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Westcott Venture Park expands with new building for space and agriculture sector

12 January 2022
The Business Magazine article image for: Westcott Venture Park expands with new building for space and agriculture sector

Global real estate agency PATRIZIA has completed construction on a building which will be home to a new In-Orbit Space Manufacturing Facility and a Healthy Living Laboratory at Westcott Venture Park in Buckinghamshire.

The new development, known as Building 4000 and comprising 27,000 sq ft sits at the junction of Wellington Drive and Avenue A.

Units A and B totaling 15,750 sq ft of laboratory, office and warehouse space set over two floors have been let to the Satellite Applications Catapult on a 10 year lease.

IOSM (in-orbit servicing and manufacturing) capabilities in Building 4000 will include the Catapult’s newly acquired MetalFAB1 Additive Manufacturing System - the first 3D printer designed for building rocket engines to feature at Westcott. Financial barriers to entry have traditionally made access to this sort of equipment difficult.

With this flagship investment, space companies will be able to build parts on a pay-as-you-go basis enabling innovation and growth for UK space-based businesses through cost-effective access.

For the Living Labs, Building 4000 provides a physical space for the agricultural and health sectors to collaborate, co-design and co-create solutions with technology developers. The Labs are next to the Business Incubation Centre, Westcott Innovation Centre, and Future Networks Development Centre just a stone’s throw away.

Rod Mordey, Westcott Asset Manager said: “The new development is a result of investment by industry and government, together with a £3.7 million outlay from Westcott owners PATRIZIA Hanover PUT, which enabled a matched funding grant of £2m, from the Getting Building Fund (GBF) through the Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).  We are soon to complete on the final letting of 11,250 sq ft at Unit C to another company within the healthcare sector.

“Westcott is a place for businesses to secure their future within a community of technology innovators and in a location that offers unrivalled security and space to grow. We continue to invest in the park’s future in order to retain and attract more businesses to this thriving community.”

Stuart Martin, CEO at the Satellite Applications Catapult, said: “We are really pleased to be able to further expand our offering to support the growing community of space businesses at Westcott, with both cutting-edge equipment and the knowledge and expertise of our teams.

“Activity at Westcott in recent years reflects the burgeoning excitement within the space sector, with companies seeing an ever-growing range of new commercial opportunities. We are delighted to be part of this development journey and working alongside the Westcott Venture Park and Buckinghamshire LEP to build the space community here.”

Richard Harrington, CEO of Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “This new facility at Westcott is a significant development towards growing the critical core of the UK Space Industry and helping develop skills and talent as part of a world class innovation campus in the heart of Buckinghamshire.

“We are delighted to support this facility, that contributes to our Enterprise Zone programme, with a £2 million Getting Building Fund award for the exciting new open access 2,500 sqm centre. This project signals the next evolutionary step of the Westcott site to attract new business and investment to this globally leading centre of excellence in space propulsion.”

Westcott is a 650-acre business park close to Bicester, Thame and Aylesbury. It is currently home to more than 80 businesses employing more than 900 people. It is managed by Lambert Smith Hampton.

Nicky Godding is editor of The Business Magazine. Before her journalism career, she worked mainly in public relations moving into writing when she was invited to launch Retail Watch, a publication covering retail and real estate across Europe.

After some years of constant travelling, she tucked away her passport and concentrated on business writing, co-founding a successful regional business magazine. She has interviewed some of the UK’s most successful entrepreneurs who have built multi-million-pound businesses and reported on many science and technology firsts.

She reports on the region’s thriving business economy from start-ups, family businesses and multi-million-pound corporations, to the professionals that support their growth and the institutions that educate the next generation of business leaders.

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