Accurate low dimension chemical kinetic models for methane are an essential component in the design of efficient gas turbine combustors. Kinetic models coupled to computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and chemical reactor networks (CRN) provide quick and efficient ways to test the effect of operating conditions, fuel composition and combustor design compared to physical experiments. However, detailed chemical kinetic models are too computationally expensive for use in computational fluid dynamics (CFD). We propose a novel data orientated three-step methodology to produce compact kinetic models that replicate a target set of detailed model properties to a high fidelity. In the first step, a reduced kinetic model is obtained by removing all non-essential species from the NUIG18_17_C3 detailed model containing 118 species using path flux analysis (PFA). This reduced model is so small that it does not retain fidelity in calculations to the detailed model. Thus, it is numerically optimised to replicate the detailed model’s prediction in two rounds; First, to selected species (OH,H,CO and CH4) profiles in perfectly stirred reactor (PSR) simulations and then re-optimised to the detailed model’s prediction of the laminar flame speed. This is implemented by a purposely developed Machine Learned Optimisation of Chemical Kinetics (MLOCK) algorithm. The MLOCK algorithm systematically perturbs all three Arrhenius parameters for selected reactions and assesses the suitability of the new parameters through an objective error function which quantifies the error in the compact model’s calculation of the optimisation target. This strategy is demonstrated through the production of a 19 species and a 15 species compact model for methane/air combustion. Both compact models are validated across a range of 0D and 1D calculations across both lean and rich conditions and shows good agreement to the parent detailed mechanism. The 15 species model is shown to outperform the current state-of-art models in both accuracy and range of conditions the model is valid over.