From bustling pubs to sandy beaches - the sounds we miss the most during lockdown

From the bustle of a busy cafe to the lapping of the tide against a sandy beach, they are the soundtracks of our lives - or at least, the lives we all led before March.

The ambient bustle of cafes and restaurants is the most missed noise, according to the survey.
The ambient bustle of cafes and restaurants is the most missed noise, according to the survey.

A new survey of lockdown Britain has identified the ambient sounds people are missing the most while the Covid-19 restrictions remain in force.

In what is a reminder of how we are all social animals, the bonhomie of pubs and the chatter of busy restaurants are among those sounds most yearned for.

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But so too, the suffocating, even oppressive experience of lockdown has left many people wishing to escape into nature to spend some time alone.

The sound of life on the beach ranked second in the survey, with the ambient noise of a "calm and quiet place" also making the top five.

The survey, commissioned by the online retail and technology giant, Amazon, offers a snapshot into the everyday activities long taken for granted, but which now lie tantalisingly within reach as Scotland continues along the road out of lockdown.

Seven out of 10 people (70 per cent) said they missed cafes and restaurants most of all, with more than half (53 per cent) pining for the buzz and clinking of glasses in pubs and bars.

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While a similar number wished they could return to the simple pleasures of a day out with the kids, some 41 per cent of those questioned said they hankered after the sounds and heady atmosphere of large scale events, such as crowded football matches or packed concert venues.

However, the survey also flagged up certain sounds that may surprise some, and shows how many are longing for the return of humdrum normality and a sense of familiarity.

Nearly a third of people (30 per cent) said they missed the soundtrack of their daily commute to work, with 29 per cent missing the chatter of colleagues and the sound of keystrokes in an everyday office environment.

Despite being allowed to exercise outdoors during lockdown, the survey of 2,000 people across the UK, carried out by GingerComms over two days earlier this month, also found that more than a third of people (36 per cent) missed the pumping music and clanging of equipment as they worked out in their local gym.

While Scots will have to wait a little longer before being able to visit the likes of cafes, pubs, and restaurants, Amazon has compiled a series of ambient recordings to pacify those kicking their heels at home.

The playlists, designed for the firm’s Alexa devices, include the rousing sound of a roaring crowd in a busy stadium, and the noise of traffic on a packed motorway.

For those of a gentler persuasion, the company has also produced a cafe-style soundtrack - featuring a milk steamer and the grinding of coffee beans - along with the sounds of the seaside and animals on a farm.

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