Mark Cann

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Mark Cann (born 28 November 1965) is chief executive of The British Forces Foundation. He is also CEO of its trading company, Forces Events Ltd. He previously served in the Army as a Queen’s Royal Lancer for 12 years.


Cann was educated at Repton School, and Loughborough University (BA (Hons) in Politics and History). His military service took him on operations to Belize, Mozambique, Bosnia, and Cyprus. He also served in India, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Canada and UK. He retired, declining a place at Staff College, a Major, having been an Operations Officer, Adjutant and Squadron Leader, aged 33. He commanded D Squadron Royal Yeomanry for 18 months after retiring.


As Chief Executive of The British Forces Foundation (a morale boosting charity for serving members of the Armed Forces) Cann specialises in putting on events mainly in Operational Theatres, many of these projects have been televised and were produced by him. He won the Charity Times ‘Principle of the year’ at the 2008/09 charity awards.The foundation is a member of COBSEO, Association of Charitable Foundations and the Fundraising Standards Board.

Cann is also currently a director of CU2 Ltd, a successful ‘Events, Consultancy and PR’ company, The Armed Forces Charities Advisory Company (which overseas investments of £220 million with Black Rock on behalf of Forces Charities), The Combined Services Polo Association, RAC/AAC Skiing, Administrator of the Erach and Roshan Sadri Foundation (a grant giving foundation for homelessness and education) and Trustee of Wiltshire Bobby Van Trust (that protects elderly and vulnerable people and victims of domestic violence). He advises on charity, foreign affairs and defence and is a founding Director of the First Defence think tank.

Cann is passionate about sport and regularly enjoys, polo, skiing, golf and tennis. Other include watching football (supporting Arsenal), collecting first edition political autobiographies, portrait photographs and first edition early twentieth century novels. His wife Emma is a talented equestrian, School Governor and company director. They have a daughter Emily (born 20/11/01) and twin boys, Frederick and Barnaby (01/08/04) and live in Patney, Wiltshire. Cann is a member of the Cavalry & Guards and Royal Automobile Clubs.[1]


  1. First DefenceFirst Defence Website,accessed 10th November 2010