Independent stills photographers / videographers using limited equipment (handheld cameras/tripod/portable lighting stand) are usually exempt from the requirement for film permits, but this may vary depending on the nature of the location, i.e, privately owned areas, etc. or pariticular location / juristiction.

Unless a larger scale shoot is scheduled with more equipment / crew, the above applies to most of the work Jaybee Productions offers concerning public areas.

Legal restrictions on photography

In the United Kingdom there are no laws forbidding photography of private property from a public place.

Photography on private land is not restricted if the landowner has given permission. However, landowners are permitted to impose any conditions they wish upon entry to a property, including forbidding or restricting photography.

Two public locations in the UK, Trafalgar Square and Parliament Square, have a specific provision against photography for commercial purposes without the written permission of the Mayor, or the Squares’ Management Team and paying a fee, and permission is needed to photograph or film for commercial purposes in the Royal Parks.



Whilst there is no law preventing anyone filming on public streets, it is an offence to cause an obstruction or to place materials on the highway without appropriate permission.

The Bristol Film Office permit process ensures relevant liaison with the police and highways are made on your behalf and confirms there is nothing planned which could disrupt the shoot. You will be issued an email detailing which streets are covered.

You should be aware that some areas that seem like public streets are actually privately owned or managed. There are a number of other agencies that look after some of Bristol’s public areas such as Millennium Square, Cabot Circus and Broadmead. There are also some residential streets which are privately managed such as the Royal York Crescent in Clifton. You will need permission to film in any of these locations and you will usually be charged a fee. [bold emphasis added]


Aerial Filming

Aerial Photography is a more involved subject with differing requirements.

Generally speaking, a commercial operator holding current CAA PfCO permissions and relevant insurance can operate in congested areas within the limits of their granted permissions.

The considerations concerning permissable operations are; permission from the landowner for a suitable take-off/landing area; pre-surveys, risk assesments; and safety considierations.

Where the landowner is a local council, a permit will likely be required. This information will be determined as part of an inital feasibility study.

More info here: Aerial Production Process.

Updated: 6th March 2018 @ 15:51 GMT