Lapwing Drone Photography


How much does it cost?

Costs depend on many variable factors in order to carry out a client's brief. Simple sites in open country are relatively straightforward to plan and execute, tighter sites in built up areas can require considerable planning, although the flight time for images would be fairly similar. Why not contact me to discuss your requirements and let me tailor a quote for you.

Why Inspection and not survey?

Drone photography should be viewed by a relevant professional surveyor when an accurate or critical survey is required. A full survey requires measuring and evaluating with a degree of professional skill and judgement.  Video or still photography by a drone is an initial inspection, taking a visual record of the condition of a structure.  Professional assessment of the images is another task and is best carried out by a Chartered Building Surveyor or an Architect, or a trade such as a roofing contractor.  I am happy to liaise with other professionals to give them the imagery that they require.

Why not use 'GoogleEarth'?

Publicly available imaging is not of sufficient detail to be of use in inspecting a building. It is very a low resolution to avoid privacy issues.

Why not use my friend with a drone?

I carry £2m public liability insurance which no hobby cover will provide. In addition if you offer payment to use images obtained by a drone for 'commercial gain' it is illegal to use a non CAA approved pilot. It is known that the CAA check sites such as 'YouTube' to see if illegal images are displayed.

Weather issues

Drones cannot operate in winds over 20mph and in rain. Whilst this may seem unduly limiting it is worth bearing in mind that the purpose of the inspection or photoshoot is to obtain high quality images, this is difficult if the camera is rocking in wind or has moisture on the lens. We will monitor the weather on the approach to an appointment and should the weather look unsuitable we will rearrange. Lapwing Drone Photography cannot be held responsible for any consequential losses should a cancellation occur due to inclement weather. With events such as weddings that cannot be rearranged there would obviously be no charge if we are unable to perform our side of the contract.

Are there places you cannot fly?

There are strict laws regarding drone operations. There is a 50m separation rule between the drone and any person/property 'not under the operator's control', which means that anyone within the 50m zone must take instruction from the drone operator. Most risks can be controlled or managed out, but there are situations where it is impossible to fly legally. Lapwing Drone Photography can advise on other options or partner with other organisations to provide the service you require. The drone is also a highly sophisticated piece of equipment and relies on data links between controller and machine. Sometimes the presence of too many Wi-Fi signals, or the presence of a 3G mobile phone transmitter might make flying impossible. Generally densely populated areas can be difficult especially if they involve close proximity to residential properties. Please see to see a simplified view of the legal framework I must operate within.


I hold cover compliant with the Civil Aviation Authority requirements. The cover is underwritten by Hiscox for £2 million Public Liability Insurance.
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