Hollywood Silver Fox Farm carried on a business of raising silver foxes which are very skittish - if disturbed during breeding they may refuse to breed, miscarry or kill their young. Due to a dispute between the plaintiff and the defendant the defendant had his son fire off a gun on his land as close to the breeding pens as possible. Hollywood brought action for an injunction against this behaviour.
- Does a landowner have an absolute right to create noise on his property?
Emmett argued that the plaintiff's business required an extraordinary degree of quiet and therefore should not prevent him from using his land in a way that would not be a nuisance to the general public and, relying on the decision in Bradford, that his right to shoot on his own land could not be made illegal by his motives.
The court held that there was a nuisance and that when considering a nuisance for noise the motive for the production of the noise must be taken into consideration; whether or not he was using the land in a legitimate and reasonable manner. Citing a previous case, they held that "[n]o proprietor has an absolute right to create noises upon his own land, because any right which the law gives him is qualified by the condition that it must not be exercised to the nuisance of his neighbours".
E Follows Christie v Davey (1893), to say that it is a nuisance.
E's actions were driven by malice and/or spite. E was doing so deliberately for a malicious purpose.
Holding: H awarded 250 pounds, and an injunction limited to breeding season.
The right to create noise on one's land is always subject to the nuisance of one's neighbours.