CAA & VisitEngland Launch 400ft Britain Drone Photography & Videography Competition

400ft Britain“, drone photography and videography competition recently launched by CAA & VisitEngland, aims to celebrate the beauty of UK’s countryside while promoting safe flying. 

Yesterday, 20 October 2016, the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), in partnership with the UK tourist board, VisitEngland launched a drone photography and videography competition named “400ft Britain”.

400ft Britain is part of the national tourism organisation’s #OMGB marketing campaign, which began in January 2016, to celebrate amazing ‘Oh My Great Britain’ moments and experiences.

It is also aimed at educating people about using drones responsibly.

400ft Britain - Drone Photography & Videography Competition Launched By CAA & VisitEngland - Leeds Castle

Leeds Castle © Dazza Ratchy/VisitEngland


All entries must, in fact, abide by the Dronecode – the CAA’s simple guidelines for safe drone use:

  • Drones must be flown within your line of sight. Pictures should be taken from no higher than 400ft – the highest point the CAA recommends people fly their drone to keep them in sight and reduce the likelihood of a conflict with manned aircraft
  • Drones must be kept at least 50 metres from people and properties and 150 metres from crowds and built up areas
  • Drones cannot be flown near airports, airfields or aircraft

Jonathan Nicholson, Assistant Communications Director at the CAA said:

“We want to encourage people to enjoy using their drones but they must do so safely. By launching 400ft Britain, a competition with the Dronecode embedded in its core, we’re raising awareness of the Code and making it clear to drone users that they must comply with the law and stay safe while piloting a drone.”

400ft Britain - Drone Photography & Videography Competition Launched By CAA & VisitEngland - Harvesting

Harvesting – © Alan Proto/VisitEngland


The competition, which is also supported by NATS (National Air Traffic Services), Maplin ElectronicsMAG (Manchester Airport Group), Heathrow Airport, Balpa (British Airline Pilots’ Association), and Phantom Flight School runs until 31 January 2017.

To enter, simply upload your photo to Twitter or Instagram, or your video to YouTube using the hashtag #400ftbritain.

400ft Britain - Drone Photography & Videography Competition Launched By CAA & VisitEngland - Balcombe Viaduct, Mid Sussex

Balcombe Viaduct, Mid Sussex – © Tim Browne/VisitEngland


Entries will be hosted at throughout the course of the competition, with winners picked in February 2017, and an exhibition planned for the New Year to showcase the very best submissions, before the UK’s first official ‘Drone Photographer and Videographer of the Year’ are both announced.

The winners will be picked by a panel of photography experts and will win an exclusive Phantom Flight School drone holiday.

400ft Britain - Drone Photography & Videography Competition Launched By CAA & VisitEngland - Knowlton Church, Dorset

Knowlton Church, Dorset – © Ben Lovegrove/VisitEngland


Phil Binks, RPAS lead at the air traffic control service NATS, said:

“Drones are an exciting technology and 400ft Britain is a fantastic way of showcasing the beauty of the British countryside and getting across those all important safety messages. With the number of drone incidents on the rise it’s important that people understand their legal obligations and fly safe.”

I think that there is great potential in the synergy between drones and tourism, as I have expressed in my post on how drones are changing tourism marketing and in the interview with travel video expert Greg Brand from Travizeo.

I personally think 400ft Britain is a really good initiative, to both support UK tourism marketing efforts through great UGC (User Generated Content) and virality, and to tackle the issue of irresponsible drone flying and promote compliance education in hobbyist flyers. It is also another step forward in promoting a positive public perception of drones.