Journalist, author and broadcaster Mark Urban has been appointed as a Trustee of the Royal Armouries for a four-year term.

Mark’s long and colourful career has included working as defence correspondent for The Independent Newspaper from 1986 to 1990, covering the end of the Cold War and Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan – before joining the BBC as a reporter. He has worked as diplomatic editor for BBC Two’s Newsnight since 1995.

Career highlights include covering international events such as the 1990 invasion of Iraq and subsequent Desert Storm campaign; the Oslo peace process in the Middle East; wars in the former Yugoslavia during the 1990s; the attack on the World Trade Center in New York and its aftermath; plus the Coalition campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan and the Arab Spring.

Mark takes up his post today (Monday, September 3) after being appointed by Jeremy Hunt, the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport.

Royal Armouries’ Chairman Wes Paul said, “We are delighted to welcome Mark on board and I look forward to working with him. He has a wealth of experience and his skills will prove invaluable in helping us to promote the national collection of arms and armour to wider audiences, both at home and abroad.”

Mark is also a best-selling author, writing several books on military matters – both current and historical.

Soviet Land Power appeared in 1985, followed by War in Afghanistan in 1987. He has focused on Napoleon’s campaign in the Iberian Peninsula, the American War of Independence, and the role of the SAS in more recent conflicts in Northern Ireland and Iraq. His military history titles such as The Man Who Broke Napoleon’s Codes; Rifles: Six Years with Wellington’s Legendary Sharpshooters; and Generals: Ten British Commanders Who Shaped the World; have been best sellers.

Mark, who lives in London, said, “It is a real privilege to become a trustee of this hugely important collection. Since I have a passion for military history and national heritage, I very much hope that we can spread the word about the Royal Armouries’ treasures while enhancing public access to them.”

After reading International Relations at the London School of Economics, Mark held a Short Service Limited Commission with the Royal Tank Regiment during his gap year, and subsequently served four years in the Territorial Army. He holds no other public appointments.

For more information about the Royal Armouries visit:

Royal Armouries newsletter
Follow us on Twitter
Find us on Facebook

Notes to editors

About the Royal Armouries

Download the PDF press release.