Immediate Past Master

Chris porter

Chris was educated at Eastbourne College and began his working life in 1979 in the warehouses of Rawlings Voight & Co. In 1984, he moved to the family firm of Porter & Laker in a nationwide sales role offering specialist shipping, distribution & warehousing sales to the UK’s wine and spirits Trades.

Following the takeover of the family firm by Ferry Freighting in 1992 – who were themselves acquired by JF Hillebrand in 1998 – Chris became Director of the UK company, with specific responsibility for the Porter & Laker division, which remained a specialist freight forwarding service to the independent wine & spirits trades until his departure at the end of 2017.

In 2018 Chris became CEO of The Benevolent (now The Drinks Trust), having already served for 20 years as a Trustee, and its Chairman in 2013 & 2014. Whilst in this role, he helped to raise the profile of the charity, increasing corporate partnerships and the number of beneficiaries who received help and support.

In 2019 Chris set up his own consultancy, LSQ Consulting Ltd, offering business development and sales services to drinks forwarders.   

Chris is an active member of the Wine Trade Sports Club (WTSC) and was President in 2000/2001; he continues to organise and participate in several of the Club’s annual golf fixtures. He was also a member of the trade association The Wine & Spirit Trade Club (formerly the Under-40 Club) from 1987-1992 and was its Chairman in 1990.  

Chris joined the Distillers by patrimony in 2000 and was elected to the Court in 2015. He was a member of the Charity Committee from 2010-2020 and helped shape the Distillers’ philanthropic future direction and strategy in supporting key beneficiary partners. Chris is also a keen golfer and enjoys participating in Distillers’ golfing fixtures when he can, as well as having a first-rate attendance record at Livery events in his time as a Liveryman.

Chris feels very blessed, saying: “Despite the challenges of working in logistics, I’ve been extremely lucky in my career and have enjoyed it enormously, working with incredibly dedicated teams. The people I’ve met and the friends I’ve made in 40 years in this fantastic industry have made it a total pleasure. The best thing for me is that it is far from over. Indeed, what better way to continue than to have the honour and privilege of being Master of this wonderfully active Company – particularly in such a special year, being the 350th anniversary of the granting of our Livery and the first time we have had a Lord Mayor since 1845.”

Chris is married to Alison and they live in Oxted, Surrey.