- Government forecast is for 900,000 commercial drones to be operative in the UK by 2030, which will swamp all other airspace activity if it comes to pass.
- Remote ID: this is driven by security issues rather than aviation safety, related to illegal drone activity and nothing to do with model flying. Cost (~£30 per aircraft) reduces participation.
- France has seen a 20% decrease in model flyers, the USA a 50% decrease, since these measures were introduced. Most model flying is from fixed sites, so ground-based notification via an App (e.g. Altitude Angel) is the BMFA preferred way forward. The same applies to electronic conspicuity. BMFA will fight the requirement for remote ID and electronic conspicuity as they are disproportionate for model flying.
- CAA: operator registration fee is set to increase to £12 from April following the current public consultation. Everyone will automatically be given a Flyer ID in addition to their Operator ID, as the police are trained to work with Flyer IDs.
- Membership cards will be digital by default from 2023 and downloadable to mobile devices (e.g. Apple Wallet). Plastic cards will be available at an extra cost, as now.
- Membership numbers reduced from 30,349 in 2021 to 29,548 in 2022. Budget for 2023 is based on 30,000 members. Insurance cost has gone up by £1 per member.
- Buckminster ran a £29k deficit in 2021-22. The BMFA budget for the same time period had an operating surplus of £70.5k, this despite another £10k donation to Buckminster.
- Membership fees for 2023 were due to increase by the rate of inflation but the Executive thought this unreasonable in the current economic climate, so fees will increase across the board by £2 (Seniors to £42, Juniors to £20, etc.).
- The increase in insurance costs and the decision not to increase membership fees by the rate of inflation meant that a cut is required elsewhere to balance the budget. This will be achieved by reducing BMFA News to four issues per year instead of six.
Revised Articles of Association
These were passed.
Area representation on the BMFA Board of Management
Under the new Articles of Association, Areas Council can send four delegates as non-Executive Directors from 2023. The October Areas Council decided that Area Delegates will serve in these positions for two years by rotation, rather than election, on a 10-year rolling rota. The first slot for Southern Area is 2029-2030.