Industry working with Government and academia has built a firm foundation for growth.

In the National Space Strategy, the Government has stated it will empower British companies to capitalise on new opportunities, with the UK providing a comprehensive end-to-end offer for space businesses to start and grow, including launches into orbit from British spaceports from 2022. Space will help to fight climate change, with satellites providing an extraordinary insight into our climate and environment. And researchers and innovators will use space in new and exciting ways, improving the way we live and work. The UK must be in the vanguard of this next phase of space innovation.

Since the creation of the Innovation Growth Strategy in 2010, the Government has been investing in the space sector:

2010

In 2010, government, industry and academia came together to create the ‘Space Innovation and Growth Strategy (IGS)’ setting out the opportunity, challenges and actions required to secure the future growth of the UK space sector. As a direct result, the UK Space Agency was established, and a National Space Policy published.

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2011

In 2011, a space cluster at Harwell was established, with the investment of the Satellite Applications Catapult and the European Space Agency’s European Centre for Space Applications and Telecommunications (ECSAT) at its heart.

2017

In 2017, the Government awarded £99m to the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory to fund the National Satellite Test Facility (NSTF) at Harwell and launched the UK’s Industrial Strategy, announcing £50m funding to the UK Space Agency for spaceports in the UK.

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2018

In 2018, the new Space Industry Bill passed into law. One month later, Reaction Engines – the Oxfordshire based developers of the SABRE engine which is a revolutionary ‘air breathing’ rocket offering the potential for ‘one stop to orbit’ – secured a further £26.5m from investors including Rolls-Royce, Boeing and BAE Systems.

2020

In 2020, the UK Government invested $500 million in OneWeb, to help deliver the first UK sovereign space capability. OneWeb has an ambitious plan to have mega-constellations in low Earth orbit, providing fibre-like connectivity from space.

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2022

In February 2022, as part of the Government’s Levelling Up Agenda, the UK Government announced its plans to invest £600,000 to support ten space clusters across the UK. The regional hubs (space clusters), will support new and growing companies, building on local expertise and catalysing investment into the space sector.