Meet the Armed Forces Tutors

Tutor: David Ward

David Ward

Head of Public Services Engagement

David Ward Cdr RN (Rtd), MSc, PG Cert, BA (Hons), FInstLM, FCMI, MCGI (L&M) joined the University in 2009 following 35 years distinguished service in the Royal Navy (RN) and currently leads our armed forces engagement.

David joined the RN in 1975 as a boy seaman and was commissioned from the ranks in 1988. He graduated from the Britannia Royal Naval College, Greenwich and Maritime Training School in 1989 with the award of the Sir Richard Clayton Memorial Sword and honorary membership of the RN Review for achieving top results in officer training.

In conjunction with his primary Physical Training & Recreation Officer duties, David was also a qualified Navigator, Operations, Boarding and Force Protection, Communications and Diving Officer. Utilising these skills he fulfilled a diverse range of management roles in the RN including, Officer in Charge of the RN Physical Training School, Executive Officer at sea and ashore, Naval Base Security and Health and Safety Officer, Officer in Charge of Submarine Towed Array Operations, Sea Training and Operations Officer in Iraq, and following his promotion to Commander, his own Command of a Maritime Operations Training Unit in the Middle East until he retired from the RN in October 2009. During this period he received worldwide recognition for his contribution to the successful Taiwanese Hai You and Thurban cargo vessel SAR operation while in Command of HMS Plover in Hong Kong where he also helped to co-ordinate the final departure and transfer of the Patrol Craft to the Philippine Navy. He also received a Commander British Forces Falkland Island Commendation and the US Army Achievement Medal for his outstanding work in the Falklands and Iraq respectively.

David has conducted several policy studies in physical training, fitness tests, sport clothing and recruit training in the RN and recently completed an MSc in Leadership and Management and Higher Education Teaching award. His teaching specialisms are Sport Management and Leadership.

Tutor: Nick Carter

Omani Junior Officers Trainer

Nick Carter

Nick Carter joined the Royal Navy in October 1980 as Junior Steward.  After basic training at HMS Raleigh in Torpoint Cornwall and professional training at HMS Pembroke in Chatham, Nick joined HMS Torquay before being selected for the Royal Yacht Britannia in 1984. While serving on the Royal Yacht, Nick took part in the Aden evacuation Operations in January.

 In 1987 he qualified as a Leading Physical Trainer (LPT) and his career then took him around the world aboard HMS Andromeda serving in a number of varied duties, patrolling the Persian Gulf on Armilla Patrol and deployment to the Falklands and West Indies. As a newly promoted Petty Officer (POPT) Nick joined the Type 22 missile frigate HMS Beaver as a Special Sea Duty Quartermaster and the First Frigate Squadron Physical Training Instructor.  In between sea drafts, Nick served on various shore establishments with the Physical Training Branch, including: HMS Collingwood in Fareham, Hampshire; RNAS Culdrose, Cornwall; HMS Warrior, London, and HMS Drake, Devonport. 

Following promotion to Chief Petty Officer Physical Trainer, Nick served at the Britannia Royal Naval College Dartmouth as subject matter expert (SME) to the Command in all areas of Physical Training for young officers under training. He also served as the SME for HMS Raleigh (junior rate Phase 1 and 2 training), HMS Temeraire (Physical Training School) as the RN Fitness Testing Support Officer, Directorate of Naval Recruiting within a Physical Training Outreach Programme to schools and colleges, and finally HMS Heron as Chief of Physical Training prior to retirement from the Royal Navy in 2010.

Tutor: David Lovell

Omani Junior Officers Trainer

David Lovell

David joined the Royal Navy in 1976 as an electrical mechanic.  Whilst serving in the Polaris nuclear deterrent submarine HMS Resolution he was selected for seaman officer training at Britannia Royal Naval College, Dartmouth.  Achieving a first class pass at his Fleet Board he returned to the submarine service as a Sub Lieutenant serving in HMS Renown. Subsequent appointments followed as Navigator and Sonar Officer HMS Olympus, Officers Training Officer at the Royal Navy Submarine School, watch leader in submarines SOVEREIGN and SPARTAN and as First Lieutenant in HMS UNSEEN. 

David successfully completed the Submarine Commanding Officer’s Qualifying Course (Perisher) in 1991 upon which he was promoted to Lieutenant Commander and appointed to HMS TORBAY as Executive Officer and second-in-command.  Following three successful operational patrols David was appointed to the Defence Intelligence Service (Naval Collection) in the Ministry Of Defence and then as the Submarine Special Operations Planning Officer in Northwood Headquarters.  His final Naval appointment was Officer in Charge of Commander Task Force 345 providing operational planning and support to the UK submarine deterrent force and all special submarine operations.

Following retirement from the Royal Navy David pursued a career in the private sector in operations management. He is currently the Maritime Training Instructor and Co-Ordinator at Marjon working as part of a dedicated team to provide Rule of the Road instruction and a schedule of military acquaint visits for young officers of the Royal Navy of Oman in preparation for further officer training at BRNC. His research interests are naval intelligence and underwater warfare.

Tutor: Ian Pitchford

Associate Lecturer

Ian Pitchford

Ian Pitchford BEng MBA PGCE CEng MRAeS MCMI spent 12 years in the Royal Navy, much of this with Commando Helicopter Force serving with 848 and 845 Commando Helicopter Squadron as well as the UK Maritime Counter Terrorism taskforce. He saw active service in Bosnia and Northern Ireland. Ian additionally held various project management roles within the Ministry of Defence and worked as a leadership instructor at the Fleet Air Arm leadership school in North Wales. Upon leaving the Royal Navy Ian served an additional 10 years in the Royal Navy Reserves and the Territorial Army, with a variety roles including Commanding the RNR leadership development team.

In the last twelve years Ian has been instrumental in the growth of his own company and has also completed an MBA, obtained a Diploma in Performance Coaching and a Post Graduate Certificate in Education as well as being a Certified Master Coach and trainer of NLP.

Ian is extremely passionate about the belief that we ‘are all better than we know’. As a professional coach and organisational change specialist he brings a wealth of knowledge and experience that is instrumental in changing peoples’ outlook on life. His research interests lie with those wanting to become inspiring leaders, capable coaching professional or instruments for organisational change and his teaching specialism is business.


Associate Lecturer

Ian Taylor

Ian Taylor has over 20 years’ experience in educational management, consultancy and leadership in a military and business context, in the UK and New Zealand. He is an experienced adult educator, training designer and executive coach with a Masters Degree in Leadership and Management. Additionally, Ian is the Chief Executive and Consultant for NavyBlue Coaching Ltd as well as tutoring on the MBA and BA (Hons) Business Studies courses at University of St Mark and St John.

Previously, Ian was employed as an Executive coach and subsequently as the Director of UK Strategic Partnerships for the Western Institute of Technology in Taranaki (WITT) New Zealand.

Ian’s Royal Navy (RN) career and subsequent experience as a Lieutenant Commander has enabled him to develop as a dynamic, enthusiastic and driven leader, who is committed to making things happen to realize strategic vision. He is a confident presenter with excellent communication skills, capable of delivering presentations and individual coaching/mentoring. His time as a staff officer at Britannia Royal Naval College (BRNC) provided valuable experience in training and coaching young officers from a wide range of countries, predominantly from Middle Eastern Nations.

The leadership, management and coaching skills Ian developed though his (RN) career, have transferred very successfully into commercial and educational settings. He excels in the coaching environment and thrives in situations where he can facilitate the optimisation of individuals and teams.

Ben Ryder 2017 HTML V2

Junior Officers Trainer

Ben Ryder

Ben joined the Royal Marines in 1982 and served for 25 years in a variety of roles. Primarily deployed to arduous but rewarding operations throughout the world including Northern Ireland, Kosovo, the Far East, Middle East and in the arctic as a ski and survival instructor he has in his career been promoted on a number of occasions reaching the rank of Warrant Officer.  

As a Company Sergeant Major he managed daily routines, administrative arrangements and welfare of 225 individuals within barrack and field environments (including the jungle) and on peace keeping operations. In Kosovo in 2000 he controlled the day-to-day administrative business of a large and active base camp (900 military and civilian personnel) with highly effective close liaison with international military units, the local community (including interpreters) and civilian aid organisations.

Bens highlight of his Royal Marine career was as the First Drill of the Drill Branch where he lead and managed the Royal Marines commitment to Her Royal Highness the Queen Mothers State Funeral where he received a Commendation for his leadership. Following a 2 year appointment as the Royal Naval Casualty and Compassionate Policy Officer Ben left the Royal Marines in 2007. After a short time in sales Ben joined Cornwall College Business as a Consultant Trainer within the Leadership and Management Team and in 2011 was promoted to Lead Consultant with the additional responsibilities of Centre Manager for the Business School’s accreditation with awarding bodies, audits and External Verifiers. In 2013 Ben left the College to start his own Training and Development Centre based in Southeast Cornwall specialising in Team Building, Leadership, Management, Business Skills, Coaching and Personality Profiling. He is currently the Leadership and Management Instructor and Co-Ordinator at Marjon working as part of a dedicated team to provide instruction and a schedule of military acquaint visits for young officers of the Royal Navy of Oman in preparation for further officer training at BRNC.