Floodlights next to windows, around 100 complaints a year, construction work from 8am six days a week and still no compensation are just a few of the side effects of living next to a railway construction site.
A group made up of Hillingdon Against HS2 campaigners, members of Ruislip Residents' Association and Hillingdon Council officers were invited by HS2 to visit a Crossrail construction site in east London to get an idea of what to expect when HS2 is being built.
The site, at Royal Victoria Dock, was chosen because it offered the closest example of what borough people can expect because tunnel boring machines were in operation to create a tunnel portal, like the one that will be built in West Ruislip.
It also included a vent shaft, similar to one that will be built at the back corner of the Arla site in South Ruislip.
The group was told that Crossrail had received around 100 complaints per year from people living around the site since building began.
Ruislip Against HS2 chairman Lottie Jones said: “There was far more surface work than we had calculated before. It seemed to go on for miles.
“The workers were moving a water utility which has taken around a year to do. This is the sort of work that will be carried out in West End Road.
“It was happening right outside front doors, there wasn’t even enough room for houses to bring a bicycle outside their homes. If Emergency services needed to get to homes they had to go into the construction site. Bus routes were diverted, and the level of noise was quite disturbing,” she said.
Brian Adams, of Ickenham Residents’ Association, said: “Although there was little construction activity taking place the noise from the machinery was intrusive and obviously the construction compounds were visually unpleasant.
“It was re-assuring to hear the efforts made to work with the local community and the procedures that have been put in place to provide a 24/7 response to any issues raised by residents.
“However the scenario at this site is vastly different from that to be experienced in Ickenham, it is an area undergoing major redevelopment, construction at this site will be complete in 3 years and the tunnel spoil and incoming materials are handled by barge, so no HGV traffic on the roads.”