We have introduced a drone policy in response to an upsurge in public request and usage of drones or unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) on Council-managed land including parks, roads and public open spaces.
You can find a great deal of online guidance, which is regularly updated, on the Civic Aviation Authority (CAA) website.
Essentially, the person controlling a small UAS is fully responsible for the safe operation of any flight, but it is important to consider whether permission, in addition to and separate from a licence from the CAA or others, is needed.
In general terms, and in line with CAA advice, the Council may refuse requests for recreational or commercial purposes as land owner to fly drones on Council land.
Exemptions will only be granted, where using a drone device:
- aids risk reduction in the work place i.e. working at height, building survey work
- is for a professional service, e.g. festivals and events media, filming and so on, while working within the constraints of CAA guidance above.
If you wish to carry out UAS flights on, from or over any Council-owned or managed land, please complete the application form and return it to Public Safety. You must apply well in advance and include:
- flight plan highlighting the flight area and appropriate control points for the applicable areas where the UAS will be flown. This should also include any contingency flight area i.e. any area the UAS may need to go should there be a reason to abandon the flight.
- evidence of CAA licence (where required)
- evidence of public liability insurance
- confirmation of CAA permission (where required)
- risk assessment and method statement which must be specific to the operation in question.