Hobbyist + filming + history

Life is certainly more complicated these days, especially as I have discovered taking my first tentative steps into the world of filming with a drone.
I am a filmmaking hobbyist and not earning a penny from short-form history projects.
Of course to get that nice crane and dolly shots would be possible using lots of gear but as an old buzzard, I am a bit past all that! So my attention turned to the amazing world of drones.
Filming above and around a church for example in my city centre would be wonderful but I realised there would be perhaps safety issues even with the smallest camera drone.
However, little did I know the enormous amount of rules and regulations there are!
It seems impossible to fly anywhere let alone in a town or city but I can understand the safety issues but it is all rather disappointing.
I suppose the Yorkshire Moors it will have to be or invest in a big crane. :frowning:


Hi @Andrea and welcome to GADC, I wouldn’t get too hung up on the rules, at first glanec they do seem very restrictive, however there are still lots of opportunities to fly within the rules

Not if they are to be believed


Enjoy your stay with us, check out our very own Dronescene for member added places to fly as well as all the info for pre flight planning you could ever need


I’d suggest they aren’t to be believed. The Park Authority owns hardly any of the land in the Park, and from a quick search I can’t find any sign of there being bye-laws in place. So the absolute most they can do is ask someone to move along for trespassing. And that still leaves over 95% of the Park which they don’t own and can’t control.

Re: filming churches in a city centre - there are several ways this can be done legally, but it’s always simplest with permission of the property owner. A sub-250g drone can be flown anywhere you like so long as you can be sure there’s no risk of injury or damage to property - if you have the property owner’s involvement that helps keep a space clear to increase confidence it’s safe. You have similar flying capabilities until the end of 2022 with a sub-500g drone and an A2 CofC - no minimum distance to uninvolved persons, you just can’t fly above them.

You can also fly a larger drone at 50m clearance in a city centre with a GVC Operational Authorisation - the challenge with that can be finding a safe area well clear of people for take-off and landing.

If the church site has enough space and there’s no risk of uninvolved people wandering in, you can also film using an A2 CofC - you just need a spot that’s 50m clear of any boundaries to adjacent properties not under your control.


Chris, thank you for your interesting reply!. I am heartened to hear your comments! Of course, I have much to learn and will do so in time but you give me some hope not all is lost, ha! Cheers!

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Kvetner, thank you for your heartening and interesting reply which gives me some hope in flying a drone.
My style of flying doesn’t involve much height at all, perhaps no higher than a low rise in most cases as my shots would be for more artistic style that a traditional camera crane or camera slider would do, if you follow me.
Cheers mate!

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I’ve just bought the mini 2 drone for the purpose of filming the lovely church building and the canals and buildings and scenery in my area. As long as you don’t fly over a crowd ( a crowd is classed as a group of people that would find it difficult to be able to get out of the drones way should it becoming towards them)

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The DJI Mini 2 is your friend - legally fly it almost anywhere and far more portable than a video crane.
Land owner permission for take off and landing is probably the biggest issue but so many churches would appreciate some photos/video of the roof condition - I’m sure a little “deal” could be arranged :wink: :wink: :thinking: :grin:
Certainly no need to be disheartened :+1: :+1: :+1:


I’ve yet to find a vicar who doesn’t want some photos for the parish newsletter ;o)


Or you could ask the ‘big man’? :smile:


Or tell the frocks he told you it was ok


That’s the sort of thing I shall be doing, Stevio. I love the history here in Yorkshire. Many thanks for your advice.

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Haha, I make you right! Cheers! :wink:



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I presume you are now registered with the CAA to get your operator ID at £9 a year, if you have not done so the CAA website also gas a test that you can take which is free and lasts for 5 years called the flyer ID, I did not need to take it but feel that anything you can learn is beneficial to your flying experience and a benefit to your safe flying. Yes lots to learn. For example if a site owner will not permit take off and landing on thier land, they still cannot technically stop you from flying over, hovering there coukd be classed as breaking privacy though. Obviously you still need to be careful when people or crowds could be present and at the moment taking off and landing away from your home is banned due to current lock down rules and could land you excuse the pun with a large fine!


I only have the Mini 2 drone so I only technically need registration to fly with only the operator ID at £9 a year, that said I would recommend taking the flyer ID test lasting 5 years as it is free and full of valuable legal and safety advice, it may also help you prevent accidents or brushes with the law in the first place. It coukd also help with getting insurance.

Enough said