Preparations are underway to supplement the existing NHS medical supply chains between Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly which could be vulnerable to disruption in the event of a second wave of COVID19.
A consortia led by DronePrep has successfully been awarded €200,000 via the Government’s Emergency CV19 Future Flight Fund to fast-track plans to establish a UAV/Drone Emergency Medical Airbridge and consult with landowners about using low-level airspace in Cornwall for emergency drone use.
The Cornish project will run for four months and pave the way for establishing future Drone Corridors, Medical Airbridge capabilities and goods transfer in low-level airspace via Drone in Cornwall. Early during Lockdown, the Transport Secretary (Grant Shapps) instructed the same team to conduct the first-ever Medical Drone deliveries to assist the NHS between Lee-on-Solent and the Isle of Wight https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NRH7aiULmHc
Now members of the same consortia including DronePrep, Windracers and Consortiq are running a project in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. The team includes drone, logistics, transport planning and medical experts.
Claire Owen, Co-Founder of DronePrep comments
“Commencing in September, our team will be engaging with Cornish landowners on both the mainland and the Isles of Scilly to help define future flight plans. We are absolutely delighted to be leading the project which could lay the foundations for similar emergency services to other remote locations.”
Gareth Whatmore, Co-Founder of DronePrep said
“If remote areas of Cornwall are affected by a second wave of CV19 it will be important that we have commenced the necessary consultation with landowners and regulators to prepare for flexible drone deliveries to support the NHS.
“The feedback from the public and ground stakeholders on this pioneering project will help us achieve this new service for the people of Cornwall and will help the industry develop more understanding of how to integrate essential emergency Drone services elsewhere in the UK. We are thrilled that the government have supported this project to help maintain the flow of NHS supplies to the Isles of Scilly”
During an inspiring Royal Aeronautical Society event in February 2020 which covered the amazing exploits of Richard Browning (Gravity), Nick Dyson, Francis Holland School’s Director of Creative Enterprise and DronePrep’s Gareth Whatmore hatched a plan over coffee aimed at inspiring the schools students. The goal: to demonstrate how we could use Landowner consents to open up the largest ever low-level airspace envelope over Central London.
A few weeks later in the midst of lockdown, a brief was agreed to realise this plan. We knew this project could raise spirits, help galvanise the students who were working remotely and to achieve London first which the School could be proud of.
The Sloane Square school lies within London’s Zone 1, and is deemed a very congested area therefore any drone flight within this region requires a number of permissions, including landowners, NATS, CAA and the Metropolitan Police Commissioner.
After receiving the brief, DronePrep started the necessary consultations to ensure the flight would be compliant and safe which included speaking with the Grosvenor Estate and Cadogan Estate which resulted in opening up 400 acres of low-level airspace.
PfCO DronePrep Pilot-in-Residence Chris Gorman (The Big Ladder Photographer) was able to advantage of the quiet streets and brilliant air quality that London experienced during the initial lockdown period. The footage is simply stunning and it was a absolute pleasure to work with Francis Holland School on this project and open up the largest ever flight envelope in Zone 1, London.
We are delighted to continue the collaboration with the London school on more pioneering work and STEM projects in the making.
If you have a Drone project brief you would like to discuss, please get in touch with DronePrep Founders Gareth Whatmore & Claire Owen.
We are delighted to announce that we have joined Cohort 3 of the prestigious BetaDen scale-up accelerator.
BetaDen provides a revolutionary platform for businesses to develop next-generation technology. As part of BetaDen, DronePrep will benefit from maximum exposure well within this ecosystem and will position our business at the forefront of future technology.
Having been BetaDen Residents for just over 2 weeks we have already received an incredible welcome and a vast amount of support from the mentors and our fellow cohort businesses which include:
Our new home is in the BetaDen offices located in the Malvern Hills Science Park – a community of some 400 people exploiting science and technology. We couldn’t ask for anywhere better for us to grow the business as we launch our BETA website following weeks of community testing, and then we start work on the full software platform.
If you’re nearby Malvern at any point please do call in to say hi – the coffee is amazing!