You say: "However premiere recognises the footage as 29.97 fps"
How did you get this information?
The challenge with many of these pocket camcorders is that, although they record in full 1920x1080, they often use non-standard codecs to create their video, and that can cause problems. For some of these camcorders, about the only software you can use to edit this video is the editor that comes included with the camcorder.
This gets even more complicated with multi-format camcorders, like this one, that could record in any of several different modes, none of which are a standard format, like AVCHD.
If you've got version 9 of Premiere Elements, you might be able to use the Hard Drive Camcorder project setting for 1920x1080 30fps to edit the camcorder's FHD format.
If that doesn't work, you'll likely have to experiment. You'll know you've selected the right project settings because, when you place the clips on the timeline, there will not be a red line above them until you add transitions or effects. (Versions prior to version 9 are even less likely to work with this video.)
Which output specs and format you use depends on how you plan to deliver your video. BluRay discs are the ideal output for hi-def video. It gets more challenging though if you plan to display your video online, which requires some reduction in size or quality in order to stream.
A quick off-topic: Steve, you said: "You'll know you've selected the right project settings because, when you place the clips on the timeline, there will not be a red line above them until you add transitions or effects."
Although I use the correct (as I think) preset for my AVCHD camcorder (Canon Legria HF R16), for SOME (not all!!!!) of the clips I insert in the timeline I get this red line above them before adding anything else. How so? Should I make the hypothesis that it is duo to complexity of these specific clips?
The movie content will not cause your problems. Probably you used a different capture format. The best way would be for you to post screen shot images of each clip analysed with GSpot Codec Information Appliance
Insanity is hereditary, you get it from your children
So even though im in the UK in a PAL area i should use NTSC preset because it has 30fps whereas all the pal ones are 25fps?
Also Im exporting it into a movie file to put on a memory stick to play on my TV.
As I said, you'll need to experiment. (The specs I found online said the cam shoots in 30fps.They may have produced a different cam for Europe.)
29.97 is effectively 30
Why did you buy a NTSC camera if you live in a PAL area?
If you are only going to show it on your computer it will be OK because Windows computers don't use NTSC or PAL and are usually at least 60hz and use a different arrangement of pixels to a TV set anyway. I dont know if this applies to MACs.
PAL is only applicable if you are going to show it on a PAL only TV set (like in your living room)
Here in Australia most new widescreen TVs can play either 50hz or 60hz PAL or NTSC so I imagine the same should apply in UK.
Most good new TVs have a clever way of eliminating interlacing problems so there is no advantage in shooting anything in progressive any more.
On my Sony BRAVIA it is impossible to see any difference between 1080i and 1080p.
Also, with most newer PAL set-top players, NTSC is not the problem, that it once was. The newer units will play NTSC, or PAL nicely. It is not the same in NTSC-land, however, as most players cannot handle PAL at all.
Still, it is always best to shoot in the TV standard, where one lives. Does that camera offer both TV formats, maybe through a setting in the menu? Some are dual-standard, though many are not.