Filming for the community

Benefits to the community

Our job is managing filming in Kingston for the benefit of the community and the council.

Filming can help to raise the profile of Kingston to a wide audience and be a source of revenue for the council and local causes. London has a major international film industry which generates revenues of over £4 billion per year and employs most of the approximately 70,000 people working in the UK film industry. Kingston , as a key London borough, aims to be at the forefront of this exciting industry. For more about the UK film industry, see the BFI 2014 Statistical Yearbook.

We think it is important that filmmakers come to an agreement with people in the community before they start filming. They might offer to make donations to local associations of residents or traders, community projects like maintenance of local parks or to local charitable causes. We also encourage filmmakers to offer film opportunities in Islington such as positions for young people on film sets.

If you are interested in being part of this process, have a look through rest of the information on this page to find out how.

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Complaints

How to complain

If filming is causing a nuisance, please contact us with your name, contact details, and the details of the problem including the date and place of any particular incidents.
If the complaint is urgent, please contact us on our emergency phone number which is 07919 002115.

What we do

Below is a list of some common complaints and how we address them:
Parking has been suspended for film reasons
Parking is often needed for support and technical vehicles during filming. We proactively explore with the council ways to minimise the impact of suspending bays. Resident and Business Permits do not guarantee the holder a parking space, and the council has the right to suspend bays. When this is necessary for filming, we always give advance notice at the affected bays.
Filming activities are causing excessive noise or light
Some filming activities make noise and bright light. The majority of filming is only licensed between 7am and 11pm to minimise the disturbance this might cause. If we think a planned shoot is likely to cause significant disturbance, we make sure that the filmmakers come to an agreement in advance with people in the neighbourhood for example through letters and Q&A sessions with local associations of residents or traders. We can include any agreed conditions in the license and can take deposits from the filmmakers. The deposits may be donated to local causes if the conditions are breached. We also have a 24 hour emergency phone number for you to call us if you are being disturbed, and we will immediately contact or visit the set to resolve the situation. If a filmmaker does not act responsibly, it will count against them in future applications to film.
Filming personnel are being rude or antisocial
We expect film crews to film and act responsibly, and consider any rude or antisocial behaviour to be unacceptable. Before most shoots filmmakers will give their contact details to local people, so if a member of the film crew is rude or antisocial you can contact the filmmaker directly. If this does not resolve the situation, you can call us on our 24 hour emergency phone number and we will immediately contact or visit the set to resolve the situation. If a filmmaker or their crew does not act responsibly, it will count against them in future applications to film.
Filming activities are blocking my route, or restricting access to my house or business
Filmmakers may not block access to your house or business without your permission. Neither may they block a pavement or highway while it is in use, although in some cases we may close off an area for them. If we think a planned shoot is likely to cause an obstruction, we make sure that the filmmakers come to an agreement in advance with anyone who might be affected for example through letters and Q&A sessions with local associations of residents or traders. We can include any agreed conditions in the license and can take deposits from the filmmakers. The deposits are usually donated to local causes if the conditions are breached. We also have a 24 hour emergency phone number for you to call us if you are being disturbed without your permission, and we will immediately contact or visit the set to resolve the situation. If a filmmaker or their crew does not act responsibly, it will count against them in future applications to film.
My business has suffered because of filming in the neighbourhood
If Kingston Film Office thinks that a proposed shoot might disrupt nearby businesses, we expect the filmmaker to contact the owners in advance of the shoot to reach an agreement for example through letters and Q&A sessions with associations of residents and traders. If you believe your business is suffering and you did not agree to the filming, then please contact us (using our 24 hour emergency phone number if necessary).
Filmmakers are filming me without my permission
There is no specific right under English law to not be filmed in public but you do have legal rights to privacy and data protection which might be violated by filming under certain circumstances. Kingston Film Office supports Film London's guidance that all filmmakers should have your permission if you appear on film, especially if you feature significantly. However, there are situations when you might be filmed 'incidentally' and it is not reasonably possible for the filmmaker to get your permission (for example if you are one of a large crowd in public). In these cases, we expect filmmakers to make people aware (for example with 'filming in progress' signs). If you have spoken to the filmmaker and you believe that they are not living up to these expectations, we also have a 24 hour emergency phone number for you to call us on and we will immediately contact or visit the set to resolve the situation. If a filmmaker does not act responsibly, it will count against them in future applications to film. For more details on your legal position, have a look at Film London's guidelines.
Filmmakers are filming my property without my permission
Generally speaking you have no legal right to prevent your property being filmed (there some are exceptions). Nonetheless, we expect filmmakers to behave responsibly and to react positively to reasonable requests from property owners. If you have spoken to the filmmaker and you feel that the film crew are not living up to these expectations, we have a 24 hour emergency phone number for you to call us on and we will immediately contact or visit the set to resolve the situation. If a filmmaker does not act responsibly, it will count against them in future applications to film. For more details on your legal position, have a look at Film London's guidelines.

You and filming in your neighbourhood

You can help to use local filming to your community's advantage by joining or creating a local resident or trader association. Or your neighbourhood might already run an association you can join. The council has a list of some tenants and residents associations that might be helpful, click here for more information on these. We notify the associations we know of about any filming planned in their area, and we have standing agreements with several of them. If you represent an association like this and would like to be more involved in local filming, please send us an email with the contact and other details of the association.

For major shoots, we encourage filmmakers to engage with known local associations to agree conditions for filming, which can include direct donations to local causes. Film makers behind smaller shoots usually send in advance letters to all nearby buildings, or visit in person to talk through the plans and discuss any issues which need to be addressed.

Our community consultation process is guided by the Code of Practice for Location Filming in London.

From time to time, Kingston Film Office will conduct a comprehensive survey of residents and traders about their experience of  filming in their neighbourhoods. This is part of the agreement between FilmFixer and Kingston Council to make sure we are providing a quality service to the community.

If you would like to take part in the survey please send us an email with your name and address.

What you like about filming in Kingston

Many Kingston residents and traders are enthusiastic about hosting filming – it’s an opportunity to be part of your favourite films or shows, and a good way of raising funds for local projects. If you’d like to tell us what you like about filming in Kingston, please send us an email with your name, address and feedback. 
 
Residents associations are heavily involved in discussing plans to film in their neighbourhoods, providing any special terms and conditions to make sure they feel protected and respected by crews. And residents groups are putting donations from filmmakers to work in all manner of useful ways, from opening internet cafes, opening local play centres, buying street furniture, providing local police with bicycles, plants for community gardens, and even funding free concerts. 
 

Among the benefits to Kingston residents, Cambridge Road Estate has a new internet café – thanks to donations from filmmakers including Paul Whitehouse. Stuart Hall, Chair of the Cambridge Road Estate Residents Association says, “The filmmakers always send me a summary, so I know what’s going to be happening, and I can advise if I think any other residents need to be involved, or something’s not going to work. But to be honest, we haven’t had any negative experience. Instead, most of us find it really interesting to watch happening.”

Surbiton resident Mr Martin Snaith hosted filming on his street for two weeks. He says, "The location manager briefed us before work began, kept us informed throughout and did a thoroughly good job of being cheerful and ensuring that disruption to residents was kept to a minimum. His charm and diplomatic skills were no doubt tested to the full at times. We wanted to record how impressed we have been at the courtesy and consideration shown to residents by various members of the team. We thank you for the generosity in making a donation to our forthcoming street party - we hope that the assignment has been a success and we wish you well."