BORN IN WEST DORSET - CHAMPIONING WEST DORSET
Born at the Yeatman Hospital in Sherborne in September 1981, Chris enjoyed a rural upbringing at Folke in Dorset on his parents' family farm where he is 4th generation; attending primary schools at Holwell and Bishops Caundle before secondary education at The Gryphon School, Sherborne. He still lives at the family farm, giving his parents hands-on support while pursuing a professional career in London, before being selected as Prospective Conservative MP for West Dorset on 28th September 2019.
Chris didn't go to university, instead aged 18 he began his railway career with a job as a train guard on the Waterloo to Exeter line, then as a manager for the Bournemouth to Weymouth line. In 2003, he moved from Sherborne to work with major rail operators in London, across the UK and then to Europe in 2010. Returning to the UK railway in 2012 where he became Head of Service Strategy for the railway in the South West. He progressed to lead a team of 300 running the UK's best performing train company, creating more train services and better connections for Dorset, whilst delivering the multi-million-pound upgrade of London Waterloo station - the largest in Europe.
His public service career began as a teenager aged 18 when he became Parish Clerk for Bishops Caundle in 1998/99, when he was awarded the young person’s merit award for commitment to the local community. He was elected to West Dorset District Council to represent villages to the south of Sherborne in 2013 and was Association Chairman of West Dorset Conservative Association for three and a half years until August 2019.
A Christian, Chris has been a member of Folke, Holwell and Sherborne Parochial Church Councils and is an occasional organist at Folke, Bishops Caundle and other local churches. He learned to bell-ring at St James’ Church Longburton, taught at Buckland Newton and Puddletown and often rings at Holwell or Bishops Caundle.
In his spare time, Chris enjoys travelling, classical music, national politics and rural affairs and has held various voluntary roles including Chairman of the Institution of Railway Operators, Councillor of Southwark Cathedral and Director/Trustee of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport as well as being a Freeman of the City of London.
Member of Parliament for West Dorset
Elected in the 12th December 2019 General Election
Other positions held:
Member Transport Select Committee
Chairman APPG for South Western Railway
Trustee Jurassic Coast Trust
Caucus Member Conservative Environment Network