§ Mr. Paul Marsden
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will make a statement on when he expects the next British astronaut to take part in a space mission. 
§ Ms Hewitt
Following wide consultation with industry and the science sector, the Government concluded that the provision of an astronaut did not best meet our space priorities of commercial exploitation and good space science. Within the inevitably limited funds we have available, we must prioritise in the best interests of the British space science community and industry. A British astronaut is not therefore anticipated in the near future. It is still possible, however, for British nationals to apply for overseas astronaut training schemes.