16 December 2015
David Eric Laing DL MA RIBA

HM Lord Lieutenant for Northamptonshire
Pro Chancellor Northampton University

David was born on 28th March 1945, the second son of Sir Kirby Laing, the elder son of Sir John Laing, who founded the John Laing Construction Company in its modern form, establishing the main centre of the business in North London whilst still retaining important ties to the original base in Carlisle.

David grew up in an environment steeped in the building construction industry and has maintained a firm interest and a broad base of experience in construction.

He was appointed as HM Lord-Lieutenant for Northamptonshire in 2014 and Pro-Chancellor of Northampton in 2014.

David is on the Court of the Worshipful Company of Paviors, being Master in 2006, and led an active life in the City. He is a Life Patron of the Royal Academy, Fellow of the Royal Zoological Society, member of Historic Houses Association and a member of VSCC, AMOC, HSCC, HRDC motor sports club.

He has maintained his strong interest in hockey, which he played at International Combined University, County and Regional levels, but now enjoys tennis, golf, skiing and motor sport, successfully completing the Round the World Rally in 2000, Classic Le Mans, Le Mans Legends and four Mille Miglias as well as many races at Silverstone, Donnington, Mallory Park and the RAC Historic Rally.

Married in 1968 to Mary, they have five children (four sons and a daughter) and at last count, nine grandchildren.

St Lawrence College, Ramsgate (1958 – 1963)

  • 10 O-Level passes (1961)
  • 4 A-Level passes (1963)

Bartlett School of Architecture, University College, London (1964 – 1969)

  • BA Architecture (1967)
  • MA Hons Architecture (1969)

Professional Qualification

  • RIBA (1971)

He was educated at St Lawrence College, Ramsgate, a school established on a strong evangelical background, and achieved at a high level educationally and on the games field, gaining first team colours in rugby, tennis, swimming and hockey, competing at County Schools’ level in swimming and hockey. A good musician, playing piano, guitar and clarinet, he led the school choir, the rock and the folk group.

David went to The Bartlett School of Architecture at University College, London, where he studied for his BA Honours Architecture degree and subsequently achieved his Master’s degree. From UCL, he joined the West End office of Sir Basil Spence Bonnington and Collins and completed his architectural training for his RIBA award. Whilst with Spence, he met Anthony Bryant, with whom he formed a private practice based in Hertfordshire, which they ran for fifteen years. David was also a Director of GHM Rock Townsend Architects, one of the country’s largest architectural practices, until 1999.


In 1996, he joined the board of Country and Metropolitan PLC as Chairman, responsible for resolving board disputes and establishing proper corporate reporting and procedures. The company floated on OFEX and in 1999 was established as a main list quoted PLC. The company proved very successful, growing both organically and by acquisition, and was itself taken over in 2005. David subsequently joined the board of Gladedale, the successful bidder.

He is a director of Eskmuir Properties plc.

David has been on the board of a number of companies including New Zoo Developments, with Sir David Attenborough where he proposed to build London’s major aquarium and rain forest conservation dome at Regents Park. He was involved in a number of conservation based heritage proposals from Scotland to Bristol and was instrumental in the birth of the golf course at Kingsbarns, St Andrews, and the Santa Maria course outside Marbella. He was a founding director of Musicale plc which provided music based holiday courses in 24 towns around the country from a base in Hertfordshire.

​He is and has been a trustee for both local and national charities; County Chairman of St John Ambulance in Hertfordshire and also Northamptonshire.

He was Chairman of the Northamptonshire Community Foundation providing much needed support to grass roots charities and groups. He is a patron of the Hope Centre .

He is President of St Andrew’s Hospital the country’s leading mental healthcare hospital, and chaired the Pension Fund, and was a trustee of Grove House Hospice.

He was a trustee of the Youth Sports Trust, and is on the board of the National Hockey Foundation and the Northamptonshire Association of Youth Clubs (president), reflecting his interest in supporting young people particularly through sport and activity.

David was a trustee of the Education Fellowship Foundation, a group of rapidly growing academies and a trustee of the United Church Schools Trust.

He is chair of the charity ‘Adrenalin Alley’, Europe’s largest indoor skate park and was on the board of the Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership.

He is President of the London University Hockey Club. He chairs the Sir Kirby Laing Foundation, a major grant giving charity,  and the David Laing Foundation.

  • Custos rotulorum for the county of Northamptonshire
  • Fellow Royal Zoological Society
  • Court of Benefactors  Oxford University
  • Life Member National Trust

Grant-making charitable trusts



  • Sir Kirby Laing Foundation
  • The David Laing Foundation    


  • Beatrice Laing Trust   

Charitable trusts and organisations



  • Adrenaline Alley (2010 - )
  • Northamptonshire Community Foundation (2005 – 2014)
  • Rural Development Commission, Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire (1988 – 1996) 
  • St Andrew’s Hospital Pension Fund (2011 - 2015 )
  • St John Ambulance, Hertfordshire (1998 – 2005)
  • St John Ambulance, Northamptonshire (2010 – 2014)


  • Beechwood Park School - Governor (1980 – 1991)
  • Grove House Hospice, St Albans (1988 – 1995)
  • International Student House (1996 – 2012)
  • National Hockey Foundation (2002 - )
  • Northamptonshire Association of Youth Clubs - President (2005 - )
  • Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership - Vice Chairman (2008 – 2013)
  • The Education Fellowship Foundation (2012 – 2014)
  • United Church Schools Trust (2009 – 2012)
  • Youth Sports Trust/Youth Sports Direct (1998 – 2010)

Appeal groups

  • Peterborough Cathedral 900     
  • Thorpe Hall Hospice, Peterborough – Chair


  • Army Benevolent Fund, Northamptonshire
  • Girlguiding Northamptonshire
  • The Hope Centre, Northampton
  • Northamptonshire Community Foundation
  • Red Cross, Northamptonshire
  • Royal Academy of Arts, London


  • St Andrews Hospital
  • London University Hockey Club
  • Magistrates Association (Honorary President of Northamptonshire Branch)
  • Northamptonshire ACRE (Honorary President)
  • Northamptonshire Association of the Blind (County President)
  • Northamptonshire CPRE (County President)
  • Northamptonshire Historic Churches Trust (County President)
  • Northamptonshire Scouts (County President)
  • SSAFA (County President)