Bruce Carnegie-Brown, the chairman of Lloyd's of London and vice-chairman of Santander Banking Group, will become the sixth chairman of MCC next year, when he succeeds the current incumbent, Gerald Corbett.
Carnegie-Brown has been a Full Member of MCC since 1997 and joined the club's Finance committee in October 2019. His appointment is subject to approval by MCC Members at the 2021 Annual General Meeting, whereupon he will take office in September 2021, at the end of Corbett's six-year term.
He is set to take over at a tricky period of MCC's 233-year history, with the club undergoing a multi-million pound refurbishment of the Compton and Edrich Stands at Lord's, and navigating its way through the Covid-19 pandemic that allowed for just one first-class fixture in 2020, the Bob Willis Trophy Final in September.
Although MCC's pockets are sufficiently deep to withstand the short-term implications of this year's £30 million loss of earnings, there was some disquiet in the ranks at the decision to offset this by offering 350 life memberships to members of the public who wished to jump the club's infamous two-decade-long waiting list.
According to a report in the Daily Mail, the home secretary Priti Patel is one of those who took up the opportunity, and Corbett faced a protest from some members this summer who felt that the club's traditions had been sacrificed for short-term gain.
"It is a huge privilege to be proposed to Members as the next Club Chairman," Carnegie-Brown said. "Notwithstanding the extraordinary challenges of this year, our Club has proven to be very resilient and is well placed for the return of Members and visitors to Lord's as soon as this is permitted. I look forward to meeting Members of the Club and to earning their trust and support".
As chairman, Carnegie-Brown is set to work closely with Chief Executive & Secretary Guy Lavender to help steer the club through what it described as an "unprecedented and uncertain 18 months". In addition to his current roles, he has previously held senior positions at 3i Group plc, Marsh & McLennan Companies Inc, J.P. Morgan & Company and Bank of America.
Robert Leigh, MCC Trustee and former Treasurer, who led the selection process said: "We conducted a thorough assessment and interview process with the help of executive search consulting firm, Spencer Stuart, and involving the Trustees, the Treasurer, Chairs of Principal Committees and elected members of the MCC Committee.
"From the many excellent applicants, it became clear to all of us that Mr Carnegie-Brown will be an outstanding Club Chairman. He brings a wealth of board-level experience from various organisations across banking, finance, arts and the charity sector that will be of great benefit to us all. We look forward to welcoming him to the position in 2021".
Current MCC Chairman, Gerald Corbett, said: "I think Bruce will be a fantastic Chairman and I'm looking forward to working closely with him to ensure an orderly handover at the end of the committee year in September".
He will become the sixth person to hold the post following its creation in 2000. Sir Michael Jenkins (2000-2001), Lord Alexander of Weedon (2001-2004), Charles Fry (2004-2009), Oliver Stocken (2009-2015) and Corbett (2015-2021) are his predecessors. The club's rules stipulate that a chairman may serve a maximum of two three-year terms, and as with all non-executive roles at MCC, the position is not remunerated.