Second Sea Lord

Vice Admiral Tony Radakin CB

The Second Sea Lord & Deputy Chief of Naval Staff is responsible for the delivery of the Naval Service’s current and future personnel, equipment and infrastructure.

Vice Admiral Tony Radakin was appointed Second Sea Lord and Deputy Chief of the Naval Staff in March 2018.

Commissioned in 1990, his early sea service was as an Officer of the Watch in HMS Leeds Castle, navigator of HMS Andromeda, command of HMS Blazer and then serving as Operations Officer in HMS Beaver. This period incorporated security duties in the Falklands, NATO embargo operations in the Adriatic, as well as escort duties in the Iran/Iraq Tanker War, and countering smuggling in Hong Kong and the Caribbean.

Commands have ranged from Lieutenant to Rear Admiral of ashore, afloat and international forces. This includes HMS Blazer and Southampton URNU, HMS Norfolk, the Naval Training Team in Iraq (where he was awarded the Bronze Star), the Iraqi Maritime Task Force, Portsmouth Naval Base, and Commander of UK Maritime Forces and NATO’s High Readiness Maritime Component Commander.

It also encompasses commanding in Iraq on Operation TELIC three times as a Commander, Captain and Commodore.

Other than Britannia Royal Naval College, his staff appointments have been in either Joint or Defence roles. These consist of operational planning at PJHQ, Military Assistant to the Under Secretary of State for Defence, a financial and capability programmer in the Equipment Plan Directorate, Military Assistant to the Vice Chief of the Defence Staff, and Head of Strategy Management (involving finance, capability planning and strategic force development).

Most recently he was Chief of Staff of the Joint Forces Command with specific responsibilities for people, infrastructure and the UK’s permanent overseas bases.

His education includes: reading law at Southampton University, qualifying as a barrister, the Advanced Command and Staff Course, an MA in International Relations and Defence Studies, and the Higher Command and Staff Course.

He has also graduated from several US courses including the US Combined Forces Maritime Component Course, CAPSTONE and the inaugural UK/US Future Leaders’ Course.

In 2017 he attended the London Business School’s Senior Executive Programme.

Married with and four children, he plays squash and enjoys sailing, mountain biking and skiing. He is president of the Royal Navy Squash Association.

Ready to fight

When diplomacy fails, the UK has to be ready to protect its interests and its allies. What’s more, as a member of NATO and the UN, the UK also acts to support the enforcement of UN resolutions and come to the aid of our allies. This is where the Royal Marines come in: we train to go where we’re needed – by sea, land or air – and deploy our forces with the aim of restoring peace.

Providing humanitarian assistance

When natural or man-made disasters occur, a country’s infrastructure and resources can be crippled. With loss of electricity, shortage of food and water supplies, and human lives at risk – responding to such life-threatening scenarios is central to the Royal Navy’s ethos. Because we have the skills, equipment and know-how to go anywhere, regardless of potential damage to local infrastructure.

Second Sea Lord Tony Radakin

Radakin tony

Rank: Vice Admiral

VIce Admiral Tony Radakin was appointed Second Sea Lord and Deputy Chief of the Naval Staff in March 2018.

Previous units

Related News

Naval medic’s bravery immortalised on canvas

Awards hat trick for HMS Mersey

Awards hat trick for HMS Mersey

See all related news

Navy Board

Responsible for running the Royal Navy


Admiralty Board

Command over officers, ratings and marines