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Antisocial behaviour

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We want our neighbourhoods to be safe places for everyone. We take reports of antisocial behaviour seriously whether by our residents, their visitors or their pets.

Understanding antisocial behaviour (ASB)

What is antisocial behaviour?

Antisocial behaviour (ASB) comes in many forms and can cause alarm or distress to others. Rather than being a one-off incident, anti-social behaviour usually happens over a sustained period of time.

Examples include:

  • Physical violence and/or threats of violence

  • Hate-related incidents (such as those based on race, sexual orientation, gender, disability or belief)

  • Verbal abuse, harassment, intimidation or threatening behaviour

  • Noise nuisance – an ongoing or persistent noise at any time of the day or night

  • Vandalism and damage to properties, including graffiti

  • Dropping litter or dumping rubbish, including fly-tipping

  • Criminal behaviour, for example prostitution or sexual acts, drug dealing, violence or threats of violence

  • Pets being allowed to foul in public spaces

  • Misuse of communal areas, public areas or loitering

What we don’t consider to be antisocial behaviour

We would not normally consider behaviour around different cultures or lifestyles, or which may not be considered unreasonable by most people, as antisocial behaviour. These are:

  • Cooking smells
  • DIY during reasonable hours
  • Minor or occasional car repairs
  • Young people gathering socially or children playing
  • Someone parking lawfully outside your home
  • Civic disputes between neighbours (such as boundary issues or shared driveways)
  • Day to day living noises such as:
    • Footsteps in a neighbouring property
    • Children playing
    • Occasional dog barks
    • The noise of household appliances, or music or TV noise at a low level

You can find more information about antisocial behaviour via Citizens Advice.

Types of antisocial behaviour

  • Abandoned vehicles

    A vehicle will not be considered to be abandoned if it is:

    • taxed;
    • legally parked and is on a road with no parking restrictions;
    • in good condition; and
    • is not causing an obstruction, meaning access or exit is blocked.

    You can check if a vehicle is taxed before reporting it.

    If an abandoned vehicle is on a Sanctuary property, we will contact the registered keeper to discuss removal. If not, it must be reported to the local council.

    What are the rules about parking near your home?

    Vehicles can only be parked in designated parking areas. Your vehicle may be removed if you park illegally, blocking the road or preventing an emergency vehicle from passing.

    Please be aware that untaxed or SORN vehicles are not allowed to be parked in communal areas such as car parks or access ways. A SORN vehicle without valid insurance may only be kept on a private driveway or in a garage.

  • Drug use or dealing, Cuckooing and County Lines

    County Lines is a term used when drug gangs from big cities expand their operations to smaller towns.

    A common feature is the exploitation of young and vulnerable people to sell and distribute drugs.  Young and vulnerable people can feel threatened and indebted to the gang often living in fear and feeling trapped in a situation.

    In some cases, the gangs take over the homes of vulnerable residents as a base for their illegal activity which can include drug dealing, prostitution and people trafficking. This is known as ‘Cuckooing’.

    Signs to look out for:

    • An increase in people entering and leaving the property at odd times of the day and night
    • An unusually high number of vehicles outside the property for short periods
    • Increased antisocial behaviour in and around the property such as increased noise or evidence of drug taking
    • Curtains or blinds closed all the time.


    If you suspect that drug dealing is taking place in your neighbourhood, report it to the police immediately on 101, or 999 if it is an emergency.

    Signs to look out for:

    • Lots of different people coming and going from an address and at odd times of the day and night
    • Strange smells coming from the property
    • Windows covered or curtains closed all the time
    • Cars near the property for a short period of time.

    If you are concerned about drug dealing, cuckooing or county lines crime in your community you should call the police on 101 or you can make an anonymous report to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

    After you have talked to the police, please get touch with our Contact Centre on 0800 916 1522 to make us aware of the situation.  

    Alternatively, you can complete the web form below. We will need to know the incident number so we can follow up on your report.

  • Damage to property, vandalism or graffiti

    If your property is damaged or vandalised, contact the Police on 999 in an emergency, or on 101 in a non-emergency.

    Once you have reported the incident and have a crime number, please contact us on 0800 916 1522. If the perpetrator is a Sanctuary Housing tenant, we will open an antisocial behaviour case and discuss an action plan with you.

    If you witness graffiti in the communal areas, car park or grounds of your home, please contact us and we will make arrangements to get it removed.

  • Fly-tipping

    Not only does fly-tipping pose a risk to people and wildlife, damage the environment and spoil the enjoyment of our towns and countryside, it also costs a lot of money to clear up.

    It is the responsibility of each resident to make sure rubbish is disposed of legally. Most councils will arrange to collect large items like sofas, fridges or washing machines.

    Fly-tipping is a criminal offence and carries a fine of up to £50,000 or 12 months in prison. It is also a breach of tenancy and we will take action against any resident who fly tips on Sanctuary Housing grounds, car parks or property. This could include being recharged for the costs of removal, being given an antisocial behaviour contract or, in severe cases, an injunction or eviction.

    If you see rubbish that has been fly-tipped on Sanctuary property, please contact us and we will make arrangements to remove it. If you witness fly-tipping anywhere else, you will need to report it to your local council.

  • Noise nuisance

    Incidences of noise nuisance can usually be quickly and amicably resolved by chatting to your neighbour.

    However, we understand there may be times when you may not feel comfortable speaking directly to someone to try to resolve an issue. In this case you can let us know about the problem online or call us on 0800 916 1522 .

    We won't investigate:

    • a one-off event
    • everyday living noises (doors opening/ closing, footsteps, use of household appliances, people talking, low level sound from television/ radio)
    • DIY during the day
    • children playing or baby crying
    • dogs barking (unless excessive and frequent)
    • where properties have poor sound insulation

    Following your report we will:

    • Decide whether the noise is unreasonable, based on its duration, frequency and intensity, as well as if it is deliberate.
    • Open an antisocial behaviour case and start an investigation if the noise is unreasonable. If a case is opened, we will agree an action plan with you, action may include:
      • Referral to mediation service.
      • Use to tools to encourage a change a behaviour.  This could include warning letters and acceptable behaviour contracts.
      • Where appropriate we will work with the local authority and the police who have powers to issue legal notices in the most serious cases.

    If after investigation we are unable to deal with the problem, you may be able to take action under Section 82 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

  • Violence, verbal abuse, intimidation or harassment

    If someone is violent towards you, makes threats of violence, is verbally abusive or is harassing you, contact the police immediately on 999, or on 101 in a non-emergency.

    Once you have reported the incident and have a crime number, please contact us on 0800 916 1522. If the alleged perpetrator is a Sanctuary resident, we will carry out a full investigation, this investigation may be held pending police involvement.

    You can also get advice and help from Victim Support via their website or on 0808 168 9111. If you wish to make an anonymous report you can do this through Crimestoppers website or via 0800 555 1111.

What should you do if you experience antisocial behaviour?

  • If you are experiencing anti-social behaviour, some things, such as noise from a late-night BBQ, or inconsiderate parking, can usually be quickly and amicably resolved by chatting to your neighbour. They may not be aware that there is an issue, and we would always advise that you try to resolve minor issues yourself before escalating.
  • However, we understand there may be times when you may not feel comfortable speaking directly to someone to try to resolve an issue. In this case you
    • Report the issue to us using our online form below
    • or call us on 0800 916 1522
  • ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​If you are threatened with violence, or are concerned for the safety of yourself or others, call the police immediately on 999, or in a non-emergency on 101.

What will we do when you tell us about antisocial behaviour?

When you report antisocial behaviour to us, we will:

  • Decide whether it is antisocial behaviour and then prioritise it depending on its nature and how it is affecting you
  • Ask you for as much detail as possible to make sure that we fully understand the issue and the impact it’s having on you
  • We will not disclose your identify without your consent.  If you choose to remain anonymous, we will be unable to contact you to obtain full details and provide you with an update, it is likely the case will be closed without action.
  • Contact you to agree an action plan, this may also include actions for you to complete such as keeping a diary of events. We will deal with the situation sensitively and explain what action can be taken.
  • Make sure that you are kept updated throughout the case, and explain if we are unable to share specific details
  • Take reports seriously and where appropriate we may work with external agencies to resolve cases of antisocial behaviour, including the Environmental Health, Council, local councillors, community groups, mediation providers and the police.

As part of case management:

  • We will offer a range of relevant support and advice to try to resolve your complaint
  • Where informal action hasn’t worked, or the situation is more serious, we may need to take formal action. Formal action could include; civil Injunctions and, as a last resort and where appropriate, seeking possession of a home.

Report antisocial behaviour

Community Trigger

Please note, this only applies in England and does not apply in Scotland.

If you have repeatedly reported an anti-social behaviour issue to us and we have not taken any action to resolve it, you can apply for the Community Trigger (ASB Case Review).

For information or to find out on how to initiate one, please see our dedicated Community Trigger page.