Article 16, overflight of bandstand?

I think the answer may be ‘no’ but I’m new still and am working through the ways of thinking…

Article 16 (I joined FPV) permission creates a 30 bubble around uninvolved people. My wife will be playing on Eastbourne Bandstand and they have an audience in front of them but behind them are people wandering on the promenade… Would both groups of people count as an assemmbly? Can I put my Mavic Air 2 up to take a photo? Should i have bought a Mini? I can’t edit so wouldn’t take video that I’d need to add the band’s playing to.

Be gentle with me if i’ve missed a basic rule and shouldn’t even be asking.


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Presumably this is a recreational flight. Article 16 doesn’t cover anything else.

What does your Article 16 permission and handbook say about assemblies?

In the normal definition it’s any group of people who can’t get out of the way of a crashing UAS. So people walking on a promenade - probably ok. People seated at a concert - perhaps not.


Hi Sawk,

My take on it …

I’m thinking that the people in the audience, if they are seated, or in a crowd, then they can’t really quickly get up and move out of the way of a falling drone easily … so would be classed as an assembly.

On the promenade I’m not sure, you’d have to eyeball it on the day wrt the number of people.

With the Mini 2 in open category A1 you could fly up to the boundary of the ‘assembly’, but not over it.

Best wishes,



Perhaps you can find an angle / distance for a photo and avoiding hovering over people.
You have a zoom on MA2 if you use recent firmware - perhaps this can help too.

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You could always take a 48meg photo and crop into which ever part you want.

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The other key thing for Article 16 in this situation is that presumably you’re taking the view it’s a “recreational area”. Your Article 16 permission requires you to undertake a risk assessment in such an area. So the onus is very much on you to reach a decision on whether the risks are tolerable, I’m not sure you’ll have much joy just basing your decision on exact separation distances.


I fly a Mavic air 2 …I took the A2 cofc to ease some of my restrictions , in such a situation I can not intentionally over fly a single person and would have to maintain a minimum distance of 50m from uninvolved people ( distance increases on a 1:1 ratio according to flying height ) I understand this is the CAA recommendation for safety and accept that …so how can article 16 allow me to overfly a single uninvolved person as close as 30 m , it seems to contradict every thing I learnt on the A2 cofc …I’m talking about a single person here I know it’s different for crowds …Alan

The A2 CofC allows you to fly in Open Category, subcategory A2.

Article 16 allows you to fly in the Specific Category.

They are totally different things.

Open Category flights are constrained by simple but (mostly) clear rules that apply to absolutely anyone.

Specific Category flights are subject to an Operational Authorisation from the CAA, and that OA can set entirely different rules. You can get an OA either through the GVC qualification, or under Article 16 if you are a member of one of the model flying associations.

In many cases, the Article 16 OA allows you to do far more than can be done using the A2 CofC: experimenting with the Good 2 Go tool will demonstrate that:


He is right 30 m bubble remember this is for hobbyists Who have flown aircraft for years with no rules it’s to help them out. No commercial flights at all thought. So it has its ups and downs

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Thanks guys that has cleared up the confusion I had about article 16 Vs A2cofc much obliged…Alan


I’m slightly confused, I think! Am I right in saying that if I join FPV UK I automatically get Article 16 permissions? I already have A2CofC.
Any advice would be most helpful before I spend out the necessary 20 quid.

Yes that is the case

Blockquote You must familiarise yourself with the authorisation and the FPV UK handbook and accept them before flying under its terms. There are certain requirements to report accidents and incidents when flying which are relevant when flying under the extra privileges allowed by the authorisation.

Once you are familiar with the authorisation and are happy to fly within it’s terms simply log into your FPV UK account and tick the box next to: ‘I have read and understood the conditions and restrictions of the Article 16 Operational Authorisation’

Fantastic, thanks! I’ve read all the blurb from FPV UK and I’m quite happy to sign/tick the box.
I will join immediately.
Paul B.


Yes it’s about £40 a year. And that gives you hobbyist insurance not commercial.

I’m slightly relieved that my original questions wasn’t as straightforward as it could have been. I hate ‘it depends’ answers as much as I love the personal responsibility side of things. I’m in the middle of my CofC and expect that to help my thinking / understanding to do an acceptable risk assessment.

Thanks All. Simon.