Warrant Officer of the Naval Service

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Warrant Officer of the Naval Service (WONS)
Naval Ensign of the United Kingdom.svg
Ensign of the Royal Navy
WO Nicholas Sharland

since 2017
Ministry of Defence
Reports to Navy Command
Nominator Second Sea Lord
Appointer Navy Board
Term length Not fixed (typically 1–4 years)
Inaugural holder Warrant Officer, Terry Casey
Formation 1989-

The Warrant Officer of the Naval Service (WONS) is the most senior warrant officer of the Royal Navy. The person holding this appointment's main responsibility is to act as a channel between the non commissioned ranks and Senior Naval officers, enabling communication between the ratings and Navy leadership.[1]

The post was created in 2010, replacing the post of Second Sea Lord's Command Warrant Officer.[2]


RN WO1 Sleeve Badge cropped

A Command Warrant Officer Badge is worn on the left breast of their uniform during the period of the appointment.[3]

For ceremonial occasions[3] they may carry the Ceremonial Cane, made out of wood from HMS Victory.[4]


# Name Term began Term ended Notes
1 Terry Casey MBE 2010 2013
2 Steve Cass 2013 2017 [5]
3 Nicholas Sharland 2017 Incumbent [6]

See also


  1. ^ "Chapter 20" (PDF). [dead link]
  2. ^ "WONS and for all". Navy News: 36. November 2010. 
  4. ^ "Warrant Officer in a class of his own". Retrieved August 1, 2013. 
  5. ^ "New man takes over as top warrant officer". Retrieved January 3, 2014. 
  6. ^ First Sea Lord [@AdmPhilipJones] (16 March 2017). "Good to talk with WO Sharland, who tomorrow becomes Warrant Officer of the Naval Service -a key link between my top team & frontline Navy" (Tweet) – via Twitter. 
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