Metro Mayor Dan Norris has secured funding to boost the growing West of England space industry.

The West of England Mayoral Combined Authority has secured £136,000 from the UK Space Agency to fund work on Space West – the region’s “space cluster” – while the cash boost will double the 1,000 people working in the region’s space industry in just four years.

Mayor Norris made the announcement ahead of opening the UK Space Agency’s Ignite Space forum attended by over 300 of the UK’s best and brightest space thinkers and companies.

There are more than 100 top notch West of England organisations involved in space activities right across the region like the University of Bath, and Bristol’s Thales Alenia Space who have built satellite technology used in important space missions like the European Space Agency’s ‘Copernicus’ to track the health of the planet, Mr Norris noted. While the National Composite Centre in Emerson Green acts as a base for scientists, researchers and businesses to work collaboratively across labs and offices, he highlighted.

He said: “The West of England space sector is a success story. From the genuinely world-leading scientific research on developing state-of-the-art satellite systems to monitor and then address the impacts of the climate emergency here on Planet Earth at Bristol’s CGI UK to work to make nuclear-powered space missions a reality at Rolls-Royce over at their Filton home, we are harnessing the endless possibilities of space to boost all our communities. I’m pleased to have secured this £130,000-plus cash injection into Space West that we have developed so that, with our partners, we can go even further. My West of England Mayoral Authority will continue working to deliver so we can lever even more money to put rocket boosters under these and more exciting West of England space projects to protect our planet, secure our futures and explore our universe.”

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