setting, the intensity of sound waves will be attenuated according to the inverse square of the distance from the source” Which by my calculation (oh alright then I used this website) means that if the bands in the rainbow were at 100dB in the back of the pub (estimated from here), it would at the most (given no walls in the way, and no air dampening) be 46.02dB 250 meters away. The Noise Abatement Society says a library is normally 35 decibels, Traffic at 50km/h: 60-80 decibels. There’s a big road in between the Rainbow and the flats in question.
Doesn’t sound so loud all of a sudden, does it?
Here’s the rational thinking person’s view**: It’s baffling that someone would buy a residence that was sold to them as being in a ‘vibrant city centre location’ and then bitch when they realise the vibrancy doesn’t work 9 to 5 hours!. Birmingham regulars will have seen this depressing tale unfold before in the late 90’s with Jazz/Blues live venue The Fiddle and Bone, unfortunately many letters to MP’s and the press came to nought and now that place now stands like some beer themed Marie Celeste.
So, any lawyers care to help Digbeth retain it’s vibrancy?
*look, this might all be nonsence, I’m guessing and using the web.
**okay it’s Midge, but he’s right.