A play centre and cafe is set to close after getting repeated noise complaints from businesses below it.
Little Play Town in Odiham, Hampshire, initially received a complaint about noise a year ago, and solutions to reduce this noise have failed. Hart District Council has reportedly said this is due to “poor quality flooring”.
Virna Browne, who owns the centre, told the BBC: “As we can’t fix it, the landlord is evicting us.”
The play centre is an educational role-play facility for children aged seven and under, set up to allow kids to pretend to work in different professions.
Browne explained in the past year they have been trying to rectify the problems that their below neighbours have had with noise. She added that she wouldn’t have signed the lease on the building if she knew it would provide such issues.
The council refused to soundproof the premises because of a lack of detail provided about the impact on the structure of the building, according to The Times.
The matter came to a head recently when a complaint was made during a party planned for children with disabilities.
Browne said closing the centre means 10 staff members will lose their job.
On 12 November, the centre wrote on Facebook: “We are so sad to say that Little Play Town is being closed down by the council. We would like to thank every adult, baby and child that came to Little Play Town. I’ve loved seeing your reaction when you come in. All the wows! And the smiles, all the fun, the learning and the experiences that the kids and adults had.”
The centre added they are not looking for anyone to boycott the nearby businesses, they just wanted to let everyone know why they will be closing.
“We are still open until such time as the council enforces the noise abatement or the landlord serves us a section 146 which solicitors said, in a letter, they intend to do,” the Facebook status continued.
“So please come and enjoy these last moments with us and celebrate the time we were open, until such time that we are forced to close our doors.”
One mum who was at the party at the weekend which caused a noise complaint, wrote: “I feel awful that our party on Saturday exacerbated an awful situation with your neighbours which I was completely unaware about beforehand. All the children had a wonderful time and as always your staff very accommodating of everyone attending.”
Another person wrote: “Can we not get a petition signed to help keep Little Play Town open? There are not many places in the area we can take our little ones and this place was perfect.”
HuffPost UK has contacted Hart District Council and will update this piece when they respond.