About ADSW

Steve MacNeil – Managing Director

Welcome to Air Drones South West

Steve has been involved in aviation for over 30 years. Initially as a Military Helicopter pilot in the Fleet Air Arm, he has operated aircraft all over the world in a wide range of conditions. As a Helicopter Instructor, he has taught Royal Navy Sea King and Merlin pilots, Algerian AW101 Search and Rescue Crews, and Federal German Navy Search and Rescue Pilots. After leaving the military, Steve flew the Dauphin AS365N2 for British International on the Royal Navy’s Flag Officer Sea Training contract, before flying the AS365N3 variant with the Belgian Company Noordsee Helikopters Vlaanderen (NHV). He operated out of Kenya and Ghana on Oil and Gas support contracts before joining CHC Helicopters as the Senior Manager, Worldwide Training Quality Assurance.

In 2016 Steve started Air Drones South West in order to join the growing revolution in the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Commercial Use. As a qualified helicopter pilot with an Airline Transport Pilot License (Helicopters), he is fully qualified to operate UAVs for Commercial Operations. With more than 30 years of flying experience, he takes a professional approach to each flight with the UAV, treating it with the same consideration as a real aircraft. This ensures that all flying undertaken is conducted safely, efficiently, and within the rules of the UK Air Navigation Order and CAP722 (Unmanned Aircraft System Operations in UK Airspace).

Why Use Us


Based in Cornwall, Air Drones South West will travel to your location. We are qualified to operate anywhere in the United Kingdom and can provide services to international projects with the prior approval of the Host Nations CAA.


We will discuss with you the requirements of your aerial project and will offer a bespoke tailored package to ensure satisfaction with the result.

A typical package will include the following:

  • An initial site visit to assess potential hazards: this can be done on the day of the aerial operation if preferred.
  • If required, we will process an Operational Safety Case with the Civil Aviation Authority to ensure that the identified hazards are recorded and avoided.
  • You will then be provided with a Quote: a 50% deposit is required before work can commence.
  • A second site visit to conduct the aerial work.
  • The post flight processing of all collected imagery.

Published on Nov 27, 2018
Engine House Media

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