Monthly Archives

June 2018

Holiday Park Design Made Possible By Use of Drone

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An interesting use of drones, is helping to visualise redesigns of holiday and caravan sites. Hovershotz have been commissioned to conduct a number aerial drone photographic surveys of a number of holiday parks in the Lake District and across Cumbria and Lancashire. These images are then fed in to the developers computer system and then a CGI image is produced showing how their existing Park will look once developed.

Here is a before and after image of a caravan site near Carlisle in Cumbria (the before is our drone photograph and the after iks once the CGI has been applied.

caravan park survey by drone Dandy Dinmont Caravan and Camping Site Blackford, Carlisle,Cumbria CA6 4EA aerial photograph lake districtcaravan park survey by drone Dandy Dinmont Caravan and Camping Site Blackford, Carlisle,Cumbria CA6 4EA lake district aerial photography lake district

Here is the original aerial drone photograph

caravan park survey by drone Dandy Dinmont Caravan and Camping Site Blackford, Carlisle,Cumbria CA6 4EA aerial photograph lake district

Here is the computer image showing the new layout

Then the images are merged using cgi

caravan park survey by drone Dandy Dinmont Caravan and Camping Site Blackford, Carlisle,Cumbria CA6 4EA lake district aerial photography lake district

Then the final rendered image is produced from the original drone image combined with the CGI design.

caravan park survey by drone Dandy Dinmont Caravan and Camping Site Blackford, Carlisle,Cumbria CA6 4EA lake district aerial photography lake district

© Hovershotz Aerial Photography Video & Inspections Cumbria and the Lake District

Aerial drone filming in the rain & wet weather with drones in the Lake District

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There’s a saying that the Lakes in the Lake District are there for a reason – because it rains a lot. At Hovershotz we have worked out that if we are lucky we get 100 fine days per year to film with drones in the Lake District. For this reason we have explored many ways of filming in the rain and it’s far more complex than just getting a waterproof drone.

Firstly, every waterproof drone we have examined, the camera (even those listed at 4K), simply just do not cut the mustard when it comes to film quality. The majority of these water proof drone originate for China and quite frankly are rubbish (some cowboy drone operators are attempting to offer professional filming with these cheap Chinese water proof drones but our advice is to stay clear of these cheapskates attempting to palm these off as acceptable for broadcast quality).

Secondly, even though a waterproof drone can fly in the rain, water collects on the lens rendering any captured footage useless. There judst isn’t a drone solution available that is both waterproof and can film in the rain. This becomes a problem when a director or filmmaker needs a drone shot and the weather isn’t suitable for drones.

We have had some limited success in being the only drone operator in the Lake District to have had one of our DJI Inspire 1 drones nanotech coated – meaning it is waterproof and can fly in the rain. Despite being waterproof, we are still limited in how we can film whilst it is raining to prevent moisture on the lens (such as filming in the hover position or flying backwards whilst filming). We are the most experienced drone crew when it comes to operating in inclement weather in the Lake District.

We have spoken to various film crew and cameramen who we have worked with, to see how land based filming gets around this and they tend to use spinning lens filters such as the Spintec RD but sadly non of these fit any drone mounted camera (The Spintec RD deflects rain and snow instantly by spinning a specially produced Tiffen glass filter 3000 times per minute. The spinning glass creates both a centrifugal effect which instantly removes rain drops (and even water splashes) and a vacuum effect which removes the lighter snow flakes which may have not been removed by the centrifugal effect).

In our experience Directors & filmmakers require more than just drone filming backwards or just in hover whilst it’s raining, so our quest continues. The issue is compounded by the fact that the DJI Inspire 2 with X5s is now the defacto standard for professional film making, so our solution needs to be based around this. Thankfully due to the popularity of DJI drones, a company called Tokina manufacture a range of hydrophilic rain dispersion filters which should fit the DJI X5S camera. These hydrophilic rain dispersion filters will finally allow Hovershotz (when coupled to a waterproof drone) the ability to film unrestricted in wet weather when raining.

Hovershotz are about to test hydrophilic rain dispersion filters and if successful will use these with the X5 camera from our DJI Inspire 2 on a waterproof DJI Matrice 210. This will mean the finished footage will all be filmed on the same cinematic grade camera, ensuring consistent footage for perfect results plus it will make editing less of a headache.

In conclusion if you require a aerial drone filming expert in the Lake district, come rain or shine, then Hovershotz are the only choice, as we are the only drone operator with a professional quality waterproof rain resistant drone, camera and lens solution.

Here is an example of Hovershotz working with a film crew whilst operating a drone in the rain in the Lake District

© Hovershotz Aerial Drone Photography and Inspections Cumbria 2018

Aerial drone photograph of world electric waterspeed water speed record vector jaguar coniston world record hovershotz cumbria lake district battery-powered V20E

Hovershotz provide aerial drone filming for new world waters peed record in Cumbria

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Hovershotz, the leading specialist drone filming company in the Lake District are proud to be involved with the Jaguar racing team by providing the aerial drone filming for the new world electric waterspeed record. In May 2018 at Coniston Water Cumbria, Hovershotz integrated with the official Jaguar Land Rover film crew to provide breathtaking drone footage.

The Jaguar Vector Racing V20E craft cleared two legs of the 1km Coniston Water circuit in Cumbria, England, at 88.6mph (142.6kph). It smashed world and national electric speed records, beating the previous electric best of 76.8mph (123.6kph) set 10 years ago.

The powerboat was produced by car manufacturer Jaguar in collaboration with experts from the technology companies Vector and Williams Advanced Engineering. Its YASA electric motors were powered by two 320kg batteries punching 220kW.

© Hovershotz Aerial Drone Photography and Inspections Cumbria 2018


Hovershotz specialise in providing aerial drone filming and photography in the Lake District. We particularly specialise in providing drone filming for film TV & news crews in the Lake District.

hovershotz on location in lake district drone film crew

Providing aerial drone filming & photography in the Lake District for Film Crews in Cumbria

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Hovershotz specialise in providing professional aerial drone filming in the Lake District for film and media companies filming on location. We operate a variety of professional drones including the cinematic grade DJI Inspire 2 with Zenmuse X5S lens. All drones can be packed in tailored backpacks and our drone pilot is an experienced Lake District fell walker who can hike across the Lake District terrain to capture the perfect shot. Hovershotz operate from a rugged self contained off road 4 wheel drive vehicle (unlike some other drone operators who try and operate from a family car), where we can transport both our equipment  and additional film-crew close to the desired filming location. We are able to charge batteries out on location and even view and edit footage from the comfort of our vehicle.

Hovershotz are experienced in working with a variety of TV, news and film crews across the lake District and also providing location scouting across Cumbria.

Here is an example of Hovershotz working on location in the Lake District with a film crew, providing aerial drone filming.

© Hovershotz Aerial Drone Photography and Inspections Cumbria 2018


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Stunning aerial photographs, gathering necessary covert intelligence and receiving your Amazon order the very same day. There is no denying that drones and drone technology are very useful. They can be hugely beneficial to many industries in a number of different ways.

As with anything, however, there is always the risk of technology being misused and abused by those with nefarious intentions. Unfortunately, drones are no different.

Drone technology is now easier to access than ever before and is readily available to the public. This unfortunately also makes it accessible to those with malicious intent.

It is important to be aware of the potential illegal uses of drones. It’s also important to recognise the techniques and equipment which exist to detect and prevent them from being used to cause damage.

Here are some of the top ways in which drones are at risk of being used illegally:

1. Prisons

They may seem secure, but drones have ensured that prisons have now become more accessible than ever. There have been a number of reports of drones being used to smuggle contraband. This includes weapons, phones and drugs into prisons by being flown over the walls of the institution. Possibly even to the prisoners’ windows, like a bizarre delivery service.

In addition, there is a risk that the drones, with advanced tracking and surveillance technology, are mapping and photographing the grounds and surroundings in order to formulate an escape plan.

There is only one prison in Cumbria which is HMP Haverrigg.

2. Terrorism

Perhaps one of the most worrying potential misuses of drones is that of terrorism. Drones are small, light, and can carry loads and items. There is a genuine fear that they could be used by terrorist groups and organisations to drop chemicals, bombs or other weapons into crowded civilian areas. This could cause enormous devastation. This could pose a real threat to the nuclear facility at Sellafield Cumbria.

3. Surveillance

In their infancy, drones were most commonly used by military personnel and government officials to undertake surveillance. There is now a risk that the technology will be used to undertake illegal surveillance. Huge advancements in recording audio and visual content have contributed. There is also the ability to make drones smaller, therefore making them more easy to conceal.

In an attempt to prevent copyright and theft of intellectual property, the CAA guidelines are clear on the fact that drones should not be flown over large crowds, stadiums or people. However, an intrusion of privacy is still very much an issue, and there is always a risk that drones could potentially access sensitive information by infiltrating conferences or meetings.

4. Interference with planes

There have been a number of reports of drones flying too close to commercial and drive aircraft, despite the rules which state that drones must not be flown within five miles of an airport, or above 400 feet unless the consent of air traffic control is obtained.

The consequences of a drone being sucked into the engine of a place are catastrophic and could cause complete engine failure, therefore making this a very real risk and issue for aeroplanes around the world.

5. Risk to emergency services

This may seem an unlikely connection, but Lancashire Fire and Rescue and the Police recently reported drones interfering with firefighting aircraft at the Winter Hill Wild Fire. This is not only an unwanted distraction to first responders, but could also put lives at risk as it makes their job much more difficult.

What is a commercial UAV Pilot?

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A commercial UAV pilot is a term sometimes used to refer to a professional drone operator. UAV stands for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, more commonly called a drone. To carry out work for payment or reward with a drone, a pilot must have approval from the Civil Aviation Authority in the UK. This approval is called a CAA PfCO (permission for commercial operation). Hovershotz Aerial Drone Photography & Video Cumbria hold a CAA PfCO.

If you are looking to hire a commercial UAV pilot, there are some important legal requirements that you should be aware of. Hiring an illegal pilot can land you in serious trouble, and drone laws in the UK are tightening as the use of UAV’s increases.

There are examples of people risking illegal drone hire every day, and it’s really not worth it. It may save you money in the short term, but if anything goes wrong it could be a very expensive mistake. For a business hiring a drone pilot, using a rogue operator could seriously damage a long-standing reputation.

The risk of hiring an illegal drone operator can be compared to hiring a gas fitter who isn’t Corgi registered. One silly mistake could have disastrous consequences. In addition, a person who flies for fun and wants to make some cash with a drone is unlikely to produce the same quality as a professional. If you want something like aerial photographs of a hotel for marketing purposes, would you be happy with poor quality, over-exposed results?

To become a CAA approved commercial UAV pilot, an operator has to study the subject and pass an exam. He must demonstrate good working knowledge of the specific drone he flies, how to assess and mitigate risk and how to fly within the law. Before taking off, an approved commercial UAV pilot will survey the area and take steps to ensure the safety of people and property. He will also have insurance in place in the rare event that something unexpected happens.

To hire a CAA approved commercial drone operator in Cumbria, Lancashire or the Lake District contact Hovershotz


By | UK Drone Legalities | No Comments

Thanks to rapid development of technology, professional drone pilot hire is easy. Hundreds of people have been attracted to this exciting new industry, and affordable equipment means that drone hire costs are falling. Of course price isn’t the only factor in professional drone pilot hire, and there are some important things you need to know.


  • A pilot must have approval from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to operate for payment or reward in the UK. There’s no such thing as a drone licence, and approval comes in the form of a PfCO (Permission For Commercial Operations). Hiring an operator without a PfCO means they are operating illegally, and the consequences for you could be serious. We can confirm that Hovershotz hold a current PfCO


  • There are different types of drones, and not all are suitable for some types of work. DJI are one of the main producers of drones, and models like the Phantom and Inspire are very popular in the UK. Cheaper drones have poor quality cameras and aren’t suitable for commercial work. Professional drone pilot hire should come with equipment up to the required standard. We can confirm that Hovershotz operate a number of different drones, all of which are professional quality and suitable for a variety of uses. Our main drone is a DJI Inspire 2.


  • There are strict rules controlling use of drones in the UK. Drones are still relatively new technology, and legislation is having to catch up and adapt. As well as laws to reduce the risk of accidents, such as keeping a safe distance from crowds, there are laws to protect privacy and nuisance affecting the use of drones. If you want to hire a professional drone pilot to carry out work in a city centre, it can be quite involved. An experienced operator will be able to advise about this type of thing and ensure that flights are carried out safely and within the law. Hovershotz have been operating professionally for 4 years and are members of the industry watchdog ARPAS


The number of professional drone operators for hire in the in Cumbria, Lancashire & the Lake District is increasing, but sadly far more illegal operators are popping up. Asking questions and checking documentation are good ways to ensure you don’t encourage law breaking. Always check that the pilot carries a current PfCO (Permission for Commercial Work) from the CAA and valid insurance.

For peace of mind contact Hovershotz aerial drone photography and filming for a quote

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