Wantage and Didcot's MP has hosted his second annual science and technology forum.

The gathering led by David Johnston attracted an array of organisations from the science and technology sector across the MP's district.

These included Diamond Light Source, OrbitFab and the Science and Technology Facilities Council.

The keynote speech at the forum was delivered by Andrew Griffith MP, minister for science, research and innovation at the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, who also took questions from attendees.

Oxford Mail: David Johnston MP (left) and science minister Andrew GriffithDavid Johnston MP (left) and science minister Andrew Griffith (Image: David Johnston)

Mr Johnston's constituency boasts a number of the UK's leading scientific organisations, with Diamond Light Source, the Rosalind Franklin Institute, and the European Space Agency having facilities in both Harwell and Milton Park.

The Harwell Campus, worth £3 billion in scientific infrastructure and home to more than 200 organisations, is a key part of the UK’s space sector through its space cluster. 

Milton Park houses a similar number with more than 250 science and technology businesses.

David Johnston MP said: "It was great to see a strong turnout from our local science and technology organisations at my second annual Wantage and Didcot Science and Technology Forum.

"I was very grateful that the minister for science, research, and innovation came to speak to the group and take questions on everything from energy and life sciences to space and procurement.

"It was great to hear the minister confirm that the government will spend £20 billion on investment in science and research this year which is welcome news for our local sector.

"We should be very proud that our area contains some of the UK’s leading scientific organisations and I will keep doing all I can to support them."

Mr Griffith added: "It was terrific to speak at David Johnston’s second annual Wantage and Didcot Science and Technology Forum.

"David is a hugely effective champion of the science and technology sector in his constituency.

"I was very impressed with the quality and innovation of the local companies and organisations that were in attendance.

"I have visited Harwell Campus and Milton Park previously and was happy to commit to returning again soon."

Dr Barbara Ghinelli, Science and Technology Facilities Council’s director for innovation clusters and the Harwell Campus, said: "In Oxfordshire we have a fantastic range of campuses and clusters which include high technology businesses all contributing to the success of the UK.

"The collaboration between those organisations and the exchange of ideas and expertise play a key role in that success.

"This forum highlighted our strengths and future opportunities which we can capture by working together."