Parents summoned to meeting on anti-social behaviour - because their autistic son is too noisy on the trampoline|
PETERBOROUGH, UK: The parents of an autistic boy have been summoned to a meeting with an anti-social behaviour officer on May 2 – because their son is accused of being too noisy on his trampoline.
On April 27, the Evening Telegraph newspaper revealed that Pete and Donna Masters had been ordered to remove the trampoline from their garden at Ashfields, off Thorpe Road, Peterborough.
After a doctor recommended that a trampoline could help his condition, three-year-old Buster has been able to break free from the imprisonment of his autism for the first time.
Now the landlord, Accent Nene Ltd, has written to Mr and Mrs Masters to tell them that the trampoline must be removed by May 7.
In another twist, the housing association has requested that Mrs Masters attend a meeting with an anti-social behaviour officer. Because the meeting coincides with a visit from Buster's occupational therapist, Mr Masters has agreed to go along instead.
He said: "I will fight this all the way – not for me or Donna, but for Buster. It is getting beyond a joke. I cannot believe we are arguing over an 8ft trampoline. The trampoline is there to stay. If they don't like that, I've got a bouncy castle in my garage instead. Are kids not allowed to make a noise any more when they play? The trampoline has helped Buster with his autism and he is able to interact with other children.
"I imagine they might try to serve us with some sort of anti-social behaviour order, but if this got as far as a court, a judge would shake his head and say: 'What is going on here?'"
A letter from a housing officer at Accent Nene Ltd said: "While I am sympathetic about your son's autism, the decision has been made that you need to remove this trampoline because of the noise nuisance that it has caused to other residents, and also because it is a health and safety hazard and is damaging the communal landscaping."
The landlord claims that Mr and Mrs Masters are breaching their tenancy agreement because of the noise that Buster is allegedly making when he plays.
When the Evening Telegraph contacted Accent Nene on May 1, no one was available for comment.
(Source: The Evening Telegraph, May 1, 2007)