News and Information

 

Flying drones and model aircraft in the UK

Registration opens 5 November 2019

URL: https://register-drones.caa.co.uk/ 

 

The new UK requirements for flying or being responsible for drones and model aircraft will become law from 30 November 2019. You can register here from 5 November 2019.

 

An important update on UK Regulations for Model Flyers

                                                                        

                                                                                22nd October 2019

The CAA have just published the following update: https://www.caa.co.uk/Consumers/Unmanned-aircraft/Our-role/Drone-and-model-aircraft-registration/ which is provided in full below:
 
The UK’s new Drone and Model Aircraft Registration and Education Scheme will go live on 5 November 2019 (please note that you cannot register before this date). There will be two elements to the online system. Anyone responsible for a drone or unmanned aircraft (including model aircraft) weighing between 250g and 20kg will need to register as an operator.  The cost for this will be £9 renewable annually. Anyone flying a drone or unmanned aircraft (including model aircraft) weighing between 250g and 20kg will need to take and pass an online education package. This is free and renewable every three years. Both of these requirements become law on 30 November 2019. From 5 November 2019 the system will be available at Register-drones.caa.co.uk 
 
For holders of current CAA permissions or exemptions for drone operations (e.g. such as the permission related to commercial operations as required in ANO article 94(5)) and model flyers holding an achievement certificate issued by a UK model aircraft association with a CAA reviewed achievement scheme:
 
Remote pilots flying in accordance with a permission, exemption or operational authorisation (e.g. such as the permission related to commercial operations as required in ANO article 94(5)) that has been issued to a named UAS operator by the CAA will be exempt from having to undertake the online education training and test. Similarly, where a UK model aircraft association already has an established and CAA reviewed ‘competency scheme’, members who hold an appropriate achievement certificate or award (such as the BMFA ‘A’ certificate) will also be exempt from having to undertake the online education training and test. Any operators who are not covered under the conditions of a permission/exemption or do not hold a recognised association competency will need to complete the free online course. To allow operators to demonstrate competence if challenged (for example by the police) the CAA will be issuing a formal exemption that can be used alongside existing permissions / achievements and any other relevant documents.  This exemption will be in place until 30 June 2020, when new regulations are expected.  We will be working with stakeholders in 2020 to put these into place.
 
For members of ARPAS-UK, British Model Flying Association (BMFA), Scottish Aeromodellers’ Association (SAA), Large Model Association (LMA) and FPV UK
Members will not need to register as an operator with the CAA system if they are a current member of these associations. With permission [of individual members], the associations will collect the registration fee from members directly and supply their data to the CAA. This will take place initially by 31 January 2020 and an exemption from the need to register will be put in place by 30 November to cover association members until then. The associations will issue further detailed guidance to their members in due course. 
 
Please see 
for further details.
 
Control line model aircraft flying
The CAA will be issuing an exemption meaning those flying control line model aircraft will not need to comply with the registration or education regulations.
 
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Please read this update on talks with the CAA HERE

New Important Information regarding all UK Flying

The Council urge everyone to look at both of these documents and act accordingly, this is important for the future of Model Flying in the UK

UK Model Flying under threat   Association Statement

 

Important information on CAA Drone Registration

This scheme will affect all model flyers in the UK including the members of the four recognised associations {SAA, LMA, BMFA and FPVUK } and all recreational and commercial drone operators.

PLEASE READ AND RESPOND TO THE CONSULTATION full details here

 

RENEWED EXEMPTION FOR FLYING ABOVE 400ft FOR FIXED WING AND FPV TO 1000ft.

 

Here are the files explaining the renewed exemption for FPV  to 1000ft and Fixed Wing flying above 400ft.

 

    DFT PUBLISHES AMENDMENTS TO THE AIR NAVIGATION ORDER. 20/2/2019

The Department for Transport (DfT) yesterday published further amendments to the Air Navigation Order which impact on all users of Small Unmanned Aircraft, including the model flying community.  https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-drone-safety-partnership-with-business-launched-as-government-sets-out-plans-to-limit-drone-misuse

Further details of the amendments can be found in CAP1763 (as the CAA have the unenviable task of implementing the legislation).  You can read CAP1763 here: http://publicapps.caa.co.uk/docs/33/CAP1763%20New%20UAS%20guidance.pdf

Regrettably, the DfT have put us somewhat on the ‘back foot’ with this due to the speed with which they have introduced the amendment which also includes elements which they had not alerted us to. 

 

The changes have been expedited in reaction to incidents involving small unmanned aircraft at Gatwick and Heathrow in the last couple of months. We have reported previously on the creation of flight restriction zones around protected aerodromes, the concept of which was introduced in the Government Response to the 2018 Consultation on Drones published earlier this year and these zones will come into effect from 13th March 2019.  A useful interactive map of the UK has been created by NATS showing the protected aerodromes with the restriction zones superimposed.  See https://dronesafe.uk/restrictions/ for further details.

 

CAP1763 states that ‘the flight restriction zone is active at all times and applies to all small unmanned aircraft of any mass (even very small ‘toys’)’.  This was a surprising development which would in theory even extend to paper aeroplanes.

 

If you wish to fly an unmanned aircraft within these restriction zones, then permission will have to be obtained from air traffic control at the aerodrome.  The CAA expect such permissions to be based on a ‘constructive dialogue between the modellers/model clubs and the relevant aerodrome’ and formalised in a letter of agreement/memorandum of understanding.

One slight benefit included in this ANO update is that the existing restriction on flying unmanned aircraft over 7kg below 400ft in controlled airspace has now been removed, as the new restrictions apply to all unmanned aircraft up to 20Kg and maintain the 400ft limit for all unmanned aircraft.

 

We are seeking clarification and answers to a number of questions we have posed to the DfT and CAA on behalf of our members.  We hope to receive answers this week and will publish further updates and clarification in due course.