Where and why

The University of Leicester’s vision is that Space Park Leicester will be recognised internationally as the world-leading hub for space and space-enabled data industries. Building on the University’s international reputation for space science, it will be shaped by the demands of the UK space and space-enabled economy. At its heart will be a number of key features:

  • A centre for space education and training from school through to apprenticeships, university and continuous professional development (CPD). The best talent for businesses; the best commercial opportunities for students.
  • A vibrant community of large and small businesses, data providers and users working alongside researchers and academics, with a shared goal.
  • An open-innovation environment with state-of-the-art laboratories and access to technical expertise and business support.

The Space Park is earmarked for development on the Waterside zone just north of Leicester city centre, part of a new Enterprise Zone and already home to the National Space Centre. A landmark new building that will support the development of over 200 high value jobs is planned by 2019.

The plan for the site includes shared access R&D facilities, meeting spaces and commercial/industrial office space. It will host the Leicester Institute of Space and Earth Observation, one of the University’s four research institutes, alongside business and industrial partners. Co-location is a key feature to galvanise industry and for multiple organisations to work together.

Leicester is the obvious location for the Space Park. At the heart of the UK with excellent transport links, Leicester is already home to an existing network of space businesses and the National Space Centre. The site offers an extensive opportunity to develop a range of uses, including advanced manufacturing, space services, research institutes and expanding businesses.

The University’s Strategic Plan, published in September 2015, sets out its ambition to create a Space Park to drive innovation in its world-class strengths in space and Earth observation science and provide a new anchor for a vital British industry. It will play a key part in realising the ambition that our cutting-edge translational research and enterprise enriches the local and regional economy and fuels the Midlands as an engine of future growth.

The project will benefit from up to £15 million in investment from Local Growth Funding through LLEP alongside a £10 million investment by the University. This will fund the core activity at the NSP - just the opening salvo of a £75 million long-term aim to create a world-leading centre for space and space-enabled data industries.

Share this page: