Corby Borough Council proposal to ban drone flights over council recreational land


Good evening all,

I am completely new to drone flying, so new in fact my drone is sat in its box still awaiting my 50th birthday early in December, As a responsible person I have been doing some research about my drone, the laws relating to flying drones in the UK, visiting the DroneSafe website etc, watching lots of instructional videos etc. everything I can to ready myself for when I eventually get to fly my drone for the first time.

However this evening during a google search I learnt that my local borough council are planning to ban drone flights from either taking off/landing or overflying any of it recreational spaces by amending local bylaws relating to such spaces.

Obviously this concerns me greatly, after having invested close on £1k for my drone and equipment, I don’t want it to be shut down before I even get it out of the box, I am in the morning contacting the council to find out what the current status of this process is at, as I strongly want to have a say in this, and will obviously if i’m not too late want to take part in the public consultation.

The council says its main reasons for wanting to take this action to the change to the existing bylaws is that without the change the authority could be liable if someone was injured as a result of drone activity, they went on to say that the council did not have any public land viable where drone users could fly their model aircraft, They also claim that drone could be used to fly over and observer peoples gardens, and that they would not accept any applications from private individuals to fly drones, and only applications from companies would be entertained for certain purposes and of course emergency services.

So my question to you all is this:

  1. Is there anywhere I can go to obtain information relating to the number of instances where a drone has been used as a reason to bring legal action against a local authority.

  2. Who actually owns the airspace above these open spaces?

  3. Surely current legislation, combined with incoming regulations (November next year I believe) are enough to protect the council from allegations/complaints, these rules/regulations must cover issues such a privacy already, and if were talking about the privacy of those using the park, what about the fact I can record anyone in a public place with a mobile phone, or the 100’s of cctv cameras they pass by, or the dash cams they are captured on, is this any different?

And finally, does anyone else live in an area this has been adopted, i mean a total ban on flying them, their proposal covers 48 public places in and around the Corby area, with no provision to be made for a designated flying area.


The only one I can answer is that the council do not own the airspace. They have no authority to stop flights over their land. They may as well say Ryanair are not allowed to overfly their land.

TO/L involves you physically being on their land with your UAV and it’s their shout.

Just be responsible is the advice I would impart. Maintain the separation distances etc.


If worse comes to worse. Someone will tell you to spot flying here.

But, be sensible with your flying times . Dont go to your local park midday Saturday afternoon. I normally fly early mornings or early evenings. Generally on a weekday. I try to limit my contact with members of the public as much as possible. I’d advise getting some public liability insurance. Its only £20 a year for £5 million cover. I always keep a copy of my liability insurance documents with me and also a copy of the drone code. But it also depends on how you handle a situation if confronted. I’ve never had any negative interaction, and im happy to show people what I’m doing and have only ever been met with curiosity… so far ….

you could also look for a local model flying club they normally have a designated field to get you going also.


No mate - mainly because of this:

It simply doesn’t exist…

Sure, they can put you off taking off/landing on their land, but they simply do not own the airspace above their land.

Welcome to Grey Arrows @OldRusty :smiley:


I live in Corby and I’ve only ever used their grounds for short test flights over the last 10 years or so that I’ve flown UAV.
Personally I’m not interested in arguing with those in office any more, it’s clear that they will ban it wheather I like it or not.
Here is my proposal to you, let’s arrange a meet up and I’ll show you where I’ve been flying from over the last 10 years; and with permission too from the farmer.


Hi Ellis / @OldRusty , and a belated welcome to GADC.

If you haven’t already, take a look at the Map of Members. This is a relatively new feature so not everyone is on there as yet, but I’m sure there are other members in your neck of the woods that will come and say Hi that may also have ideas on locations.

And, thanks for already having added your location. :+1:

Also, if you’ve not seen it, check out our map of places where members have flown. Obviously, this is mainly populated by posts from the more sedate drones than yours, but there’s always a change that it might be of assistance.


Thanks for the reply and kind offer of assistance, It was my intention just to use some areas for a few short practice flights, and then move further afield.

Just for information, I contacted the council today to ascertain the status of the proposal, last time it was discussed was back in July, where they said they support the proposal, but its a very long and drawn out process.
The next phase has to be a public consultation, then it has to go back to government for their input, they also have to put it up to public consultation, then it comes back to local government, another public consultation and then eventually it may get brought into force with the bylaw being amended.

However there has been talk of putting the whole thing on hold until new legislation comes into force to see what that will mean to the council, and also there is a hefty cost involved in pushing this forward, so wont be holding my breath on this one!

Once again thank you for all the kind welcome messages and btw @SkyDonkey just out of interest who do you use as an insurer??


all I can say is ,get flying !.


Drone insurance… I think a few guy insure through here. once you’ve registered and paid up you log into your acc and just print off your certificates.


“FPV UK is the national governing body for radio control FPV and drone flying in the UK.”

Are they really?


Suffolk and Forest Heath Have already banned drone flights rom their parks and “other places”. They used the CAA drone code to say you cannot fly over congested areas! So I have found cooperating farmer who says help yourself! Great. I too am a newbie so still searching out other sites.


If they are it’s news and as far as I know there’s no such body, but I’m open to correction.


FPV UK used to have that strap line plastered across the middle of their web site earlier in the year:

It’s since been replaced with:

Our members are covered by our £5m public liability insurance for all their recreational drone and model flying (FPV or line of sight)




below is the truth, and any .model flying club in the country can be involved if they so wish, I believe that a national body would require an act of parliament that’s why we have the CAA.

GADC if they so wish can be part of the on going interaction like other clubs have with the bodies mentioned below.

Every single member of GADC should be aware that they can lobby their local MP for their voice to be heard in parliament; that’s what FPVUk members did in 2009.


FPV UK is an association of recreational radio control drone and model aircraft (technically ‘unmanned aircraft’) pilots

FPV UK was formed in 2009 to champion and protect the hobby/ sport of FPV flying and successfully persuaded the CAA to issue an exemption for FPV flying in 2009. This FPV exemption has been renewed every year since.

Our members fly all kinds of drones and radio control models for recreation.

We welcome everyone and everything; whether you have a tiny Tello, an expensive Inspire 2, a super fast 250 racing quad, or a beautiful balsa wood scale model, and whether you fly it by line of sight, or FPV.

FPV UK works with the regulator for UK aviation – the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), the National Air Traffic Service (NATS), the Department for Transport (DfT), Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the House of Lords and other bodies, on matters pertaining to “drones”, FPV and recreational model flying.