Christopher Geidt

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The Right Honourable
Sir Christopher Geidt
Private Secretary to the Sovereign
Assumed office
8 September 2007
Monarch Queen Elizabeth II
Preceded by The Lord Janvrin
Personal details
Born (1961-08-17) 17 August 1961 (age 54)
Nationality British
Alma mater King's College London
Trinity Hall, Cambridge

Sir Christopher Edward Wollaston MacKenzie Geidt KCB KCVO OBE (born 17 August 1961) has been the Private Secretary to Queen Elizabeth II since September 2007.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Geidt attended the Dragon School, Oxford, and Trinity College, Glenalmond. He graduated in War Studies from King's College London and in International Relations from Trinity Hall, Cambridge. Geidt also spent periods at the Universities of Bristol and Harvard (as a Visiting Fellow), and at Magdalen College, Oxford.[2]


Geidt enlisted in the Scots Guards and attended the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. Invalided out in 1983, he was subsequently commissioned as an officer in the Intelligence Corps.[2]

In 1987 Geidt joined the staff of the Royal United Services Institute for Defence Studies, becoming an Assistant Director.[3] From 1994 he worked for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in diplomatic posts in Sarajevo, Geneva and Brussels.[2]

Geidt was recruited in 2002 as Assistant Private Secretary to the Queen. He became Deputy Private Secretary in 2005 and Private Secretary in 2007. Geidt is also Keeper of the Queen’s Archives and a Trustee of the Royal Collection, the Queen’s Silver Jubilee Trust, and the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust.[4][5][6]

As the Queen’s Private Secretary, Geidt is a member of the so-called 'golden triangle' of senior British officials – the others being the Cabinet Secretary and the Principal Private Secretary to the Prime Minister – with key responsibilities in the event of a 'hung parliament' in the United Kingdom, as happened in 2010.[7]


In 1996 Geidt married Emma Charlotte Angela Neil, youngest daughter of Patrick Neill, Baron Neill of Bladen.[8] The couple have two daughters.

Other references[edit]

In 1991, Geidt and Anthony de Normann sued the journalist John Pilger and Central Television over the documentary Cambodia: The Betrayal in which they were accused of being members of the SAS who had trained the Khmer Rouge to lay mines. Geidt and de Normann accepted ‘very substantial’ damages and all costs.[9] In a related libel action Ann Clwyd MP, then shadow minister for overseas development, issued a public apology to Geidt and de Normann and agreed to meet all legal costs.[10]

During and after the war in Bosnia (1992–1995), Geidt was deployed to liaise with the Bosnian Serb leadership, including Radovan Karadžić, Momčilo Krajišnik and General Ratko Mladić, all later indicted for war crimes.[11][12][13] He assisted the High Representative, Carl Bildt, in negotiating with Serbian President Slobodan Milošević for the removal of Karadžić from the Presidency of the Bosnian Serb ‘Republic’ in 1996.[14]

Honours and awards[edit]

Geidt was appointed a Privy Counsellor (PC) in 2007.[15] He was appointed Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath (KCB) in the 2014 New Year Honours for public service.[16]

Order of the Bath (ribbon).svg Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath (KCB) 2014 New Year Honours
Royal Victorian Order UK ribbon.png Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (KCVO) 2011[17]
Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO) 2007[18]
Order of the British Empire (Civil) Ribbon.png Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) 1997 ‘for services to British interests in Bosnia’.[19]
Gulf Medal BAR.svg Gulf Medal
Transitional Administration in East Timor Medal ribbon.png United Nations Medal (United Nations) United Nations Mission in East Timor
ECMM Medal YUG ribbon bar.svg European Community Monitor Mission Medal (European Union)
QEII Diamond Jubilee Medal ribbon.png Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal 2012

Geidt is a Fellow of King’s College London (FKC).[20]


  • Mr. Christopher Geidt 1961–1997
  • Mr. Christopher Geidt OBE 1997–2007
  • Rt Hon Christopher Geidt CVO OBE 2007–2011
  • Rt Hon Sir Christopher Geidt KCVO OBE 2011–2014
  • Rt Hon Sir Christopher Geidt KCB KCVO OBE 2014–present


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b c
  3. ^ RUSI Journal Volume 134 Issue 3 (September 1989) p.viii
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Marriages." Times [London, England] 16 July 1996
  9. ^
  10. ^ Reported by The Times on 6 July 1991
  11. ^ Brendan O'Shea The Modern Yugoslav Conflict 1991-1995: Perception, Deception and Dishonesty p. 155
  12. ^ Carl Bildt Peace Journey p.29
  13. ^
  14. ^ Carl Bildt Peace Journey p.220
  15. ^ "Announcement of Christopher Geidt being sworn of the Privy Council" (Press release). Number 10. 2007-12-19. Retrieved 2007-09-21. 
  16. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 60728. p. 3. 31 December 2013.
  17. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 59808. p. 3. 11 June 2011.
  18. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 58358. p. 3. 16 June 2007.
  19. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 54794. p. 25. 14 June 1997.
  20. ^

Offices held[edit]

Court offices
Preceded by
Mary Francis
Deputy Private Secretary to the Sovereign
Succeeded by
Edward Young
Preceded by
Lord Janvrin
Private Secretary to the Sovereign
Succeeded by