an excellent summary of 'law for photographers'
ACPO guidance for police officers
Home Office circular to Chief Officers of Police
BSIA guidance to security officers about photography
The big guns
Human Rights [UK and ECHR]
Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984
Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005
Liberty's guidance on Breach of the Peace
The Public Order Act 1986
This is perhaps the most confusing aspect of the law with security guards and photographers not understanding legal restrictions, their rights and responsibilities. This section covers what constitutes a public area.
Relatively few restrictions are imposed on photographers by the Official Secrets Act 1911 (amended 1920).
Legislation relating to Counter-Terrorism and Security is very complex.
We maintain that, notwithstanding that, it should also be balanced, nondiscriminatory and proportionate.
The Data Protect Act is frequently wrongly cited as a means of stopping people from taking photographs or filming videos. The DPA is unlikely to apply in many situations where photographs are taken for private purposes.
Stop and Search
From a legal perspective, Stop and Search is a well documented procedure, however, this very emotive subject is frequently misunderstood.
The source of many heated debates, as officials and members of the general public have taken the law into their own hands out of a misguided sense that they are protecting children from photographers.
Some photographers prefer to head for the countryside. Issues such as "Right to roam" and overzealous land managers can unduly restrict photographers. We note that several sources point to Scotland as leading the way in terms of access legislation.
Copyright law is often misunderstood and ignored. For comprehensive advice, we've provided this link to the UK Copyright Service. We've found their general information in P-01 and photography information in P-16 to be particularly helpful.
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Please remember that we do not provide advice relating to specific incidents and that our site is aimed at providing information to the wider UK photographic community.
NB: we are constantly updating our site!!