Filming in The Hills Shire

Filming Permission

The Hills, Hawkesbury and Riverlands region has been the backdrop for a number of film and television productions over many decades. It is an ideal location with stunning scenery, the river, the farmlands and the villages - all within easy reach of the production studios of Sydney.

The regions proximity to Sydney, the Blue Mountains and the Hunter Valley, make it an ideal place for any event that demands a spectacular backdrop including product launches, music video shoots, fairs and art shows where the focus of activities is the great outdoors.

If you are interested in filming or still photography in the Hills Shire regions - you will need to consider the following information when completing an application form. It is important you understand the requirements to avoid any delays. 

Before you apply

What type of request do you require?


Ultra-Low Impact Filming

On Council streets, Parks and Open Spaces please refer to the NSW Filming Protocol(PDF, 294KB). If filming is to take place in a Council facility or venue, additional charges will apply as per fees and charges.

Low impact filming and photography usually includes a maximum of 1 camera, 1 light (if required), sound (if required), and 1 tripod (if required) with no other equipment or infrastructure. Usually no more than 10 crew members, and no disruption to council stakeholders, retailer or motorists.

Activities are contained to footpaths or public open space areas only. Public safety is maintained at the location at all times.

Vehicles associated with the conduct of the activities are legally parked at all times and this type of filming or photography will not require parking, traffic control or road closures.

There is no application fee for an ultra-low impact filming application.

Information on Drone Use is available below.

Please complete this application form if you meet the above criteria. This application form requires a minimum of 2 working days to process. 


Other Filming Requests

Filming or photography with 11 or more crew members (can be in excess of 50 crew members). There might be no construction or significant construction, equipment used is usually minimal however can be substantial. Equipment might include; trucks, medium sized cranes or similar extensive equipment. Usually 1 – 4 locations are required during the production. 

Low Impact Filming (11-25 crew)
Medium Impact Filming (26 - 50 crew)
High Impact Filming

Other fees may apply - if venue hire is required. Fee applicable until 30 June 2020.

Please complete this filming application if you meet the above criteria. This application form requires 5 working days to process.


Filming on Private Property

Permission from the property owner is essential. You cannot film on privately owned land without this authority. If your production is filmed on private property, you do not need to complete an application form with The Hills Shire Council.

If filming is primarily on private land but associated activity occurs on council land, it may be necessary, subject to legislative requirements, for a filming approval to be sought for these associated activities. This is to ensure public safety; an example might include running a cable across the footpath from the private property to a generator or management of reserved vehicle parking.

See the Local Government Filming Protocol document listed below for further information. 




Facility/Venue Hire

Additional fees and charges will apply if you require the use of a Council Community Centre or facility during your filming or still photography exercise. Conditions, such as cancellation fees, may apply as with the standard conditions of hire for the venue. 

Venue Fees and Charges can be found on our Venue directory page


Notify the Neighbours

Before you start filming you need to letterbox drop in the area you wish to use (business/residential) covering all filming plans at least 5 days before the filming/photography activities will take place. A copy of this notification letter should be provided to council prior to the letterbox drop – council can provide advice or assistance with your letter of notification:

Sample Resident Filming Notification Letter(DOCX, 13KB)


Notify the Police

Filming on public land requires NSW Police notification – the local area command should be notified by email or phone. NSW Police may need to be involved in traffic control or controlling planned activities within the same area at the same time of filming. 


Parking and Traffic 

Ensure you have the right traffic and parking management plans in place if required. This will need to be submitted to council with your application form. Please be mindful of surrounding residential or business areas when making traffic assessments to ensure the safety of our community. Any traffic plans require council approval. 



All film projects must have public liability insurance and a copy of the certificate of currency must be provided along with the application before any approvals can be provided.



Please contact a venue bookings officer (see below) for further information. 



Venue Bookings Officer 

1300 426 654


General Information and Guidelines

NSW Local Government Filming Protocol(PDF, 294KB)

Filming Guidelines for Parking and Road Closures(PDF, 291KB)

Drone Use - please visit the Civil Aviation Safety Authority Website for general rules and regulations


Online Application to Film in The Hills Shire

Click here to view form.