Assistant Chief of the Air Staff

Air Vice-Marshal Mike Wigston in service dress uniform

Air Vice-Marshal Mike Wigston


The Assistant Chief of the Air Staff is responsible for the strategic coherence and coordination of the Royal Air Force.

Responsibilities include the RAF Strategy, national and international engagement, and media and communications. He also has overall responsibility for the RAF100 centenary programme in 2018.

The Assistant Chief of the Air Staff is a member of the Air Force Board, the Air Force Board Executive, and is a Non-Executive member of the Civil Aviation Authority Board.

Air power plays a key role ensuring the security and prosperity of the nation; I am proud to be part of the RAF team in the Ministry of Defence making that happen.


Air Vice-Marshal Mike Wigston was appointed Assistant Chief of the Air Staff in March 2017.

Appointments in operational headquarters have included Al Udeid Airbase, Qatar, as the Chief of Combat Operations in the Combined Air and Space Operations Centre; Basrah International Airport, Iraq as Commander 903 Expeditionary Air Wing; and one year in Afghanistan as the Director Air Operations in Headquarters ISAF Joint Command. He was appointed CBE in 2013 for his contribution to that mission.

Staff appointments in the Ministry of Defence have included the Operations Directorate and Targeting and Information Operations. In the latter he had responsibility for Computer Network Operations and Special Capabilities, including contributing to and implementation of the cyber element of the 2010 Strategic Defence and Security Review.

His education and training includes: reading engineering science at Oriel College, Oxford; the Advanced Command and Staff Course; an MA in defence studies from King’s College, London; the Higher Command and Staff Course; and the UK Pinnacle Course. He is a service Vice President of the RAF Charitable Trust and President of the RAF Rowing Association.

He is married and has two children.  In his spare time he enjoys sailing (dinghy and offshore).

Career history

1986 - Commissioned on a University Cadetship

1992 – Completed pilot training on Tornado GR1

This was followed by a succession of frontline tours, including operational deployments enforcing the no-fly zones in Iraq.

2005 – Assumed command of 12 (Bomber) Squadron

Flying the Tornado GR4 and leading the Squadron on two operational tours in Iraq and large force exercises in Canada, Malaysia and the USA.

2007 – Commander of 903 Expeditionary Air Wing in Iraq

Supporting a number of aircraft types such as Typhoon FGR4, Tornado GR4 and C130 Hercules.

2013 – Tornado Force Commander

2013 – Principal Staff Officer to the Chief of Defence Staff

Working for General Lord Richards and, from July 2013, for General Sir Nicholas Houghton after a short spell as the Tornado Force Commander.

2015 – Appointed Administrator of the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia

And Commander British Forces Cyprus, responsible for the civil governance of the Sovereign Base Areas and command of British forces based permanently in Cyprus.

2017 – Appointed Assistant Chief of Air Staff


2013 - Appointed CBE

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