Sydney Opera House Fined For Breaching Noise Limits During Florence + The Machine Gig

The Sydney Opera House has been fined $15,000 for exceeding noise limits during a Florence + The Machine gig in 2015.

As The Australian reports, Florence Welch and co. played four shows on the Opera House forecourt back in November 2015, receiving numerous complaints for residents of the infamous ‘toaster’.

The fine issued by NSW Planning and Environment is the highest possible that the department can hand down for breaching noise regulations.

Residents of the ‘toaster’ have long complained that the Opera House were breaching noise restrictions with their outdoor concerts and this fine is a small win for them.

Last year, Crowded House played four shows on the Opera House forecourt with frontman Neil Finn poking fun at the residents of the ‘Toaster’.

“To all the nice people in the Toaster. When they bought their seven million dollar apartment they thought God there’s gonna be some nice music to listen to, let’s hear it for them,” he said during the final show after several complaints about the shows from residents.

‘Toaster’ resident Bill Moss, a Macquarie banker, has spoken out about the noise breaches saying, “Sydney Opera House has always denied it breached sound limits but numerous residents have complained and we also referred the matter to the Department of Planning and Heritage.”

He also said that the first of Florence’s first shows was the loudest, however, the fine was issued for the third.

An Opera House spokesperson said, “In any concert levels are adjusted throughout in an attempt to comply with sound limits while delivering the best possible audience experience. In this instance, the right balance was not achieved. The sound conditions set in 2004 under the original forecourt DA were very difficult to monitor and ­manage.”

In October 2016, the Department of Planning and Environment approved modifications to the Sydney Opera House’s current Development Application (DA), including changes to how sound levels are monitored during outdoor performances.

“There should be a full and independent public inquiry into the development application,” Mr Moss said.

Just a week before Florence + The Machine’s performances, Tame Impala’s first show on the forecourt was critiqued by fans because the volume was too low. The Opera House responded by saying they would be conducting, “thorough testing of sound levels.”

UPDATE 28/02/17: Here’s Why There’ll Be Fewer Shows On The Sydney Opera House Forecourt From Now On

Gallery: Florence + The Machine – Sydney Opera House Forecourt 13.11.15 / Photos: Maria Boyadgis

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