RAF Brize Norton says it is “working hard” to cut noise problems after a spike in complaints from residents living close to the base.

The Carterton airbase has received 958 complaints since the Hercules fleet moved there from RAF Lyneham in June 2012, compared to just 23 in the previous year.

RAF Brize Norton said it very much regrets the “serious disturbance” to residents and is conducting a noise survey to find a solution.

The problem comes from the testing of repaired Hercules aircraft, which is being conducted next to the base’s perimeter fence just metres from people’s homes.

Black Bourton resident Monica Tudor said: “Many, many times it went on through the night, having gone on through the day – by which time you are screaming with frustration and you cannot think straight.

“It was noise that was deeply penetrating and at the worst times it was torture. I have sat at the computer trying to work and crying because it was so bad.”

But she said the noise had improved in the last month after RAF chiefs moved the aircraft away from the perimeter fence.

She said: “The base is addressing the issue. They do understand there is a problem.

“The main issue now is waiting for the noise survey results to be published so we can be told what will be the long-term solution to this.”

Alex Jones, 67, of Black Bourton, said: “At the moment it is a lot better.

“The biggest complaint is when they have done repair work on a plane and they run the motors for four hours at full revs to check that they are airworthy.

“It is horrific for those who live close to the runway.”

Ann Cadogan, of Alvescot, said: “When they first moved in it was terrible but now that they no longer drone all night it is a lot easier.”

Brize Norton Parish Council chairman Keith Glazier said: “The change in noise levels since the arrival of the Hercules fleet from RAF Lyneham has considerably increased the noise nuisance with the village.

“Arrivals and departures is readily accepted, but the most constant noise and cause of complaints is the ground running and testing of aircraft.

“Any solution to reduce the ground running noise would be much appreciated by the local population.”

RAF Brize Norton spokes-woman Anita Jack said: “We accept there is a problem with the level of noise experienced by local residents and we very much regret this. The MoD and the Station are working hard to address the issue.

“We are now investigating a range of potential options to further mitigate the impact of noise on the local community ahead of the report being finalised.”