News and photography in Bristol permit-free
NUJ Bristol Branch Freelance Officer Simon Chapman reports that, following a positive meeting with the Bristol Film Office on the paid-for permits it was demanding for photography in the city, the BFO has now agreed that "media press (news) film and photography crews are not required to apply for permission to film. Stills photographers working with limited equipment (handheld cameras/tripod/portable lighting stand) are also exempt from the licensing process and need not apply for a filming permit."
Simon told the Freelance that while the BFO are exempting all news - including photography, film or video - from its permit scheme, their position is that they require all film crews (except news) to contact their office if they wish to film on council land or property, as "they think it is less easy to define the commercial nature of a film shoot by the level of equipment."
The BFO are considering significantly simplifying the application process for a filming permit for students and low-budget shoots. They hope to introduce this along with a new online permit application form in April, and will keep NUJ Bristol Branch posted. The new - interim - wording on permits is on the BFO website.
The Freelance would like to hear of any developments regarding permits or restrictions on filming or photography in other cities.