"Silent Disco" on the music festival in Lille

"Silent Disco" on the music festival in Lille

Jun 22, 2022, 8:20:08 PM UTC
Why does the police intervene during the music festival but not during the rest of the year to fight noise pollution?
Volt Lille - Fête de la musique

> During the music festival, music was only played in specific places.
>The municipal police prevented residents from playing improvised concerts in their streets.
> On the other 364 days of the year, residents often ask for interventions to stop the night-time noise, but to no avail.

Lille, 22th of june 2022

The summer solstice marked the return of the music festival yesterday after a two-year absence in Lille due to Covid. But a lot has changed: before, the evening was an opportunity for citizens to play in the street and one could hear heavy metal, songs and electronic music for a few hundred meters in the city centre of Lille. Yesterday, there was only music in certain streets and the municipal police ensured that no music was played outside the authorised areas.

It is a pity that on the one day when music is tolerated or even encouraged, citizens cannot celebrate because of the intervention of the municipal police, whereas throughout the year, night-time noise pollution is a problem that often goes unaddressed: either the municipal police do not have enough staff to respond to requests, or residents cannot be identified, or (in the case of the Rue de la Soif) no offences seem to be punished at night. The city has set up a night council to draw up a charter, but much remains to be done. A look abroad might give many ideas:

  • In Germany, cities have citizens' offices and it is compulsory to register on the residents' list when moving to a new city (this automatically puts the newcomer on the electoral roll). This makes it easier to identify noisy residents at night, which allows the municipal police to follow up complaints).
  • The municipal police are supported by the city's registry office, which also monitors night-time tranquillity. 
  • Quiet periods at night are respected, bars risk losing their licence if they do not prevent their customers from making noise outside and the police are present on the hot spots all night if necessary.

Sven Franck, responsibl for Volt Lille : "We must be aware that noise pollution increases stress and has proven negative effects on health. I myself lived in Rue Gambetta near Rue Solferino for several years. The police did not react to neighbours blaring their stereos every week until dawn, nor to daily supermarket deliveries at three in the morning, nor to street parties. By imposing silence on the music festival, one wonders why peace and quiet at night is not a priority on the other 364 days of the year.

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Eric Galéra - Head of Volt Hauts-de-France
Mail : eric.galera@volteuropa.org 

Sven Franck - Co-President of Volt France
Mail : sven.franck@volteuropa.org   

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