Sir Christopher left LWT in February with pounds 9m of shares following the takeover by Granada. At NFC he will work two or three days a week and be paid a salary of pounds 200,000 a year. He is on a 12-month rolling contract.
The appointment goes some way towards solving the management gap at the top of the company. NFC has been without a chief executive since August, when Peter Sherlock resigned after 18 months in the job.
Mr Watson said the company was making good progress in the search for a chief executive and that internal and external candidates were under consideration.
The front-running internal candidate is Robbie Burns, managing director of UK transport and logistics, who resigned in May after 23 years at NFC, only to rescind his decision when Mr Sherlock left.
Commenting on Sir Christopher's appointment, Mr Watson said: 'I approached the non- executive directors in March saying I would like to retire at the end of the year when I'm 60. I first approached Sir Christopher in June and I'm delighted to welcome him as my successor.'Reuse content