Elan Drone Policy

Here at Elan, we want everybody to enjoy the wonderful scenery, this does however mean adhering to a few regulations and advisories, when using Drones, put in place by the Civil Aviation Authority and ourselves to protect not only the Public but also the Dams and associated structures along with our Wildlife.

In order to fly any Drone anywhere within the Elan Valley Estate, all operators must:

  • Have an Operator ID, which must be labelled on your drone or model aircraft
  • Drones above 250g require a flyer ID
  • Always keep your drone in direct line of sight
  • Remember to stay below 400ft/120m
  • Observe your drone at all times – stay 150ft/50m away from people, property & structures (including dams, bridges & buildings)
  • For more information, visit: https://register-drones.caa.co.uk/drone-code

Commercial operators must complete an Application for Licence (Drones) to access Welsh Water estate form and send it to statutory.maintenance@dwrcymru.com.

The RAF are cleared to use parts of Mid Wales, including the Elan & Claerwen valleys, for low-level flight training. These timetables can be found on www.gov.uk website under LFA7(T), outside of these times fast jets can operate to 76m. Restrictions on airspace can be found by using Sky Demon.


Bird Nesting Season

March – September; during this time many activities are not permitted to protect nesting birds from disturbance and their nests from destruction or damage (which is a criminal offence), here at Elan this extends to our rocks and cliff faces. We ask that these areas along with woodland, hedgerows and open moorland are avoided at this time to minimise any disturbance to nesting birds - some of which are quite rare.

Avoid woodland, forestry & hedgerow areas.

Do not fly close to rocky outcrops or cliff edges.

Leave nest sites well alone, disturbance could mean eggs become abandoned.


The Civil Aviation Authority and Air Navigation Order requires all Drone operators to adhere to the Drone Code

Don’t fly near airports or airfields

Remember to stay below 400ft / 120m

Observe your drone at all times – stay 150ft / 50m away from people and property

Never fly near aircraft

Enjoy responsibly


Ignoring these guidelines can lead to prosecution from the CAA and being reported to the police; endangering an aircraft can lead to 5 years imprisonment.


We have already had multiple instances of Drones flying too close to Dams, resulting in the loss of the Drones.

Our dam safety team work hard all year to ensure the integrity of our dams and their security which could be compromised by low flying drones.


If you have any further questions about Drone operation in the Elan Valley please enquire at our information desk, call 01597 810880 or email elanrangers@dwrcymru.com.

This guidance was put together by Dwr Cymru Welsh Water with advice and guidance from the Ministry of Defence and the Civil Aviation Authority.