Published 26 June 2024

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His Majesty  The King has appointed our CEO, Andy Start, as the Reserves Forces Honorary Colonel of 106th (Yeomanry) Regiment Royal Artillery.

Andy, who is also the UK’s National Armaments Director, is a member of the Defence Board and a Co-Chair of the Defence Suppliers Forum executive.

Prior to his appointment at DE&S, Andy spent over 30 years leading Defence, Aerospace and Tech organisations, and has held CEO, President and Managing Director positions in UK FTSE 100, US and European listed businesses.

Now, he takes up the role of Honorary Colonel of the 106th (Yeomanry) Regiment Royal Artillery – the British Army’s only reserve anti-aircraft warfare regiment. The Regiment, situated in London, Portsmouth and Southampton,  specialises in delivering vital close support air defence to the UK’s manoeuvre forces, providing protection to critical assets from a range of airborne threats.

As an Honorary Colonel, Andy will support the Regiment’s leadership teams but will not have direct involvement in the daily running of the unit.

Andy said: “I am thrilled to have been appointed as the Reserves Forces Honorary Colonel of 106th (Yeomanry) Regiment Royal Artillery. As part of our wider Reserve Force, they make a massive difference to our readiness and our ability to keep our nation safe. I am really looking forward to meeting everyone in the Regiment and learning how they deliver their part of our Defence mission. Through this experience I will share experience and learn how best to equip our Armed Forces to make us more capable and able to deter adversaries from threatening our nation.”

Active in the voluntary sector for his entire career, Andy has chaired MidKent College and Medway Innovation Centre, has sat on the UK Electronics Council and board of Tech UK, is an active mentor and is a current advisory board member of Women in Defence UK.

The Commanding Officer of 106th (Yeomanry) Regiment Royal Artillery, Lieutenant Colonel Ryan Sinclair OBE, who was responsible for seeking permission for the appointment from King Charles III, said: “I was truly delighted that Colonel Andy accepted this appointment. With his background and experience, he will be a superb ambassador and role model for the Regiment and the wider Army Reserve.” 

Andy is no stranger to the work of reserves, with DE&S and its sister organisation, the Submarine Delivery Agency (SDA), having grown the Reserve Network by 25% in the last year alone.

The Reserve Forces make up approximately one-sixth of Armed Forces personnel and are essential to protecting our security, providing expertise in specialist areas.

Colonel David Bradley, Assistant Head of the DE&S and SDA Reserves Network, added: ‘The Reserves Network within DE&S congratulates our CEO, Andy Start, on his appointment as Reserves Forces Honorary Colonel of 106th (Yeomanry) Regiment Royal Artillery. 

“Andy is a great supporter of the DE&S and SDA Reserves Network and to the civil servants who make the additional commitment to serve their country in uniform as reservists. We’re delighted that Andy will be providing his valuable advice and guidance to the Regiment as its Honorary Colonel.”  

Vice Admiral Paul Marshall, DE&S and SDA Reserves Champion and DE&S Director General Gateway, added: “I would like to congratulate Andy on becoming a Reserves Forces Honorary Colonel. As a reservist myself, I appreciate the skills and qualities gained through our Reserves Force and understand the positive impact the experience has on a reservist’s ability to deliver. I would like to thank all of our reservists for the critical work they are doing and I am grateful for their commitment to service.”