Moray councillors have given their backing to bring the first ever UK spaceport to Kinloss – claiming it is a clear front runner.
A response to the UK Government’s survey of potential sites for a spaceport was tabled at a meeting of the council’s economic development and infrastructure committee.
The response was drafted by independent consultants and co-ordinated by Highlands and Islands Enterprise on behalf of the Moray Economic Partnership.
Chairman of both the Moray Economic Partnership and the economic development and infrastructure committee, councillor John Cowe, said that Kinloss was a clear front runner for the spaceport.
“Whilst this is just the first step in a selection process that involves the whole of the UK, we – the council and MEP – believe that Moray has an excellent chance,” he said.
“The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) will consider all responses before moving to the short-listing stage of the process, which if Kinloss is on that list will require further work to press our case.
“The economic benefits from such a project are enormous, and every effort will be made to bring it to Moray.”
The global space market is estimated to be worth £400billion and only recently Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic pledged its support to a UK spaceport.
Elgin City South SNP councillor Graham Leadbitter, who is his party’s economic development spokesman, said last night: “I’m delighted that businesses leaders are backing the spaceport as it has the potential to bring a massive boost to the economy.
“We still have a while to go till we know what the future holds in terms of a UK spaceport but Moray is the ideal candidate.”
Moray’s response to the spaceport consultation is expected to be submitted to the government on October 6.
The Civil Aviation Authority is expected to release a short list of potential sites in November.