11 Facts About Ben Key


Ben Key has served as First Sea Lord since November 2021.


Ben Key has commanded HM Ships Sandown, Iron Duke and Lancaster, and deployed on operations to Kosovo and Iraq.


Ben Key was appointed Fleet Commander in 2016, and the Chief of Joint Operations in 2019.


Ben Key was educated at Bromsgrove School, a private school in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire.


Ben Key studied physics at Royal Holloway, University of London.


Ben Key went on to be a staff officer in the Directorate of Naval Resources and Plans at the Ministry of Defence in 2003, Advisor to the Director Joint Staff in the Iraqi Joint Headquarters in 2006 and then a staff officer at the Permanent Joint Headquarters in Northwood in 2007.


Ben Key was appointed Fleet Commander and promoted to the rank of vice admiral on 10 February 2016.


Ben Key became Chief of Joint Operations in April 2019.


Ben Key received the United States Bronze Star Medal in 2006 and was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 2016 New Year Honours, and Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath in the 2021 New Year Honours.


Ben Key led Operation Pitting, the UK's evacuation efforts in Afghanistan following the 2021 Taliban offensive, in August 2021 and, on 15 October, it was announced that Ben Key was to be the next First Sea Lord.


Ben Key assumed the post from Admiral Sir Tony Radakin on 8 November 2021.