The sounds of our cities can be as distinctive as the sights and smells, but have you ever wondered what noise really is synonymous with your city?

Surveying the nation

In a recent survey by Specsavers Hearing Centres, 2,000 UK residents were asked to name the most reminiscent sounds associated with the nation’s urban spaces. Hearing the chimes of Big Ben was voted as the UK’s most significant sound, with 81% saying it was the first sound they recalled when they thought of the capital.

Across the country the seagull squawks of Brighton pier were the most memorable for Brightonians and The Beatles blasting out of the Cavern Club characterised home for Liverpudlians.

The rattle and rumble of the tube resonated with Londoners, whereas Glaswegians voted the roar of the Hampden Park crowds and the buskers of Buchanan Street as their treasured noises.

Importance of regular hearing checks

Despite respondents celebrating the sounds of their cities, 67% admitted to never having their hearing checked. Colin Campbell, director of professional services at Specsavers Hearing Centres, said: ‘Hearing loss happens gradually and the subtle loss of everyday sounds, from the hearing your own footsteps to the general buzz of your own city, is a sign that you should get your hearing checked.

‘Sadly many of us are guilty of taking our hearing for granted, so it’s not surprising to see such a high percentage of people saying they’ve never had their hearing checked. I’d urge those over the age of 40 to incorporate an annual hearing check in to their general healthcare routine.’

How does your city sound?

According to the survey the top sounds per city as voted by locals are:

London: Big Ben Chimes (81%)

Glasgow: The Hampden Roar (51%)

Edinburgh: One o’clock gun (58%)

Manchester: Football fans at Old Trafford (55%)

Cardiff: Cheer of Welsh rugby fans (54%)

Leeds: Bustle of shoppers at Trinity Leeds (73%)

Liverpool: The Beatles (64%)

Brighton: Seagulls squawking (44%)

Exeter: Bells at Exeter Cathedral (81%)

Belfast: Jazz playing at Cathedral Quarter (52%)

Norwich: Choristers at Norwich Cathedral (47%)

Newcastle: ‘Why aye man!’ (68%)

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