Council explains its use of drones over people’s homes

Wealden District Council has explained why it uses drones
Wealden District Council has explained why it uses drones

Wealden District Council has explained why it uses drones to fly above people’s homes in planning enforcement.

The Daily Telegraph newspaper claimed the authority uses the devices to “stop staff being attacked by angry homeowners” while investigating planning disputes.

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But Wealden council says it only ever uses drones to scope out a site with full permission of the landowner and their neighbours.

A spokesperson said, “We are able to use drones for investigating dangerous structures, planning enforcement, fraud, planning applications and for promotional videos.

“With regard to enforcement, it helps us to plan visits and safely identify what is on a site where access is being obstructed. It is important to note here that in these cases, permission to fly the drone is sought from the adjoining landowner. At no time are we accessing land or flying in airspace without the appropriate permission.

“In terms of planning applications, we only ever use drones to scope out a site with full permission of the landowner submitting the application. Our use of drones is controlled by an Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Policy which has been agreed by the Council.”