Following education in Dublin and at Welbeck College, Richard Cripwell was commissioned into the Corps of Royal Engineers in August 1982. His junior Regimental appointments were spent in Hong Kong, Germany and Northern Ireland. He commanded 34 Field Squadron (Air Support), working directly in support of Royal Air Force operational deployments and 26 Engineer Regiment, supporting 12 Mechanized Brigade. He has also commanded the Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Task Force in Kosovo, responsible for conducting operations relating to Persons Indicted for War Crimes in the Former Yugoslavia. More recently he was Commander Engineers in NATO’s Allied Rapid Reaction Corps and lately commanded British Forces in Cyprus.
His training appointments have been on the Fighting in Built-Up Areas Training Team at the School of Infantry, the Mozambique Training Team (based in Zimbabwe) and as a company commander at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.
On the staff he has served in the Defence Intelligence Staff, in HQ Kosovo Force (Rear) in Macedonia, as Military Assistant to the Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Equipment Capability) and as the Assistant Director for Information Operations in the Ministry of Defence. As a Brigadier he served in Baghdad as the Director Energy Operations in Multi-National Forces – Iraq, as the Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence at the Permanent Joint Headquarters in Northwood and in Kabul, where he was Director of the Strategic Transition and Assessment Group in HQ ISAF. Most recently, in addition to Command in Cyprus he was the Administrator (Governor) of the Sovereign Base Areas, one the United Kingdom’s fourteen Overseas Territories.
A graduate of the Army Staff Course and the Higher Command and Staff Course, he has served on operations in Northern Ireland, the Balkans, Afghanistan and most of the Middle East, an area in which he has an abiding interest. He was appointed an Officer of the US Legion of Merit for his service in Iraq.
Married to Louise with a son (16) and a daughter (11), his home is in the Test Valley in Hampshire. His interests are best described as eclectic and irrational, but the truth is that there is very little he isn’t interested in.
Defence Attaché, USA
A Defence Attaché is a member of the armed forces who serves in an embassy as a representative of their country’s defence establishment abroad. The Defence Attaché is responsible for bilateral military and defence relations.