24 September 2019 – Space industry pioneer and entrepreneur, Will Whitehorn, today takes over from Andy Green as President of UKspace, the trade association which represents the UK space industry.
Will, who was formerly President of Virgin Galactic, played a central role in the development and concept of commercial spaceflight, and now holds several non-executive roles at companies and organisations including the Royal Air Force, Good Energy PLC, Stagecoach Group PLC, AAC Clyde Space and Scottish Event Campus Ltd. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society. He was also awarded the 2010 Geoffrey Pardoe RAeS Space Award for services to the space industry.
Will said: “I would like to thank Andy Green for the amazing job he has done establishing UKspace. The industry is at a critical stage of development as we are on the cusp of an industrial revolution in space. Not only are satellites becoming exponentially more capable every month, but the new technologies for space launch are finally upon us, so the UK has the opportunity to become a powerhouse for both global manufacturing and space launch from the new space ports in the UK.
“At UKspace we are determined to forge a partnership with Government to achieve this and continue growing the industry and its contribution to Britain’s place in the global economy.”
Andy, who has been President of UKspace since 2009, said: Andy, added: “The space industry in the UK has an exciting future. Over the ten years I’ve been President of UKspace, we’ve established a global reputation for innovation and grown our global market share. We’ve seen the establishment of the UK Space Agency and the Satellite Applications Catapult. And the public’s love of space was rekindled by ESA’s Major Tim Peake’s space station mission. I’m proud of what the industry has achieved.
“But big challenges remain. Space has never been more important for creating growth and opportunity, and for national security and defence. Yet changes to our international relationships risk undermining the UK’s unique sovereign capabilities. I’m encouraged by the Government’s announcement of a National Space Council. Now we need to see clear leadership from the sector and Government in delivering a fully financed National Space Programme.
“Will is the perfect leader to pull together the industry for this exciting next phase of its development.”