Wood Smoke Stories

Smoked out in a smokeless zone

Our Neighbours here at North Hykeham England had a log burner fitted 3 winters ago. The first winter they burnt kitchen cabinets, old furniture, chipboard, plywood, painted wood, fence panels etc. … all sliced-up into strips about a foot long and piled against my fence. The stench and black smoke produced was awful.

I contacted them on several occasions about the smoke and smell and the pollution they were causing my family to breathe and the stress it was causing. They weren’t bothered and even declared there wasn’t a problem and shut the door in my face. All this is going on in a so-called SMOKELESS ZONE.

Next plan was to video the smoke and write up a daily report. After gathering 2 months of evidence I contacted the Environmental Health Department. Sent them my diary and a memory stick showing loads of smoke pouring down and across the ground on a daily basis. The EHD were a complete waste of time and asked the offenders to “read the manual”!

The second year was just as bad, with the Environmental Health Department saying they “couldn't find a problem”! (What do they actually do???)

So, third year on I purchased an air quality meter and found that it would even reach “Severely Polluted" with PM2.5 over the 300 range when the neighbours’ log burner was alight.

I wrote them a letter full of facts that I had video evidence of their smoke, their piles of unsuitable “fuel” and readings from my air quality meter and my grave concerns as to what all this pollution was doing to the health of my family. The final statement declared that I would take them to court if they didn’t stop the burning. Success!!!! They stopped, and have now just moved. The house is currently for sale so this log burner hell could re-start with the new owners.

Smoke from a chimney in North Hykeham, England, which is officially a smoke control area.
Nighttime view of smoke from a chimney in North Hykeham, England, which is officially a smoke control area.