New Chief of the General Staff appointed

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has today confirmed that Her Majesty the Queen has approved the appointment of the new Chief of the General Staff.

Lieutenant General Mark Carleton-Smith CBE is to be promoted to General and will succeed General Sir Nicholas Patrick Carter KCB CBE DSO ADC Gen in June 2018. General Carter is taking up the post of Chief of the Defence Staff, succeeding Air Chief Marshall Sir Stuart Peach who is leaving to become Chairman of the Military Committee at NATO.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said:

I’m delighted to offer my congratulations to Lieutenant General Carleton-Smith on his appointment of Chief of the General Staff.

Lt Gen Carleton-Smith has played a leading role in many of our recent operations at home and abroad, including our campaign to defeat Daesh in Iraq and Syria, our support to British Overseas Territories affected by Hurricane Irma and the military’s support to areas badly affected by the snow earlier this year.

I have no doubt that Lt Gen Carleton-Smith will be an outstanding leader of the Army at this crucial period, as we look to strengthen and further modernise the Army to deal with intensifying threats.

Lieutenant General Mark Carleton-Smith CBE Biography

Lieutenant General Mark Carleton-Smith was educated at Durham University (BA (Hons) History/Politics, 1985).  He was commissioned into 1st Battalion Irish Guards from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in 1986 and served in London, Germany, Canada, South Armagh, The Gulf and The Balkans. 

Appointed Chief of Staff 19 Mechanized Brigade (1999-01), he served two tours in Kosovo as Chief of Staff HQ Multi-National Brigade Centre.  On promotion to Lieutenant Colonel he was appointed Military Assistant to the Commander-in-Chief Land Forces (2001-02) and later assumed regimental command (2002-05), serving principally in Iraq and Afghanistan. 

Promoted to Colonel in 2005 he became Deputy Director Policy Planning in the MOD prior to assuming command of 16 Air Assault Brigade (2006-08) during which time he served in Afghanistan as Commander Helmand Task Force and Commander British Forces Afghanistan.  He subsequently served in the MOD as the Head of Army Resources and Plans (2009-11) prior to promotion to Major General in 2012. 

He was Director Strategy at Army Headquarters in Andover (2015-16) and assumed the appointment of Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Military Strategy and Operations) in April 2016.