Born 1948, Admiral Lord West joined the Navy in 1965. He spent the majority of his naval career at sea, serving in fourteen different ships and commanding three of them. In 1980 he took command of the frigate HMS ARDENT taking her south to the Falkland Islands in 1982 where she was sunk in their successful recapture. He was subsequently awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for his part in the action and led the Victory Parade through the City of London.
He served three years as Chief of Defence Intelligence covering the Kosovo War. He was promoted to Admiral in November 2000 when he became Commander-in-Chief Fleet, NATO Commander-in-Chief East Atlantic and NATO Commander Allied Naval Forces North. He led the United Kingdom’s maritime response to 9/11 including the invasion of Afghanistan.