Gp Capt MARK J NORTHOVER MBE BEng CEng MRAeS RAF
Following sponsorship through Sixth Form and University studies, Mark Northover joined the RAF in 1987 and completed his first tour commanding an Aircraft Component Repair Flight at RAF St Athan. A posting to 3(F) Sqn as a Junior Engineering Officer followed in 1991, operating the Harrier GR5 and GR7 from RAF Gütersloh and Laarbruch.
His next posting was as Officer Commanding 1st Line Engineering Flight with the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, the Red Arrows. During this tour he deployed extensively to South Africa, the Far East and Australasia in support of UK export campaigns. He was awarded the MBE for his services to the Red Arrows in the QBHL 1997.
Mark then completed a short appointment as the Engineering Authority (EA) for Mechanical Systems in the Harrier Support Authority at RAF Wyton and, upon being selected for promotion to squadron leader in 1997, he took up post as the EA for RAF and Royal Navy Aircraft Assisted Escape Systems. Remaining at RAF Wyton, Mark was appointed to become the engineering specialist member of the VC10 Airworthiness Review Team in 1999, working for the Inspectorate of Flight Safety; this involved an independent review of the design, operation of and support to the ageing VC10 fleet.
In 2000, the Red Arrows again beckoned and Mark became the first squadron leader Senior Engineering Officer, holding QR640 responsibility for the Team. He was also the Project Officer for the Team’s relocation from RAF Cranwell to Scampton.
A change of pace came in 2002 when Mark deployed on Out of Area operations to Prince Sultan Air Base, KSA, as Officer Commanding Engineering Support Squadron during a period characterised by the build-up ahead of the second Gulf War. A return to RAF Wyton followed where, as the Harrier Fleet and Programmes Manager, he was responsible for the GR7A and GR9 upgrades.
Promotion to wing commander in 2004 saw Mark learning German ahead of Advanced Staff Training at the German Armed Forces Staff College in Hamburg. On completion of the course in 2007, he was posted to the Typhoon Project Team at DE&S Abbey Wood, responsible for developing the Typhoon Availability Service contract with BAES. His efforts were rewarded with his selection in late 2009 to command Engineering and Logistics Wing at RAF Leuchars during the drawdown of the Tornado F3 force and the station’s transition to a Typhoon Main Operating Base.
Mark then briefly served as a Cyber Policy Staff Officer in MoD before being selected for promotion to group captain in 2012 and posted to MoDSAP as Group Captain Salam, responsible for the UK MoD operations, engineering and logistics support to Typhoon aircraft sold to and being operated by the Royal Saudi Air Force under the Salam Govt-to-Govt contract. This was followed by a posting in April 2015 to become Group Captain Support and Chief Air Engineer in HQ 1 Group, where his responsibilities included platforms ranging from Lightning, Typhoon, Tornado, the ISTAR /UAV fleets and the vintage aircraft of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight.
He took up his current appointment as Chief of Staff, Typhoon Exports, in December 2016.
Mark is married to Kathleen and their family home is in Edinburgh. Outside of work, he enjoys most sports, but particularly golf and skiing.