There appears to be a considerable amount of myth and misinformation circulating about the status of the exemptions issued by the CAA including those which recognise BMFA Achievements and exempt members from registering as Operators by the 30th November (and doing it instead as part of their BMFA Membership Renewal). Full details of the CAA exemptions can be found at www.be-lawful.bmfa.org.
Concern has been expressed by some that the exemptions are only effective until June 2020. There is however a very clear rationale for this, because the current arrangements are an interim measure which have been put in place to comply with the UK laws which come into effect on the 30th November.
However, the CAA are committed to working with us to align with the new EU regulations and put in place a permanent Authorisation which sets out and agrees our longer-term arrangements – with effect from June 2020. It is therefore anticipated that the exemptions will become redundant at that point and the existing terms will be incorporated into our Authorisation. In the event that this is not resolved by June, then the CAA will simply re-issue the current exemptions.
Some members have expressed concern that registering with the CAA via the BMFA means that they will not be issued with a CAA Flyer I.D. The simple reason for this is that our members don’t need one! The CAA issue a Flyer I.D. solely to confirm that someone has taken their online test. Members with an existing achievement (including the new Registration Competency Certificate) are exempted from this requirement.
Some members have expressed concern that the Police may not accept BMFA documents. However, this is speculation with no basis in fact. We understand that the Police are being briefed on acceptable forms of documentation this week and all Associations have been asked to provide examples.
What we have arrived at is a very simple way for many of our members to comply with the law. For those with an achievement (including the new Registration Competency Certificate), the only requirement is to pay the additional £9 CAA fee (don’t forget that we succeeded in getting this fee almost halved from the original £16.50 - for the benefit of everyone). We are also in a position to assist those members without an existing Achievement (or in some cases internet access) to comply with the law with the help of their club.
We need the support of our members to make this work. If insufficient numbers utilise the concessions we have secured, then they are perhaps less likely to be available to us in the longer-term solutions we agree with the CAA from June 2020 onwards.
The whole process is very simple whichever route you take, so you can choose to register directly with the CAA or you can choose to register via the BMFA and help strengthen our position in upcoming negotiations.
Following Saturday's AGM, 2020 BMFA fees will remain unchanged from their current level.
Senior - £38
Junior - £17
Family Senior - £38
Family Partner - £25
Family Junior - £13
2020 membership will be available from the 1st of December.
For 2020 we will be introducing a new optional BMFA membership card, this will be a plastic credit card sized card and comes with the option to sign up to BMFA Rewards which gives you the chance to make savings at many UK retailers, restaurants, cinemas, hotels etc. Potentially members can save hundreds each year for the extra cost of just £3.50
CAA RECOGNISED REGISTRATION COMPETENCY CERTIFICATE LAUNCHED. PLEASE READ!
Article 94F of the Air Navigation Order introduces the requirement that from 30th November 2019 all remote pilots of model aircraft or drones (small unmanned aircraft, SUA) with a mass of 250gm or more flown outdoors, including free flight, not to fly the SUA unless the CAA has issued the remote pilot with an acknowledgement of competency valid for the flight.
However the CAA have issued an exemption for BMFA members who hold a Basic Proficiency Certificate, and either A or B Certificates. The CAA will also accept as proof of competency our new BMFA Registration Competency Certificate which has been launched today.
To take the online BMFA Registration Competency Certificate test go to https://rcc.bmfa.uk/rcc
Please note that if you do not hold a BMFA achievement certificate you must either take the CAA online test at https://register-drones.caa.co.uk/ or the BMFA Registration Competency Certificate at https://rcc.bmfa.uk/rcc by 30th November if you intend to fly.
This is a separate requirement to CAA Registration for which BMFA members are exempt until 31st January so you can register when you renew your BMFA membership.
On the BMFA Website ( BMFA.Org ) they have posted articles on the latest position in respect of the EU regulations and also on the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee Report. They include direct links to the documents concerned and may prove interesting reading.
As yet the BMFA have not given any further practical advice on the new Registration Scheme which we await eagerly.
The following information has been sent out by the BMFA today.
Further to our previous update of 11th September (https://bmfa.org/News/News-Page/ArticleID/2610/An-update-on-the-UK-regulations-for-model-flyers-a-bit-of-good-news-at-last ).
There is no real change to the situation as published. All parties are currently awaiting the outcome of the Secretary of State’s deliberations on the matter and there is little we can add until we receive this.
What we can confirm however is that the DRES scheme will not be rolled out on the 1st October (it seems unlikely that it will be rolled out before 14th October at the earliest) and for the time being we would therefore suggest that it remains ‘business as usual’ for our members. We would also encourage members not to rush into registering or taking the test when the DRES is eventually rolled out until we have issued further guidance.
We will update members as soon as we receive further information from the Secretary of State for Transport, the Department for Transport and/or the Civil Aviation Authority.
Tel: 0116 2440028
Fax: 0116 2440645
The Society of Model Aeronautical Engineers Limited
T/A The British Model Flying Association
A company limited by guarantee. Registered in England Number 457067
Registered office Chacksfield House, 31 St Andrew's Road, Leicester, LE2 8RE
We were blessed with a glorious autumn afternoon for the latest rounds in the CDMFC Funfly Competion.
As usual the Skittles Competition produced some outstanding flying from the 8 members taking part. Richard Coles learned the hard way that it is not a good idea to attach the weighty tennis ball to the rear of the model. Most members stuck to the tried and tested method of attaching the ball between the legs of the undercarriage, then using a variety of flight paths, they keenly attacked the target.
There was a choice of Red Skittles which scored 10 points or Clear Skittles scoring 5, and two minutes from wheels off to knock as many down as possible. In truth the pilots had very little choice over the course that the ball took, and as long as they skilfully piloted the correct course, the ball either did its duty or passed cleanly through the maze, Some pilots even tried knocking the skittles over with the model but these were discounted by sharp eyed judges on the sidelines.
In first place, scoring a stunning 70 points after flattening 8 clear and 3 red skittles came Ted. In second place with a score of 55 made up from 4 red skittles and 3 clear skittles came Neil. In third place with 2 red and 4 clear, scoring 40 came David. Fourth place went to Gavin who despite the handicap of only flying for half the allowed time, after his prop became tangled in the Ball string, scored 25 with 2 reds and 1 clear. Fifth place went to Ian G who scored 20 points with 1 red and 2 clear skittles. Sixth place went to a surprisingly out of form James and last scoring place with 1 solitary clear skittle scoring just 5 points, went to Colin. Richard C was sadly to land abruptly before managing to score any points.
The Carrier Deck landing was scored according to the touch down point on the painted carrier deck. As long as the model stopped on the painted target. If it over-ran, no points were allocated. Three attempts were allowed for each pilot and the resulting points added to produce a final score.
12 pilots were lined up to start this competition. There were several tied places in this closely fought round, and points/places were therefore shared instead of any fly offs being held. Points were available for 20, 40, 60, 80 and 100 positions on the deck. No none scored the magic 100 in any round and only one score of 80. This is probably due to the calm wind conditions and smooth deck surface.
In First place with an excellent combined score of 200 points, made up of 80, 60 and 60 came David. In second place with scores of 100 came 3 pilots, Ted, Gavin and Ian G. In equal 5th place came Matthew and Neil both scoring 80 points. In 7th place came James who only managed two successful landings and therefor only scored 60 points. In shared 8th place came Nic and Ian P, both scoring only one landing with 40 points. 10th place was shared by Colin and William neither of who managed to score any points but both came really close and were unlucky. Colin was also hampered by adjustments made earlier to his model, which instead of making it easier to fly made it totally unpredictable and unwilling to slow down.
All in all, it was a very enjoyable afternoons flying, and as the closing round of the championship gets closer, things are hotting up.
AN UPDATE ON THE UK REGULATIONS FOR MODEL FLYERS - A BIT OF GOOD NEWS AT LAST!
I published an update on the BMFA website on 23rd August (https://bmfa.org/News/News-Page/ArticleID/2608/An-update-on-the-UK-regulations-for-model-flyers ) which provided a summary of our position at that time. This was also going to be the basis of my article for the forthcoming issue of the BMFA NEWS.
However, the very next day I received a telephone call to tell me that the new Secretary of State for Transport (the Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP) had picked up the case for us and would ‘be in touch’.
A few days later I received an invitation to attend a meeting with Grant at the Houses of Parliament. This meeting took place on Monday the 9th September and involved me (on behalf of the UK Model Flying Associations), Graham Brown from ARPAS (on behalf of commercial drone operators) and high-level delegations from both the CAA and DfT. The outcome of the meeting was that the CAA and DfT have been tasked to work in collaboration with us urgently to try and find an acceptable way forward.
This is very much work in progress and as such I cannot provide much definitive information at this time. Please monitor the BMFA website and Facebook page for further updates in due course.
However, what I can confirm already is that those who only fly control line aircraft will be exempted from the DRES requirements and I can also confirm that registration numbers can be carried in an easily accessible location (such as within battery compartments) rather than on the exterior of model aircraft. The registration fee is also likely to be subject to a change (for the better). These items are the starting point.
We would therefore encourage members not to rush into registering or taking the test when the DRES is rolled out in the next few weeks, until we have concluded our current round of discussions with the CAA and DfT and issued further guidance to members. For the time being, we would suggest that it remains ‘business as usual’.
Both the CAA and DfT have given a commitment to ‘re-set’ their relationships with the model flying community and work with us in close collaboration from this point forward, a very positive development which we greatly appreciate. It’s perhaps preferable to being inundated with correspondence from our magnificent members and their MP’s! Thanks again to all those members who have supported our relentless campaign so far.
Watch this space!
Dave Phipps CEO
8 of our keenest club members gathered together last Saturday to contest the latest round of the Aerobatics competition. The schedule had been previously published by James to allow the competitors to study the requirements. The manoeuvres were judged by an experienced Club member who allocated points for each movement. The scores were all evenly matched and creditably high.
In first place with an impressive 220 points was Ted. Second came James very closely behind with 216 and only 7 points behind him came David. Fourth place went to Neil with 202, Fifth place to Gavin with 197, Sixth to Philip with 184, Seventh to Matthew with 184 and in 8th place with a still impressive score of 179 points came Ian.
The latest round of the CDMFC Fun Fly Championship took place last Saturday with 10 members taking part. The results were based on the distance from the target that the Tangerine ended up, after being ejected from the flying model. Accuracy was not as much on show as in recent years but the results were:
- 1st place Neil with a distance of 6ft.
- 2nd Place Ted with a distance of 8ft 2 inches.
- 3rd Place James with a distance of 11ft 10 inches.
4th place went to Mathew Barden, 5th to David , 6th to John , 7th to Philip, 8th to Gavin, 9th to Ian and finally with a distance of 56ft and 8 inches came William. Well done everyone, It was great to see 3 Juniors taking part in a fun fly competition.
Good News from the BMFA Nationals Fun Fly. At the Nationals Fun Fly held over the Bank Holiday weekend, Nick Lester gained first place in Class 2. This was a closely fought contest held over 4 rounds and Nick did well to achieve the highest overall score amongst some talented completion. Congratulations Nick!.
Please see the information on the link in respect of the latest information from the BMFA, which will affect us all shortly.
HOUSE OF COMMONS SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY COMMITTEE – COMMERCIAL AND RECREATIONAL DRONE USE INQUIRY – THIRD EVIDENCE SESSION
The Science and Technology Committee holds its third evidence session on its Commercial and recreational drone use in the UK inquiry on Tuesday 9th July.
Watch it online at Parliament TV.
At 9.30 am
- Gemma Alcock, Founder, SkyBound Rescuer
- Professor David Dunn, International Politics, University of Birmingham
- David Phipps, Chief Executive, British Model Flying Association
At 10.30 am
- Baroness Vere of Norbiton, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport, Department for Transport
This is the third and final session of the Committee's inquiry into commercial and recreational drone use in the UK. Themes for the session's first panel include:
- reflecting upon the state of current drone safety education and exploring options and strategies for improving the quality and delivery of this education; and
- addressing ethical concerns—including privacy concerns—that surround the increased availability, and use of, drone technology.
During the second panel, the Committee will question Baroness Vere of Norbiton, Parliamentary Under-Secretary at the Department for Transport. Questioning will cover a range of areas including:
- the current regulatory framework;
- forthcoming regulations;
- risks associated with drones; and
• the opportunities presented by the growing industry.
11 members of the club entered models into this year’s Flying Scale Competition.
The entrants were required to fly a set schedule followed by manoeuvres chosen from a menu that were within the capabilities of themselves, and appropriate for the model being flown. The flights were judged by Richard Pidduck and Roger Everitt chosen from a cast of thousands.
In first place after the scores were added up came Carl, followed extremely closely by James, a margin of only one point separated them. Third came Neil, 4th David, 5th was Colin, 6th was Ian, 7th was Phillip, 8th Mathew, 9th Gavin, who sadly was unable to complete a full flight after an engine failure, 10th was John who also did not complete the flight and in last place came Richard who was also suffering from engine reliability.
The Scale competition was then followed by a Fun Fly round Touch and Go Bang. 10 pilots took part 6 of whom managed to burst the balloon which comprised the Bang part of the competition. In first place came Ted who scored 49, Second place went to Gavin with 47, Third was David with 42, 4th place went to James who scored 38, 5th to Neil with 27 points, 6th place went to Phillip with 24, 7th to William who scored 19, 8th to Ian with 12, 9th to Richard C with 9. Finally came Matthew with 2 points.
On Wednesday 15th May the CDMFC hosted a visit by the Surrey Vintage Vehicle Society. On a glorious summer evening we enjoyed showing our models to 10 visitors from the society who were thoroughly impressed. A report on the visit has been published on the society website https://www.svvs.org/caterham19.shtml , it contains numerous pictures of the club and the models on show.
Two rounds of the Fun Fly competition were held on the warmest day yet of 2019. 10 members of the club contested the Blackjack and Water Carrying rounds which attracted entries from new and old members alike.
First place in Blackjack was claimed by Ted, who scored his total of 21 in the minimum of 3 touch and gos in a time of just 22.44 seconds. Second place was taken by Gavin who scored his 21 points in just 32.97 seconds just ahead of Neil who completed his round in 33.77 seconds.
Once again this year the Water Carrying was combined with a short landing to sort out the old pilots from the bold pilots. Ted triumphed again landing with 34 drips of water remaining in a distance of 3 mtrs. This gave him a score of 28. Neil came second with a total of 24 drips again in a distance of 3 mtrs, thus scoring 18 points. Third place went to Matthew who landed with only 6 drips remaining but right on the spot, which meant that he scored 6 points.
Well done to all those who took part.
The first few competitions of this Season have taken place at the field. There has been an excellent turn out so far with several members new to competitions already making a promising start to the championship.
Here are the top three in each of the rounds so far:
Deadstick Aerobatics. 1st David C and in equal 2nd place were Neil and Shaun. 13 members took part.
Loops and Land. 1st Gavin , 2nd Neil and in 3rd place David C. 13 members took part
Triple Thrash. 1st Gavin, 2nd Ted and in 3rd place Matthew. 9 members took part.
Left is Right. 1st David C, 2nd Phillip and in 3rd place Wayne. 12 members took part.
Please come along and support the Club at the Christmas Club night. If you have been before you will know why it is the one night of the year not to miss out on. If you have not been before, the competition winners throughout the year will receive their certificates and an array of other trophies will be presented. This includes an award to our Pilot of the Year, our Unluckiest Pilot of the Year and the well deserved Brian Gordon Memorial Club Spirit Award.
Our monthly raffle takes on a special Christmas Theme, and our Super Raffle Prize finds a worthy owner. Best of all enjoy the company of your fellow club members and enjoy a fine buffet prepared by the Chairman and Treasurer. Yum Yum.
See you there.
Membership Application Forms for 2019 have now been sent out to all members.
Email is not infallible, and the Secretary sometimes presses an incorrect key, so please
contact RIchard if you are a current member and have not yet got your form.
This year's Annual General Meeting will be held at the South Godstone Sports Club on Monday 15th October at 8pm.
An agenda will be sent by email to all members, together with a copy of the 2017 minutes and some background information to an agenda item. It would be nice to see as many of you there as possible. We try to keep proceedings as brief as possible!. If you cannot make it please send your apologies, you will then receive a mention in the minutes!.
The latest rounds in the 2018 Club Championships were flown recently at the field.
We were fortunate indeed to benefit from the expert eye of Bill Griffiths to judge the Aerobatic manoeuvres of 6 of our members. The winning flight was carried out by Ted who flew the intricate sequence with skill and care. Second came David followed closely in third place by Gavin.
The result of the carrier deck landing competition was also finely balanced. It was won with a very skillful landing (as is his normal practice) by David. Three other members shared the second place, Shaun, Gavin and Ian.