Billionaire’s court case against Sutherland spaceport dismissed

by | Aug 23, 2021 | commercial launch services, Space politics, Spaceport

Sutherland Spaceport in Scotland has survived an attempt by Danish billionaire Anders Povlsen and his company Wildland Ltd to halt development of one of the UK’s potential spaceport sites. A ruling published on 20 August by the Scottish Court of Session found against Povlsen, who owns the ASOS clothing empire and is Scotland’s largest private landowner, on every count.

Povlsen’s case was that the Highland Council was wrong to grant planning permission to the vertical launch facility in August 2020, arguing that the decision failed to take into account the risks to the local environment and wildlife. The judge, however, could find “nothing in the appropriate assessment which suggests the existence of any such error”.

 

Chris Larmour, CEO of Orbex, the Scottish rocket company that plans to launch from the site, was understandably pleased with the decision. “This is extremely positive news for a wide variety of communities and businesses and paves the way for the Pathfinder launch of small satellites from Sutherland Spaceport in Scotland”, he said. “Sutherland is still the only UK spaceport with planning permission and now, with this ruling, the countdown to space launch from the UK can begin.”

As Povlsen reportedly owns land near the proposed spaceport, his objection initially appeared to be in the NIMBY category (‘not in my backyard’). However, Scottish newspapers have also reported a GBP£1.5 million investment in a rival spaceport on Shetland made by Povlsen and his wife via Wild Ventures Ltd, a sister company to Wildland Ltd, so there may be other factors in play. It appears that establishing a spaceport in Scotland is even more involved than the UK Government first thought.

About Seradata

Seradata produce the renowned SpaceTrak Launch & Satellite Database. Trusted by 100 of the world’s leading Space organisations, SpaceTrak is a fully queryable database used for market analysis, failure/risk assessment, spectrum analysis and space situational awareness (SSA).

For more information go to www.seradata.com/spacetrak

Related Articles

South Korea confirms shift of two missions from Russian launchers; Kompsat 6 goes to Arianespace and CAS500-2 goes back to international market

The South Korean vice-minister for Science, Oh Tae-seog, announced on 1 February 2023 that they had selected an Arianespace Vega Read more

What’s Next for Space Exploration in 2023 and Beyond

Much changed on Earth and in space during 2022. In July the James Webb Telescope, the largest optical telescope in Read more

Arianespace wins orders for five Vega-C missions to carry Copernicus satellites and a dual Ariane 6 launch for Intelsat

Rounding off November with an impressive haul, European launch provider Arianespace has announced seven orders for its launch vehicles. The Read more

SpaceRyde to launch multiple flights with ISILaunch from 2024

Canadian launch startup SpaceRyde has secured multiple launch agreements with ISILaunch, a launch services subsidiary of Netherlands based Innovative Solutions Read more

Analysis: Rishi Sunak replaces short-lived UK Prime Minister Liz Truss with cuts probably falling on space (at least for now)

After a disastrous time in office of less than two months, UK Prime Minister Liz Truss lost the support of Read more

First Vulcan launch is delayed again but it gets more payloads for its “risky” maiden flight

The development of the Vulcan Centaur rocket by the United Launch Alliance (ULA) is a long running saga. So there Read more

European connection: Unseenlabs orders six more satellites from GomSpace

French new-space company Unseenlabs has ordered another six 6U-CubeSats from nanosatellite manufacturer and operator GomSpace, to expand its growing fleet. Read more

IAC 2022 Paris: ArianeGroup introduces reusable upper-stage concept SUSIE

ArianeGroup unveiled SUSIE, its reusable Smart Upper Stage for Innovative Exploration, on the first day of the International Space Astronautical Read more

Categories

Archives