Where to fly legally? Oxford & Cotswolds


#1

Just about to push the button and order a Mavic 2 … but I cannot work out where I could actually practise my flying skills in the Oxfordshire area. Flying legally and safely is important to me.

By the time I take into account the 50m rule, the CAA airspace restrictions, the Oxford Council (and University) bans on flying in all parks, the National Trust bans, 100 other sources saying where NOT to fly … and a disinclination to get into a fight with a farmer … what is actually left? What spaces can I legally launch from?

I would appreciate some thoughts from others who fly in this area. Right now I can’t think of anywhere I can go and practise — and a drone doesn’t seem like a good investment if it will only lead to a choice between frustration and illegality :slight_smile:


#2

https://greyarro.ws/t/flight-restriction-zone-maps/6564/15

Have a look at the link on here, may be of some use, and maybe not lol

Also look at the members map


#3

I’d highly recommend joining a local BMFA flying club which could lead to new friends with local knowledge of good and safe flying areas.


#4

Our local Police have just made an appeal in the newspaper for permission from any local farmers for any spare space/land to allow them to take off & practice their drone flying.
Don’t forget, the council, the heritage bods and all the other non governmental bodies do not have any legal powers to stop you flying over their land or property. Rural churches are a good spot, there’s not many people visit them and they can make a good practice point for photography in different light and seasons.
At the end of the day, if you are flying legally, only the CAA have the power.


#5

This is the big problem isn’t it. @Brian, Which local police? That is a nice idea.
We just want somewhere where we can fly without looking over our shoulder. It’s a distraction.


#6

Sorry. I see where your from.


#7

There is a place down south, called “Kciwtag”, has plenty of space !.
Sorry about my dyslexia.


#8

Whereabouts are you? I’m in South Oxfordshire and do ok. The Ridgeway is great, Culham lock, Goring and so on. Happy to help out if I can.


#9

@leeheyes: That’s very helpful - thanks. First I need just the confidence that I will be able to find places to legally fly this thing if I get it – then if I go ahead, I’ll need to find some good practice areas and may well be back in touch. In particular I will need a nice open field (scenery doesn’t matter much) where I can just practice flying.

I am based in Oxford. Is there a particular part of the Ridgeway that works for this kind of thing? I would be concerned about launching from the main tracks as they do get quite a lot of walkers. Culham Lock looks like a nice place to fly. Do you just walk out along the towpath until you get away from buildings?


#10

That’s the beauty of the Mavics. I was down in the Cotswolds recently and just pulled over into a lay-by and flew. The roads were quiet enough and the lay-by was deserted and away from the main road enough for me to get her in the air and fly over open fields.
I live near Selby Abbey, very congested with houses etc, but take off from the nearby river bank early on a Sunday morning when it’s deserted and ‘bingo’ no problem. See pic.
I was staying at Market Bosworth and a quick chat with the hotel manager and he let me take off from the hotel grounds and had a load of flights over ‘Bosworth Battlefield’ and the surrounding area. See pic of the hotel.
When you really look, there are thousands of places to take off from.
When the weather improves, I’m going to film a Church at Sherburn-in-Elmet it’s surrounded by houses and looks, on first glance, impossible to film, but a little ways down the hill is a small road which has a lay-by, only used by dog walkers as it leads to a dead end. This will be my take off point


#11

I tend to go around East Hendred on the Ridgeway. Sometimes I may have to wait a few minutes before taking off for people to pass. At Culham yes, just slightly along the tow path and you’re fine, or a bit further along towards the weir.