Harwell Campus, the science and innovation hub, has secured £110m funding from Santander Corporate & Commercial to further expand the campus, and enter its next 400,000 sq ft phase of development.

Santander has assisted with growth that will exceed 1 million sq ft in under eight years; the campus is planning a total of 5.5 million sq ft development.

Catering for science and technology organisations at every stage of their growth, the development will further expand Harwell’s unique portfolio of hybrid buildings, offering flexible space comprising offices, laboratories and high-tech manufacturing facilities.

Harwell offers business incubation from Seed or Series A and throughout their lifecycle. The campus provides free business service workshops covering legal, financial, and marketing advice, networking events, and access to an onsite network of corporates, public agencies and venture capital firms to collaborate with, and access funding from.

Europe’s largest collection of open access scientific facilities, worth over £2bn is located at Harwell. Companies looking to grow at pace, or explore new markets, can advance their research, validate and test their technology, and tap into the knowledge and skills of the 5,500 people strong science and tech campus community.

Angus Horner, director of Harwell Campus, said, “Harwell is on a mission to stimulate innovation in the science and tech industries, drive economic growth in the UK and boost our place in the global market.

“With a combination of private companies, startups, investors, government organisations, and academics all in one place, it is environment with unique opportunities for collaboration.

“Being co-located with Europe’s largest collection of open access science facilities, organisations can advance their research, validate and test their technology and tap into the knowledge and skills of the 5,500 strong science and tech community.”

According to a recent report, Oxford and Cambridge are estimated to need 2.5 million sq ft  (the equivalent of 40 football fields) of laboratory and research space to accommodate growth. It is predicted that meeting this target would contribute £2.8bn to the UK economy. With this development at Harwell Campus – the equivalent of the UK’s largest stadium, Wembley, or 7 football fields – the UK is already making strides towards meeting this target.

William Cooper, partner in the joint venture at Harwell Campus, said: “This round of funding enables us to expand our unique portfolio of attractive hybrid buildings. Having Santander alongside us puts Harwell in a strong position for continued growth in order to meet the pent-up demand for 2.5 million sq ft of research labs in Oxbridge alone.”