Rosetta Mission: Dr Matt Taylor is 'brilliant' but can't park his car, his family reveals

Dr Taylor was part of the team which launched a probe onto a comet for the first time

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Dr Matt Taylor, part of the team behind the ground-breaking Rosetta mission, may have been at the forefront of one of civilisation’s greatest achievements, but at home he struggles to even park his car, his family has revealed.

The physicist grabbed mainstream attention yesterday as he and his colleagues apprehensively watched to see whether their decade-long Rosetta mission would be a success.

But with his combination of sleeve tattoos and a Rockabilly hairstyle, social media was almost more interested in Dr Taylor’s rock star credentials than Rosetta - and he has since been dubbed the new Professor Brian Fox.

His body ink includes a tattoo of the Philae lander on the comet, which he got while wearing a t-shirt of the death metal band Cannibal Corpse.

Dr Taylor's Rosetta' tattoo (EPA)

Now, the 41-year-old’s sister Maxine, a project manager from Kent, has admitted that while her brother is “brilliant” he is also sometimes “useless” and lacks “common sense”.

She added that he suffers moments of indecision in daily life.

“He gets so involved in everything that sometimes common sense goes out the window - like losing the car in the car park, silly things,” she told the Evening Standard.

“If you go out with him you end up going round and round looking for a car parking space...he doesn’t want to make decisions," she added.

Dr Taylor lives in the Netherlands with his wife Leanne and their two young children Lily, 13, and Harry, 11. The pair met in sixth-form, and in the past he has described as her the most “beautiful and intelligent woman on the planet”.

And although Dr Taylor helped the Philae land successfully - a feat compared to throwing a hammer from London and hitting the head of a nail in Delhi - Leanne said: “He is terrible at following directions, and has lost cars in multistorey carparks many a time.”


But Maxine said that the entire family, from their bricklayer father, Graham, 68, and mother Christine, 69, were “immensely proud” of his acheivements.

Dr Taylor graduated with a degree in Physics from Liverpool University, before completing his PhD at Imperial College London.

Before landing the job on the Rosetta mission last year, he was studying the Aurora Borealis, or northern lights.

But despite his world-changing proportions achievements, the scientist is not phased by the media attention he has attracted, and merely wants to return to his family.

Writing on Twitter today, his daughter Lily said: “Dad! You’re famous! Haha how are you doing? Xx.”

He replied simply: “Just want to come home n see you lot xxxx.”