Local business receives funding for drone services

Above and Below Imagery secured a grant of £9,000 from the Isles of Scilly Voucher Scheme.

Above and Below Imagery is a new business delivering unmanned drone services across the Isles of Scilly. It aims to provide high quality imagery which can help carry out specific tasks both above and below the

water. These tasks will include: filming for media companies, productions and general promotional

material which can be used to promote tourism, surveys of land and subsea structures, wildlife

monitoring, coastal erosion surveys, general mapping of the islands, and agricultural tasks which include data gathering about crop health. The equipment can even be used to assist with emergency service work such as Coastguard and missing people searches on the islands.

The business was launched in 2020 by Bryher resident Gareth Tibbs after he

successfully applied for a grant from the Isles of Scilly Voucher Scheme. The scheme is a £3.1million fund that offers eligible businesses grants between £1,000 to £100,000 to grow their existing

business or start up by enabling them to innovate, expand, provide new services and create local

jobs. The Voucher Scheme is supported by the European Regional Development Fund and is delivered by the Council of the Isles of Scilly.

Access to Finance, another ERDF funded project, has supported

Above and Below Imagery with their application. Access to Finance offers fully funded support to local businesses with their applications for Voucher Scheme.

Gareth says:

“The funding has helped me start a business in a growing area of technology. The use of drones creates a safer and more efficient way by which data can be gathered compared with traditional methods. The use of a drone is highly advantageous for surveys, promo and film work. I have already been lucky to do film work for several national TV programmes including Channel 5’s City Life to Country Life, Devon & Cornwall, and Walks with Julia Bradbury as well as locally with the

Council, Tresco Estate, SC Dogs, Visit Scilly and Scilly Gin. This year there are plans to carry out more underwater inspection and survey work across the islands. As a multimedia business which carries out a range of film work, we will also be opening a hireable podcast studio early Summer. This will add to our audio capabilities and provide high quality plug and play equipment for anyone locally or who comes on holiday and needs to record audio and video. This will also allow local businesses use

of this facility for their own marketing and promotional material."

Kirsty Graham, Engagement Officer from the Voucher Scheme says: “It has been great to support the launch of another local start up business and we wish Gareth all the best with his new venture. As our island community continues to endure the challenges of the global pandemic, we are more determined than ever to ensure that every penny of the funds available reaches our local businesses and supports them to adapt and expand to meet the challenges and new opportunities they are currently facing."

We can currently fund eligible businesses with up to 50% of the total project cost so if you have a growth project or a fledgling start up business in mind please get in touch to find out more.

The Voucher Scheme will is set to run until December 2021.

More information about the Isles of Scilly Voucher scheme is available here:


Email: voucherscheme@scilly.gov.uk