A new Innovation Centre is to be built at Westcott Venture Park, a 650-acre business park located between Bicester and Aylesbury.
The Westcott Innovation Centre will be located at the heart of the Park’s newly formed Space Cluster and will complement the new 5G Step-Out Centre and the Westcott Business Incubation Centre, which is managed by the Satellite Applications Catapult.
These centres provide business space and support for companies working in 5G, rocket propulsion and autonomous vehicles. The Westcott Innovation Centre is being funded by the Satellite Applications Catapult and the Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership (Bucks LEP).
The Satellite Applications Catapult has signed an agreement to lease with owners PATRIZIA Hanover Property Unit Trust which is subject to planning permission. If planning consent is granted a new 12,000 sq ft office and engineering training facility will be developed and let to The Satellite Applications Catapult on a 15 year lease.
The development of the Innovation Centre will further expand Westcott’s unique portfolio of buildings, offering flexible space comprising offices, laboratories and high-tech facilities.
Westcott Venture Park is recognised globally as an integral part of the UK Space sector growth strategy with a nucleus of well established companies supporting rocket and satellite enabled research and development projects.
The recent launch of the Westcott Space Cluster and the establishment of the Westcott Business Incubation Centre will attract a broad range of high tech companies and start-ups in the propulsion, UAV and communication sectors, with the aim of establishing a powerful ecosystem which will accelerate development in these high growth markets.
Rod Mordey, director at PATRIZIA explained: “This initiative builds on the success of the launch of the Westcott Business Incubation Centre and the Westcott 5G Step-Out Centre within the Park’s Space Cluster. The new facility will appeal to a wide range of start-up businesses and will bring the technology sector face-to-face with new flexible workspace provision. This is an important piece of infrastructure for Westcott Venture Park as it will help build the future for tomorrow’s brightest businesses.”
“Westcott is a unique business park with a national cluster of specialist companies building upon the site’s history in rocket motor propulsion. It extends to 650 acres so there is plenty of land for development of new light industrial, manufacturing and R&D floorspace in a strategic location within the Oxford Cambridge Arc.“
Stuart Martin, CEO of the Satellite Applications Catapult said: “We have been working with Bucks LEP and PATRIZIA for several years on the development of our 5G and Business Incubation Centres at Westcott. This new Innovation Centre will dramatically improve the facilities at Westcott for innovative space companies, providing ‘grow-on’ space to fuel their next stage of expansion. It will not only be suitable for companies already associated with the site but will become a hub for space companies from around the UK, developing into a dynamic community of space organisations.
“At the Catapult, we see Westcott as a vital future space hub for the UK. This new facility is just the beginning of what we hope to achieve here.”
Richard Harrington, chief executive of Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “Westcott is an important development area for Bucks LEP, one which encompasses our Aylesbury Vale Enterprise Zone and we enthusiastically support the new Innovation Centre.
“We are proud to provide Local Growth Funds to help establish the Westcott 5G Step-out Centre and Innovation Centre at the site. This investment links closely with the aims of our Local Industrial Strategy to act as a catalyst for working our economic assets harder with a view to creating more opportunity, more collaboration between sectors and more productivity.”
The Park is now evolving with a major investment programme to improve and further develop facilities and infrastructure, providing companies based at the Park with an excellent service and sense of belonging to the Westcott community.