If it’s a byelaw, it doesn’t feature in Register of byelaws – The City of Edinburgh Council, but this does not look like an exhaustive list anyway.
Until this posting I had felt fairly comfortable with flying from Edinburgh Council land. There a couple of reasons:
- I shared with the Council’s Parks department some drone footage that I filmed for Friends of the Braid Hills (see Redirecting...). There were no words of censure, and they supplied some of the information in the film to me
- I have flown around many of Edinburgh’s public parks (for example, Arthur’s Seat, Saughton Park, Craiglockhart Hill and Spylaw) and occasionally seen park workers there. Usually there was no interaction, but on several occasions they have shown a polite interest and nothing more
With this experience, I am unlikely to seek permission in advance, and I will wonder if this initiative is related to another experience. Edinburgh Council approached some of its citizens and asked them to complete an anonymous questionnaire on the use of Edinburgh’s land for filming. It was clear they were working out if and how much they could charge for filming. Some sample questions (and my answers), below:
Scale and impact
3 To what extent do you agree that decisions on events and filming should be based on the impact they will have on people and places?
4 Please use the space below for any comments or suggestions on the above.
A rather strange question - if there was no impact on the people and places, why would there even be a issue? I would disagree with the notion that if someone objected to filming then the permission would not be granted.
Community wealth building
8 To what extent do you agree that ‘The use of council-owned or public good sites for commercial events should be framed within a Community wealth building approach.’?
9 Please use the space below for any comments or suggestions on the above.
If communities wish to increase wealth they can use taxes, local fundraising or voluntary contributions. To penalise users to benefit non-users seems ridiculous.
Open and transparent information
10 At what stage would you like to have information on events and filming?
When the event or filming is approved
11 Please use the space below for any comments or suggestions on the above.
People film all the time - their iPhones, drones, doorbell security systems…! This “unapproved” filming is far more prevalent than anything requiring a formal application.
13 Please use the space below for any comments or suggestions on the above.
It is not clear to me what size of event the authors of this questionnaire are considering.
For me the bottom line is in the .pdf Drone Filming in Edinburgh:
“If person/persons are found to be using an unauthorised drone or model aircraft on or from CEC
land without permission they will be requested to stop immediately. If the user refuses to stop,
Police Scotland will be called to attend to cease activity and remove the user from CEC land.”
I can live with that, since I would usually stop if someone asks nicely. The strange thing is in the wording of the first sentence. There really is no such thing as “an unauthorised drone” - I have a UK-registered drone - so in any case I will not be flying, “an unauthorised drone … without permission”.