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  • As well as a photographer based with my feet firmly on the ground, I'm also a CAA qualified drone operator flying professional drones which means we can also get amazing images from the air. Drone aerial filming and photography is very much a developing technology which means there is new kit coming onto the market every week. Since we started flying five years ago specialist drone cameras are getting smaller while their capabilities are getting bigger, drone gimbals are getting lighter and remote control systems more sophisticated, making flying safer and more practical. Trigger Air is based in West Sussex but travel throughout the UK for clients who include the BBC, 7A Films, RIBA, Avanti Media and Channel 4. 

    If you have any questions about how we might be able to provide that added production value to your next project, or you may need our inspection services, feel free to get in touch, we're more than happy to have a chat.

    Call: 07446 950620

  • Discovering the Past

    Treasure dating back to the 14th century has been discovered by archaeologists working on a £70million development site in Norwich. A medieval Augustian friary has revealed human remains, pottery, coins, oyster shells and painted glass amongst findings uncovered by archaeologists, who began the excavation in May 2015, at the St Anne’s Quarter site.

    Orbit Homes is developing the site and appointed Norwich Property Services (NPS) Archaeology to ensure finds are recorded and preserved. In the last days of the dig Trigger Air was commissioned by NPS to take aerial photographs of the site which is situated in the centre of Norwich. As this is a 'congested area' flying drones is more strictly regulated and additional safety measures have to be considered. The international airport is also located nearby and so flight clearance was gained from air traffic control before take off. Located beside the river the site is a considerable size and will eventually contain 400 new homes.

    Trigger Air are based on the Norfolk Suffolk border in East Anglia and fly drones for aerial filming and photography throughout the UK.

  • Not Your Average Vegetable Plot

    Last year I filmed some aerial video for Lord & Lady Tollemache of Helmingham Hall in Suffolk. This was purely speculative and I provided an edited video that could be used in their marketing, if they liked it. In return I had the privelage of flying our drones and filming at a stunning location which has been their family home for 600 years.

    This week I had a phone call from London publishers Little Brown that had seen a still photo taken from the video and wanted to use it in a new book called 'private gardens' and it was urgent, of course. Unfortunately taking a still image from a video is not high enough quality to reproduce in print at a reasonable size, but after a hasty call to Helmingham Hall I was given permission to fly the drone and re-shoot some high resolution photographs later the same day.

    It had been cloudy all afternoon and driving to the location in the early evening I was still doubtful that it was going to improve, the last thing I wanted was a flat image, but as I waited the evening sun finally appeared beneath the remaining clouds and a glowing light stretched across the walled gardens to the moated red brick hall. The scent of roses in full bloom and as absolute silence filled the air, I couldn't have asked for anything better.

  • A Drone Pilots Guide have recently published this great piece of information called The Drone Pilots Guide. If you're new to flying UAV's it's well worth a read.

    1. Intro
    2. What are Quadcopters?
    3. Meteorology
    4. Flying in Different Conditions
    5. Laws of the Air
    6. No Fly Zones
    7. Aeronautical Charts
    8. Aircraft Knowledge
    9. FPV Information
    10. Flight Safety
    11. Pre and Post Flight Procedures
    12. Drone Flight Exercises
    13. Drone Flight Assessment

    Introduction to the Drone Pilots Guide

    The aim of this guide is to provide the information that a newcomer to the quadcopter flying requires to progress to being a knowledgeable, legal, safe and competent pilot.  It is intended to be used as a handbook – so you can dip in and out at leisure and refer back to it later as needed.  A flight training guide is provided – but before rushing to that you should dip your toes in some of the other sections.  Many pilots have, on their first attempt, seen their quadcopters take-off and fly away, never to be found. Spending a bit of time with the manual and this handbook should help you avoid any such disasters!

  • Solitude - The Movie

    On the very rare occasion I travel with commuters on the early train to London I can hardly restrain my smug delight that I'm not the owner of a shagged out grey suit. Who on earth thought it was a great idea to spend at least three hours a day on a train struggling to stay conscious at work before having another bad nights sleep and getting up to do it all over again the next morning. These super humans have my respect but I wouldn't vote for them. Who in their right mind would select this option as a life choice. Most of us need a good eight hours under the duvet and a balanced work schedule but for some this should mean getting a smaller mortgage and running a cheaper car.

    Fortunately flying drones or UAV's allows a greater degree of what can be described as relaxed attire and flexible hours. A fetching fluorescent vest is sported regularly and so I could easily be mistaken for a dustman or officious car park attendant, nothing wrong in that. Occasionally a hard hat and building site regulation boots are required to keep pace with health and safety but more often than not the decision is based on whether it's going to be hot or cold. A glance at the met the night before while doing final pre deployment checks and you're sorted. The main issue is often whether to don the attractive thermals and maintain a degree of body heat and comfort whilst standing in the bitter cold of a Cambridgeshire field or whether this might lead to an uncomfortable situation later in the day when under pressure from a sudden change in weather conditions the assembled crew watch you attempt to land 10kg of dancing multicopter in a force 4. It can be a tricky decision.

    And so it was a pleasant surprise today that despite having to drag my feeble body from the security and warmth of a comfortable duvet at the ungodly hour of 3:15am, way before the first train to London, it was not cold. The thermals could stay snug in their drawer, the fingerless gloves likewise. Based near to the Suffolk Norfolk border in East Anglia today we were travelling down the A12 via Colchester to set up some aerial filming shots in Essex for director Neil Horsman, who is working on a short film called Solitude. We arrived just after dawn and it was spectacular, the orange sun and blue tinted sky reflected in the estuary high tide with mist draped over the twisting mud flats. Now that's worth getting up for.

  • New CAA Exemption for Flying SUA with FPV

    First Person View flying is the ability to control a radio controlled aircraft, drone or fixed wing, from a “pilot’s eye” perspective through the use of an on-board camera and ground-based receiving and viewing equipment. The viewing equipment is normally a set of video goggles. The new CAA regulations now allow the pilot in charge of the SUA to use FPV up to 1000ft providing a competent observer maintains direct unaided visual contact with the SUA and the take-off mass of the SUA does not exceed 3.5kg including batteries or fuel. If you're flying commercially for aerial work you're still limited by your own personal CAA permissions which may be the standard 400ft AGL.

    Exemption E4049

  • Aerial Filming with the BBC

    Flying a drone safely is about practise and preparation but on the day it's really helpful if the gods are on your side and a certain degree of planet alignment is also available. This time we've been out again filming for the BBC for a program to be aired on 11th May 2015, BBC 1, titled 'VE Day: The First Days of Peace, Rebuilding the Countryside'.

    Shot in April, when the weather can be unpredictable at it's best our first location was just south of Bottisham. With Cambridge Airport only 4 miles to our west and the busy A14 only 1 mile to our East we rendevouzed in an exposed farmers field at the end of a strip of woodland. A stiff Cambridgeshire breeze was blowing as we were briefed by BBC director Paul Baker together with award winning BBC cameraman Martin Giles and presenter Ben Robinson. It was our job to capture the scale and location of this oddly located woodland in the surrounding open countryside. With thousands of motorists passing nearby every day all but a few must be oblivious to the historic role associated with this peaceful landscape. From the ground it simply appears as mature woodland where it provides shelter for breeding pheasants but old aerial images brought along by Ben reveal a more turbulent past.

    As we were operating near to an Air Traffic Zone I'd been in touch with the Control Tower at Cambridge Airport to get clearance for our flights. So as light aircraft buzzed overhead on route to the nearby landing strip across the fields and chill gusts of wind caught us side on we prepped the drone. We were flying the Aeronavics X4 fitted with the Z15 gimbal and a GH3 Lumix camera, this multirotor is able to cope with winds up to 25mph and still produces super smooth video in flight, the trickiest part can be landing in gusty conditions! A quick call again to the local ATC, check the skies and the wind and the light, all clear, and we were up in the air, lining up our shots of Ben as he walked out of the woods. Then up for the reveal shot flying low over the trees as they stretch into the distance towards the traffic on the A14.

    It's only from the sky you can appreciate the scale of this unusual strip of woodland set in open landscape 1,470 yards in length and fifty yards wide with concrete tracks that wind their way around this precise rectangle. The mature woodland has replaced a steel meshed Summerfield Track runway built by the American Air Force in 1943 for the 361st Fighter Group equipped with P-47 Thunderbolts and P-51 Mustangs and renamed AAF Station F-374. Looking down you can now imagine this long thin stretch of countryside as the departure point for many young American airmen during WWII. Setting off in their fighter planes to protect Flying Fortress bombers on raids in Europe.

  • Flying Above Eye Airfield With The Hexacopter Drone

    Perfect conditions on Sunday evening to try the multirotor and GoPro Hero 3 in a big open space. Not far from where I live is an old WWII airfield, the runways are now part used by an industrial park but there is still a long strip of concrete where Lancasters used to take off sixty years ago. The local radio control club has permission to fly on part of it and I was lucky to meet up with the main man by pure chance tonight. The airfield recently had two wind turbines installed and another two are on the way and so I thought I'd test the drone and Go Pro with the photo time lapse feature taking shots every 2 seconds. As I didn't have the fpv set up it was guess work where the camera was exactly pointing but here are a few results.


    Trigger Air is fully qualified and operates within CAA regulations across the UK. If you want to add production value to your next project or require aerial surveys feel free to call for a chat about how our drones (UAV) can help your business.



  • Going to Cornwall

    This is the first decent summer we've had in England for about five years so the opportunity to visit the Cornish countryside was not going to be missed. We're fortunate to have great friends who let us stay in their beautiful country cottage on the north Cornish coast and from that day forward it was glorious weather and stunning sunsets. I'm not a big fan when it comes to shots of the setting sun, we've all seen them before but I just couldn't resist taking a few back with me. 

    This is the sea pool at Bude which is a great place when you want to avoid the jelly fish and sharp rocks hidden by the high tide.