THE UK Government has announced funding to support the development of a space hub in Wales.

The funding could see a site in Wales chosen as one of seven spaceport locations in the UK, as the UK Government looks to boost regional economic growth and attract commercial investment from space companies.

In the last decade, space has transformed into one of the UK’s fastest growing and most venerable sectors. At the last count the UK space industry now employs close to 42,000 people across the country and generates an income of nearly £15 billion every year having tripled in size since 2010.


It will bring together local authorities, expertise and businesses to create a strategy for how the area can take maximum advantage of the commercial space race.

Part of this strategy will involve expanding beyond the UK space industry's ‘golden triangle’ of London, Cambridge and Oxford, and deciding on the locations to invest in the seven potential spaceport locations.

“I welcome news of this funding at what is an uncertain time," said minister for economy, transport and north Wales, Ken Skates. "It will give us the opportunity to identify areas of strength and opportunity within our space sector, and provide us with the stimulus to deliver a programme of work which will be structured to feed into the National Space Strategy.

“The space sector in Wales is a critical part of the Welsh economy, and we are committed to supporting its growth and development.

“We offer a unique physical and business environment to companies in the space economy, boasting a strong advanced manufacturing and technology base with specific strengths in sectors that share elements of the space industry supply chain, such as photonics, aerospace, secure communications and software systems.”

In Wales, a six-month project will see local government, experts and business leaders come together to find out how their area can take advantage of the opportunities of the commercial space age.

The project will be led by the Welsh Government and include academic institutions, research groups and businesses, to look at current strengths and set a strategy for how to grow the space sector in their area.