Flying drones in the North York Moors

The increase in drone ownership in recent years has led to a number of concerns being raised about their use in the North York Moors. Individuals wishing to operate drones within National Park boundary are reminded of the following:
  • Drone operators must have permission from the owner of the land where a drone takes-off and lands.
  • The National Park Authority owns less than 1% of the North York Moors, with some 80% in private ownership. We are therefore unable to grant permission for take-off and landing a drone in more than 99% of the National Park.
  • The National Park Authority will not grant permission to amateur operators for drone flight from its land for the following reasons (professional drone operators please see below):
    1. In the event of an accident causing damage to property or injury to people, the operator of the drone will be liable to pay compensation. Amateur operators generally have not received professional training, are not registered with the Civil Aviation Authority and do not have appropriate insurance, should this happen.
    2. The presence of drones can have a negative impact on the sense of remoteness and tranquillity of the North York Moors.
    3. Areas of land owned by the National Park Authority, including its car parks and National Park Centres, are busy, dynamic environments and are therefore not suitable (and potentially illegal) sites for the take-off and landing of drones.
  • It is against the law to fly your drone within the restricted zone surrounding an airfield boundary without permission. This therefore makes the area surrounding the Sutton Bank National Park Centre and Kilburn White Horse, unsuitable and illegal sites for the unauthorised operation of drones. See for more information.
  • According to the Civil Aviation Authority’s Drone Code, drones must be flown no higher than 400 feet (120 metres) above ground level and must be kept at least 150ft (50 metres) away from people and private property.
  • You can read the Civil Aviation Authority’s Drone Code
  • You can access a useful map of no fly zones and areas of High Intensity Radio Transmission.
Commercial filming by professional drone operators
  • The National Park Authority may, under some circumstances, grant permission for the take-off and landing of drones from areas of land in its ownership when there is sufficient reason to do so.
  • Permission will only be granted to professional operators who can provide proof of CAA registration and appropriate insurance.
  • Permission will only be granted to operators working with recognised production companies.
  • Whilst on-site, operators must be able to demonstrate proof of permission from a member of National Park Authority staff.
  • Please contact the National Park Authority at least 21 days prior to your request to film using a drone.
  • Please visit our filming page for more information about filming in the National park and areas of land in the Authority’s ownership.
  • All requests to take-off and land a drone for the purpose of commercial filming, along with proof or professional registration and appropriate insurance, should be sent to
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