Tempers have been fraying

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As temperatures have soared across the country, the summer is also hotting up in other ways.

Local charity West Sussex Mediation Service, which helps people in conflict resolve their differences, reports a very busy July. By 25th July the charity had received 36 new referrals. Ten of those relate to antisocial behaviour and four for noise nuisance. Tempers are starting to fray.

The charity specialises in mediating neighbour disputes and is used to seeing an upward trend in enquiries during the summer months, but this July has proved to be their second busiest on record.

People are likely to be outside a lot more during the hot weather, so there is an increased chance of people meeting each other in circumstances that could result in altercations.

In fact, hot and especially humid weather is known to be associated with increases in aggression, as well as a lower general mood.

That’s because trouble sleeping, dehydration and restrictions on our daily actives - such as being cooped up inside all day to avoid the sweltering heat - may all contribute to a worsening mood in hot weather.

West Sussex Mediation Service mediators are here to help cool things down and restore some normality. We currently have cases relating to loud music, dogs barking, children screaming, trampolines, noisy DIY and verbal abuse. Because of our busy workload we are currently recruiting more volunteer mediators, particularly in the west of the county.

West Sussex Mediation Service helps those suffering conflicts in their lives in a wide variety of situations using skilled volunteer mediators. The charity can be contacted on 0300 200 0025 or via info@wsms.org.uk

Nick Handley

Service co-ordinator, West Sussex Mediation Service, North Street, Horsham