What Is A Groom Porter?
In days of old a groom porter oversaw the lodgings and furnishings of the royal high court. He also saw to it that, should dice or cards be played in the royal court, everyone playing had what they needed. This included tables, chairs, the dice themselves, and decks of cards. Later, when disputes arose during the gambling in the high court, as will generally happen wherever people gamble, the porter was given the duty of settling the disputes. Being seen as an independent body, the man was allowed to decide a final winner, and settle the matter once and for all. An amusing fact is that gambling was only permitted in the royal high court during certain periods of time, and that the king himself would sometimes like to take part.
Since it was frowned upon for the king the gamble, the groom porter would announce to the court that the king was out, meaning that he was not in the court. Those involved would obligingly turn a blind eye to the king playing cards or dice. When the king was done gambling, the porter would announce his majesty is at home, at which point everyone would forget they had seen the king gambling.
Evolution Of The Job
As time went by the job became more and more focused around the gambling, and less around the actual furniture, which had been the original job. The name groom porter soon became associated with dice and cards, and it was not long until the job soon lost any association to chairs altogether. Eventually the porter was overseeing gambling in other areas of London, being given the duty of dealing with licensing in gambling establishments, and generally seeing that the establishment ran according to regulations. Gambling was, of course, eventually banned from the high court altogether, and the groom porter office removed from the premises entirely. Other gambling areas of London and the regulating of these places, however, still remained the duty of the porter.
Over time the term has evolved and changed, and today can more or less said to be any owner of a gambling hall or casino. Similar duties still apply, with the job requiring that all aspects of the establishment be overseen. Furnishings will still be organised, as well as dice, cards, and whatever else might be needed which is never the case with your favourite Canadian online slots. Today, of course, the job will likely be designated to others, who will perform the duties on behalf of the owner.
It is interesting to note that it is still the tradition in many casinos that the groom porter personally be involved in resolving any disputes that may arise, should a gambler in the casino have problems with the proceedings. This is generally considered a courtesy, however, and most owners will only have a real interest if it is a high stakes game that threatens the reputation of the casino. This job in most cases falls to a manager, or a dedicated security and complaints office.