The London Noise Map

I’m often asked “what happened to the London Noise Map, as I found it so useful”.

I was the project manager for the London (Road Traffic) Noise Map which was published in 2004 – which seems a long time ago now.  Defra got us to do many presentations about the map and the reception was enthusiastic. But the maps have to be re-done every five years under the European Directive, so by now they have been re-done twice – in 2004 and in 2014.

The London Road Traffic Noise Map was done in far greater detail than required by the EU Directive, which only requires broad statistics on the number of people exposed to certain levels of noise  in ‘agglomerations’ and alongside major noise sources.

It seems that when the maps were re-done, it was decided not to publish the detailed maps, but only the statistics.  I am not sure whether these statistics can show whether areas are getting noisier or quieter, as there has been a significant growth in population over this time, and this will inevitably mean that number exposed to noise will increase even if the noise sources stay the same.

I am intending to do a bit of work on this and I hope to be able to report back.

I have even been asked if I have copies of the original map that I can supply.  I’m afraid that I can’t do this, as it is copyrighted by Defra, and in any case it is likely to be out of date.  I will look into how people might be able to produce maps of smaller ares of interest from recent data.


Leave a Reply