Colonel Paul Mitchell attended the Standard Military Course at RMA Sandhurst and was commissioned in August 1981. He joined the Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers in March 1982. Following two short tours as a recruit training Platoon Commander and Training Officer to 48 Command Workshop REME in Cyprus, he attended RMCS Shrivenham to read Aeromechanical Engineering. He went on to complete the Officers’ Long Aeronautical Engineering Course at Middle Wallop before being posted to 3 Regiment AAC in Soest, Germany, in June 1987. Whilst there he participated in a series of airmobile exercises undertaken by 6 Brigade and was subsequently appointed EME to the 3rd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, to see through the Battalion’s conversion to the Armoured Infantry role.
In October 1990, he took up an appointment within the G3 Operational Requirements Branch of HQNI based in Lisburn. In October 1992 he returned to Germany as SO2 Maint (Ops/Avn) during the formation of HQ ARRC. He attended Division 1 of ACSC 29 between February-December 1994 and was awarded a Masters degree in Military Technology. After completion of the Army Staff Course, he was appointed DCOS HQ 19 Mechanized Brigade and Catterick Garrison in December 1995. Whilst serving with the Brigade Headquarters he deployed to Bosnia as DCOS Multinational Division (South West) between October 1997 and April 1998. He took command of 73 (General Support) Company, 7 Battalion REME in August 1998.
On promotion to Lieutenant Colonel in May 2000 he was posted to MOD London where he was responsible for the management of the Tri-Service Operational munitions stockpile and financial scrutiny of the Urgent Operational Requirement package developed to support UK operations in Afghanistan. He took up command of 103 Battalion REME on 25 March 2002 and later oversaw the deployment of formed units from the Battalion to Iraq during 2003 and 2004. Thereafter, he served as Military Assistant to Lieutenant General Sir John Kiszely in his dual role as DCG MNF-I and the Senior British Military Representative in Iraq, within the 4-Star Coalition headquarters in Baghdad. After a short spell at DGD&D as proponent for the Army’s higher level doctrine he was selected for promotion to Colonel in December 2005.
He took up the appointment of Deputy Director Joint Technical Training in February 2006 where he had specific responsibility for the development of Package 1 element of the Defence Training Rationalisation programme In August 2008 he moved on to be Deputy Commander Joint Force Support (Afghanistan), followed by an appointment as Deputy Chief of Staff 4th Division in September 2009. He assumed his current appointment as Commander Equipment Support for Headquarters Force Troops Command in September 2012.
He was appointed as a Trustee of the Central Charitable Trust, The REME Benevolent Fund and The REME Museum in 2012, on incorporation of the charities to The REME Charity he was reappointed as a Trustee of The REME Charity and is one of the Trustees in charge of the Finance and Investment Portfolios. Colonel Mitchell is also a Trustee of The Armed Forces Common Investment Fund.
He is married to Carolyn and they have two grown up children. He enjoys learning about wine, plays tennis in summer and enjoys Alpine skiing in winter; he is discovering golf (slowly!), and is a previous Chairman of the Anglia Gliding Club.
He was awarded a Mention in Despatches in 1993 and a Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service in 1998.