Bicester Motion:  Pioneering Property in a Mobile World

Promotional Business Feature: Bicester Motion
Bicester Airfield 12-07-20 -2

The world of mobility is changing beyond recognition:  new products, propulsion technology, buying models, manufacturing needs and customer demands are all on the move, all at the same time.  And the industry is racing to catch up.

As technology continues to develop, thanks to a reported £3.7 billion investment in R&D per annum, consumers too are being given innovative ways to research and engage with their favourite brands, from online experiences and interactions to pop-up ‘experience centres’.

The £74bn per annum automotive sector is no exception, with a plan by Government to phase out the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030, creating a battery market alone that will be worth around £9 billion by 2040. Mobility, and the infrastructure needed to develop and respond to these changes, is having to adapt and react rapidly, prompting demand for bases from which to respond to these new opportunities.

Bicester Motion aims to introduce a footfall of one million per annum to the mobility industry at its ‘blank canvas’, 444-acre destination development in the centre of the UK.  Not only will it allow mobility equipment manufacturers to offer an experience to their audiences, as well as promote its community, but also debug the myths around innovative and sustainable transport solutions.  And all within a site that promotes shared values and a strong community ethos. Divided into four quarters – Heritage, Wilderness, Innovation and Experience, with a grass airfield at its centre – Bicester Motion has already evolved with impressive speed.

It could hardly be better located as a hub, connected by two rail stations, and situated just five miles from two M40 junctions, and some 90 minutes from half of the UK’s population. It’s a location that provides the perfect foundation for Bicester Motion’s ambitions – within ten years it aims to be a top-20 visitor attraction in the UK. Sitting at the heart of the Oxford-Cambridge Arc – home to the UK’s high-tech manufacturing, science, and innovation eco-systems – it’s already part of a thriving area of disruptive businesses.

With the Heritage Quarter already well established as a national hub for historic motoring excellence, the next few years will see the development of the remaining Quarters, celebrating innovative areas of motion. Within this campus complex, visitors will also be able to explore open parkland and lakes, as well as discover an array of overnight-stay opportunities, including a 200-key hotel, conference centre and spa.

Total immersion in motion

The Experience Quarter is the latest to be given the planning go-ahead.

The Quarter will be a collection of automotive, aviation and cycling brands housed in eight buildings, providing unrivalled facilities alongside an active airfield, driving training and handling tracks as well as walking and cycling trails. The development has gained recognition from both Visit England and OXLEP, who have applauded the approach in aiding the UK tourism sector and providing both local and national benefits – including economic growth, training and job opportunities and new cultural leisure activities for both local residents and visitors alike.

Opportunities abound

As transport evolves to become smarter, with connectivity and options for autonomy now shaping the future of the UK road network and beyond, the Innovation Quarter will serve as the ideal home for industry-leading technology looking to both create solutions and shape the talent of the future.

Those businesses developing exciting, and critical, technology will be at home in the Innovation Quarter, a zone nurturing training, technology design, development, and engineering. Spread across six buildings, opportunities abound for ‘market disruptors’ within future mobility, designing and building key components, researching connectivity and autonomous-driving, even electric flight, to name but a few.

Behind locked workshop doors

MicrosoftTeams-image (1)Founded in 2013 as a response to a change in the historic motoring industry and, nine years on, The Bicester Heritage Quarter is considered to be the home of historic motoring enterprise in the UK. More than 45 different specialist businesses occupy the site, including Motorsport UK, the governing body for motorsport, Morgan Motor Company who offer a customer experience and on-track driver training and HERO-ERA with their range of UK and International historic rallies such as the renowned Peking to Paris Rally.   The Wriggly Monkey Brewery and an on-site gin distillery, Sky Wave Gin, also add to the unique ‘motoring marina’ ecosystem.

The Bicester Aerodrome Company sits within this Quarter, following its launch in 2020, offering hangarage and historic grass runways.  Providing a future for powered flight at Bicester was just as important as the refurbishment of the historic buildings onsite.

Bicester Heritage is held as an exemplar of constructive conservation by Historic England, crucially maintaining the look and feel of the nation’s best preserved WW2 RAF Bomber Station. In summer 2020, Bicester Heritage completed construction and delivery of  ‘The Command Works’ –  the first significant new-build construction in 80 years at the location. But it’s far from the last.

Walk on the wild side

A vital piece of the masterplan is the Wilderness Quarter, currently in pre-application planning.  It will seek to regenerate a former Quarry with its three lakes at the northern edge of the site through the delivery of a wilderness park, promoting a healthy lifestyle, ecology and outdoor activities.

This Quarter will be delivered in two phases: on the northern lake edge is a reserve that will provide a place for the local community to explore nature along a discovery trail, with areas to relax and appreciate the beauty of the surroundings. The southern lakes will provide eco-lodge style accommodation for overnight visitors.


“Bicester Motion will be one to watch within Oxfordshire and beyond. We want to project the future of mobility from Bicester through the lens of leisure, experience, culture and tourism. We’re at the heart of the UK technology, mobility and tourism clusters and it’s that connectivity that will disrupt how business is done, and provide a vision for how the mobility industries, and their audiences, interact.” Concludes Dan Geoghegan, CEO.


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