In the wake of the UK’s momentous decision to vote to leave the European Union, Nicola delivered a powerful speech at an event hosted by the Parliamentary Space Committee. Nicola spoke of how we are in chartered political waters, but that we must rise to the challenge of Brexit. Nicola knows that Brexit is not the path that most scientists and innovators voted for, and as a staunch Remainer herself she knows we must continue to fight to ensure the interests of science and research are at the front and centre as the process unfolds.
The Parliamentary Space Committee held the event to celebrate the UK’s space sector following the return of Major Tim Peake and to discuss its future. As Chair of the Science and Technology Select Committee Nicola led the committee’s inquiry in to space and satellites, which showed how the sector is thriving but that there is a lack of awareness in space in the wider market. See the report here: Science and Technology Committee.
Nicola spoke of the potential of the UK’s space sector and how Government investment can secure this as well as the need to establish a UK Space Programme.
Nicola says: We should be using the success of Tim Peake’s mission as a catalyst to drive the UK’s wider space programme. A UK spaceport will help keep the UK at the forefront of developments in spaceplane technology but only if they have the right technical specs – that will work for industry and attract investment. We also need to address the nationwide STEM skills shortage and harness the current enthusiasm for space.