Richard Knighton

Air Marshal Richard John Knighton, CB (born 1969) is a senior Royal Air Force officer and engineer. Since December 2018, he has served as Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Financial and Military Capability) at the Ministry of Defence.

Richard Knighton
AM Richard Knighton (cropped).jpg
Born1969 (age 51–52)
AllegianceUnited Kingdom
Service/branchRoyal Air Force
Years of service1988 – present
RankAir Marshal
Commands heldRAF Wittering (2009–11)
Battles/warsKosovo War
AwardsCompanion of the Order of the Bath

Early lifeEdit

Knighton was educated at Hatton Secondary School. As a University Cadet sponsored by the Royal Air force, he studied engineering at Clare College, Cambridge. He graduated in 1991 with a first class Bachelor of Arts degree; as per tradition, this was later promoted to a Master of Arts degree.[1]

Military careerEdit

Knighton joined the Royal Air Force (RAF) in 1988. In his early career, he served as an engineer officer and worked on Nimrod and Tornado F3 aircraft.[1] He saw active service in the Kosovo War. In 2006, he was appointed military assistant to the Deputy Chief of the Defence Staff (Equipment Capability). He then served as Deputy Assistant Chief of Staff Strategy and Plans at Air Command in 2007. From 2009 to 2011, he served as Station Commander of RAF Wittering.[1]

In May 2011, Knighton was appointed Director of Air Plans at the Ministry of Defence.[2] From January 2015 to 2017, he served as the Assistant Chief of the Air Staff.[3] As such, he was a member of the Air Force Board and also sat on the board of the Civil Aviation Authority as a non-executive member.[1][4] In July 2016 it was announced that he would become Assistant Chief of the Defence Staff (Capability & Force Design) with effect from January 2017.[5] In December 2018, he was promoted to Air Marshal and appointed as Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Financial and Military Capability).[6] In the 2017 New Year Honours, Knighton was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Bath.[7]


  1. ^ a b c d "Assistant Chief of Air Staff (ACAS)". Senior Commanders. Royal Air Force. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  2. ^ "Royal Air Force Senior Appointments" (PDF). Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  3. ^ "AIR RANK AND COMMAND APPOINTMENTS LIST 11.14". Senior Appointments. Royal Air Force. 9 December 2014. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  4. ^ "Air Vice-Marshal Richard Knighton". CAA board and staff. Civil Aviation Authority. Retrieved 12 February 2016.
  5. ^ "Senior Tri-Service and Ministry of Defence Appointments" (PDF). Retrieved 1 April 2017.
  6. ^ "No. 62525". The London Gazette (Supplement). 8 January 2019. p. 87.
  7. ^ "No. 61803". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 2016. p. N2.
Military offices
Preceded by Assistant Chief of the Air Staff
Succeeded by
Preceded by Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Military Capability)