Astronaut: I can’t wait for first view of Earth

British astronaut Tim Peake waves as he leaves the crew's news conference at the Cosmonaut Hotel in Baikonur, Kazakhstan, ahead of his launch to the International Space Station on Tuesday
British astronaut Tim Peake waves as he leaves the crew's news conference at the Cosmonaut Hotel in Baikonur, Kazakhstan, ahead of his launch to the International Space Station on Tuesday

British astronaut Tim Peake is eagerly looking forward to his first glorious view of Planet Earth seen from space.

Speaking at a press conference yesterday on the eve of his historic launch to the International Space Station (ISS), he was asked what he was looking forward to most about the mission.

He said: “It really has to be the view of Planet Earth.

“I don’t think anything can truly prepare you for that moment and that will occur in the Soyuz spacecraft once we get injected into orbit I’ll be able to look out the right window and see the beautiful view of Planet Earth.”

He also revealed that Christmas had nearly slipped his mind in the hectic run up to the launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

Speaking alongside his two crew member colleagues from behind a glass partition, he said: “You know, we’ve been so busy focused on this mission that I kind of forgot Christmas was just over a week away.

“Of course we’ll be enjoying the fantastic view of Planet Earth and our thoughts will be with everybody on Earth enjoying Christmas, and with our friends and family, of course.

“We’ll thankfully be able to give them a call on Christmas Day.”

“I also hear a Christmas pudding went up on Orbital Four (a supply mission to the space station), so we’ll have some treats as well.”

Major Peake, 43, is the first British astronaut to be sent on a mission to the ISS.

He is also the first fully British professional astronaut.