The Aerial Academy offers flight training and assessments to people across the country considering providing commercial drone services.
Commercial operation of a drone of any size in UK airspace requires registration with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and Permission for Commercial Operation (PfCO; previously known as Permission for Aerial Work).
“There are now several routes to achieve your permission for commercial operation,” explains Norfolk-based founding director Elliott Corke. “It doesn't matter how small the drone is, there are no exceptions to the requirement for a PfCO.
“We can offer one of the cheapest routes to a drone pilot qualification approved by the CAA. As a result, we can run a full programme of flight training and qualifications.
“Flight assessments need to be completed with one of CAA’s approved National Qualified Entities (NQE).
“We tailor our drone pilot training to the individual, so whether you are new to flying or moving to a new aircraft type we can help. We can also help you with basic setup and maintenance.”
A maximum of two trainees are placed on each course and one-to-one training can also be arranged.
Qualification courses start at £950+VAT and courses can be tailored for companies wishing to train multiple pilots to operate under the same permission.
A CAA approved trainer and assessor, Elliott also runs HexCam, a drone training and filming company, which is a member of ARPAS-UK – the professional trade association for Remotely Piloted Aircraft and Systems in the UK. It provides various services to people across the country, such as still aerial photos, panoramas, 4K and HD aerial video, and can now carry out 3D photogrammetry.
“HexCam has been operating commercially since early 2012 and we provide drone aerial photography and filming as well as supplying equipment and drone pilots,” explains Elliott.