Legality question

My missus works for the local council, and as I’m preparing to take a PfCO course they’ve asked me to take aerial photos of projects they have do. These have all been in parks so far, but a recent request is for a town centre shoot.

The council are clearing the area of general public and I’ll be taking aerial shots of their new electric vehicles.

Given I have permission, and am not receiving payment - can I do this?

There will be buildings nearby, but are all owned by the council.


Their property, their permission, no consideration, (great practice for when you have PfCO) … I see no problem.

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You are fine. I am not sure they are! As they may be gaining financially by not paying and may be using the footage/for financial gain, so a Pfco may need to be in place, not necessarily yours. Plus there’s the consideration of insurance have they you got it, have they got it.

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Sounds like a great boost for your flying CV !.
If it were me ,I would not give it a second thought, go for it !.
But, certainly look at the Insurance first !

Good point by @stevesb about the commercial purpose of the flight is not just the whether the pilot is paid. However, one of the ‘non-commercials’ examples used by CAA is local authority own staff member flying their own drone for there own needs. a a local authority is classes as non profit and you are ‘volunteering for them’ I would suggest not commercial.

Agree about checking whose public liability insurance is covering, as Local Authorities normally require £10 million in any procurement tenders, regardless of the service being provided. Again, if pilot is classed as volunteer for the council, then this is covered by council insurance, but just need to make sure that includes UAV flights.

I would also expect them to want a full risk assessment, the council I worked for, until recently, even required groups doing beach cleans to have a risk assessment and insurance.

Major part of the PfCO course is flight planning and risk assessments is a key element. @suffolkfox I can send you my generic flight risk assessment if you would like, and site survey and site specific risk assessment templates.


Very good advice from everyone, thank you.

@stevesb, that would be very kind, thank you.

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@suffolkfox was that to me re forms.

The “gain” here falls into the same category as my mates request of me regards filming his golf club.

The CAA’s answer to me was it’s fine just follow the drone code in respect of other aspects. I had specifically mentioned that i wouldnt be gaining but that the club could through use of images on their website, ads or brochures.

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I would be interested in these as well :slight_smile: