UK Photographers Rights

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by alumac, Apr 5, 2009.

  1. alumac macrumors member

    Mar 31, 2009
    Some people from my Uni got into trouble while photographing the Bull Ring (in Birmingham). Have any of you had similar experiences of guards approaching you and asking for a license.

    Apparently if someone tries to force you to delete a photo you have already taken, its considered assault. This page has a PDF of photographers rights in the UK!
  2. Kebabselector macrumors 68030


    May 25, 2007
    Birmingham, UK
    The Bullring is private property so they can enforce any restrictions on photography. There's no licence, just permission required from the Management Office*. As you stated, if they try to delete any images it's common assault. They do have the right to eject you however.

    The Bullring management office I found to be friendly with regards to photography and will issue a pass. I got one to shoot these images, images include before and after shots of the Bullring. Taken from as close as I could get to my original B&W shots.

    *Seems most shopping centres are the same, Mailbox especially. More annoying is the amount of previously owned public space that's sold off by the council and then is classed and not a public right of way.
  3. Padaung macrumors 6502


    Jan 22, 2007
    Yeah, this is quite an issue at the moment with many stories of people being randomly stopped by police in public areas.

    However, it is very clear that you need permission when on private property (ie shopping centre). However, no one, be they a security guard or a policeman has the right to delete photos/remove film from your camera once taken.

    That guide is useful, but unfortunately it hasn't been updated since 2004 and laws (esp. regarding anti-terrorism legislation) have changed since then.
  4. ingouk macrumors newbie

    Feb 5, 2008
    Birmingham UK
    How would it work, if one lives in an apartment inside the mailbox (above the shopping levels), goes down and takes photos inside the mailbox. can the guards still ject one from the mailbox, so that said photographer cant get back into his apartment inside the mailbox?


  5. jw12345678 macrumors member


    Jan 28, 2009
    (As far as the UK is concerned) the only person that can force anyone to delete pictures is a judge. If a policeman or anyone tells you to delete anything then ask to see his court order and refuse. Period. A security guard can ask you to stop taking pictures and leave private property but he needs a court order too to ask you to delete pictures. You can take pictures of private buildings from public property... a road, or path... look for the presence of double yellow lines, for example, to give you evidence that it is a public road, not a private one.
    A policeman can ask you to stop taking pictures, but you don't have too. By all means tell him who you are and why you are taking pictures, but in theory (although increasingly less in practice) Britain is still a free country. Inevitably the new laws relating to terrorism will lead some of the Police to think they have a right to order you to stop. If they try to quote this law, then fine.. ask them on what grounds they believe that your taking pictures could be construed as being of use to terrorists. (Assuming you aren't one of course). The rest is new ground, and we'll see what happens....
  6. ajpl macrumors regular

    Oct 9, 2008
    Only if you live in the past. :eek: We heading towards North Korea at an alarming rate.:mad:


    Not any more.


    Hundreds demonstrate their freedom to photograph

    They were doing that with the old law and despite complaints even by MPs who tried to bring a motion reqesting that police actually learn the laws they are meant to uphold, they brought in even more draconian laws.

    Plus if you take photos in public and aren't assumed to be a terrorist, it's because you are assumed to be a paedophile.
    But only if you have a large professional looking camera, as it's well known terrorists and paedophiles prefer to be conspicuous.
    The irony is, if you want pictures of buildings, locations etc, then 'Street View' in Google is more than adequate to scout out areas as it's much better quality than say Street View is in New York. A fantasic tool for burglars too I'd imagine.
  7. Aqueus macrumors member


    Apr 3, 2009
    the latest with the google car street view vs the people in the UK has been interesting in regards to rights..
  8. FourCandles macrumors 6502a

    Feb 10, 2009
  9. kdum8 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 8, 2006
    Tokyo, Japan
    If anyone has a definitive answer to this given the recent changes in the law I would be very interested to hear it. Are we still allowed to photograph things in public as a right? There seems to be a lot of (understandable) confusion at the moment as to what is, and what isn't legal. Even in the police themselves often don't know.

    If you want to see something unbelievable regarding photography in the UK then check out this video:

    Bear in mind that these guys aren't even police officers (they are CSOs) and that this was taken before the recent anti-terrorist ammendments to the law.

    Although I am living in Japan these days I hope the UK doesn't turn into an Orwellian state before I get back! :eek:
  10. Eraserhead macrumors G4


    Nov 3, 2005
    I think if I was hassled about it it'd be quite funny to point out to a police all the places you do get to take photos without being hassled, like Russia, China, Vietnam and the US.

    Of course exceptions like airports and border areas do apply.

    These rules may be applied sometimes, but we aren't anywhere close to North Korea in terms of rights.

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