The Licensed Trade Charity (LTC), the industry charity supporting drinks and hospitality professionals in need of emotional support, specialist advice and financial assistance, has announced that Chris Welham has been appointed as the organisation’s new Chief Executive Officer.

Chris has worked in hospitality for over 27 years and has held a variety of senior operations, executive and board-level roles in listed, private, not-for-profit, and family businesses. Currently Chief Customer Officer at S4labour and formerly CEO of Wadworth, Chris will assume the role at the beginning of March.

Commenting on the appointment, Ludovick Halik, Licensed Trade Charity chairman, said: “I’m delighted to announce that Chris Welham will be joining the Licensed Trade Charity as its new Chief Executive Officer. With his extensive experience, deep understanding of the sector and undoubted passion for the people driving every facet of the licensed trade, it’s clear Chris is the ideal custodian of this historic institution.

“Chris’ vision for the LTC is an inspiring one and the board is confident that under his management, the charity will continue to adapt and grow to effectively meet the needs of this ever-changing industry and the people working in it.”

Chris is also currently a non-executive director (NED) at Frederic Robinson Ltd and non-executive chair at KAM Media, and he also previously served as a board director of the Pub Governing Body.  His charity experience includes time as an industry advisor to the BII where he was also a NED of the BII Awarding Body.

Chris is set to succeed current CEO Jim Brewster, who will be retiring on April 30th, 2024, after 16 years at the Licensed Trade Charity. Brewster will hand over the reins on the 1st March 2024 and will continue to support the organisation during the transition period.  During his tenure, sector awareness of the charity has risen from 3% to 27%, and he has been a true inspiration to those who have worked under his leadership.

Jim Brewster said: “I am proud of all that we have achieved at the Licensed Trade Charity and our three schools in my time here, and I am especially proud of the part I have played in the career development of so many of our staff.  I am confident that Chris will lead our organisation into an exciting future, and I wish him and the whole team the very best for the future.”

The charity has been helping individuals in need from across the licensed hospitality sector since 1793. Today, the charity assists more people than ever with practical, emotional, and financial support, in addition to running three successful independent schools.

Commenting on his appointment, Chris said “I have long admired the work that the charity does and am thrilled to be taking on the role of CEO of this great organisation.  The LTC has been around for over 200 years providing incredible support to people in our sector and I am very much looking forward to working with the team to continue to make a difference to people in need.”