Harringay online

Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

We live in Wellfield Avenue, Muswell Hill, and most afternoons we are alarmed by what sound like massive explosions. Visitors to our house are as astonished as we are but we can never tell them what the noises are because we don't know. We used to think there must be civil engineering works going on underground, perhaps connected to Ally Pally or Crossrail but those guesses proved wrong. Then we thought they might be ground movement, but the Geological Survey knew of nothing. Our current assumption is that it's a localised meteorological phenomenon, like thunder, caused by air parting and then coming together again on either side of the Muswell Hill hill, as it were, but the Met Office says it knows of no such phenomenon. What is oddest of all is that Haringey has never heard it, or of it, and nor have most of our neighbours, although it is very evident in our northe-east facing garden and in the rooms that back onto the garden. Typically it happens once a day, but we have heard it three and even four times - always in the afternoons and early evenings, but never in the mornings or at night. Is anyone else familiar with this strange and rather scary bang, and can anyone explain it?

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I lI've in Hornsey south of Ally Pally and often hear what sounds like gunfire or fireworks or explosions coming from Muswell Hill direction. Cannot tell how far off they are. There is never any news about it online or locally. Very weird. I used to expect police would be looking into it and there would be reports in local paper. Would be interesting to know.

Ask the secretary of the Muswell Hill allotments nearby if she knows of anyone from their allotment membership having set up a device for scaring off birds from their allotment produce. Can't imagine they allowed to do so but you never know :) 

Good point Matt. This description sounds very much like bird scaring device. A quick Google for regs indicates that this use would be legal since it is infrequent and during the day.
No, absolutely not! This isn't the sound of gunfire, which is à much shorter, more percussive, higher frequency sound. This is like a massive peal of thunder, much lower frequency. It seems to come from the sky, and, most specifically, always from the same direction, due north of us. And it rattles the windows and can be felt in the ground. It's a very big noise. I spent six months logging every single event and sending them to Haringey for investigation. No interest. A council official came to our house one afternoon. There was a boom half an hour before he arrived and another half an hour after he left but, of course, none in the hour he sat here waiting!

Just a thought, could it have been anything to do with the tower block demolitions near the north circ near Station Rd at the end of Bounds Green Rd? Location would seem to match.

No. It's gone on for at least the three years that we've been living here. The demolitions were a momentary event.

Most of your neighbours haven't heard it you say ... over the last 3 years. Hmmm, are you a writer looking for reactions to your mystery for your latest book of fiction? :) ... and then out of the sky came the flashing lights ...

It's not skip trucks going over a speedhump too fast is it? They're amazingly loud.

Haringey has also suggested that and you and they are right: skip trucks going over speed humps can be very loud. But, we think, not THIS loud. Besides which, roads with humps have more than one hump, so you'd expect to hear a series of bangs, maybe not all as loud as each other, but certainly more than one. What we hear is one almighty boom - loud and shocking enough, if you're writing at the time, to make you drop your pen or smudge your writing. 

Have you tried to record the noise or monitor it with a seismic monitor, as its big enough to rattle windows and make you drop your pen, you can get an app.

Interesting that the council acknowledge that skip trucks going over speedhumps sound like explosions...

I have an allotment in Highgate and it is really frowned upon to make any noise at all that could upset the neighbours, this includes listening to the radio or using strimmers at weekends and we support and encourage birds and wildlife on our site. The odd Worzel Gummidge is as radical as it gets in the bird scaring stakes.

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