Former Tesco Bank CEO swaps bank notes for music notes

Former Tesco Bank boss Higgins grew up in Govanhill, a community where Big Noise now works. Picture: contributed.
Former Tesco Bank boss Higgins grew up in Govanhill, a community where Big Noise now works. Picture: contributed.
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The former chief executive of Tesco Bank has been appointed chairman of a charity that runs the Big Noise programme, which uses music to help children in disadvantaged areas.

Benny Higgins has signed up to Sistema Scotland, joining its board this month and on 12 December taking the chairman reins from Richard Holloway, the organisation’s founder.

The Big Noise programme has grown from working with an initial group of 35 children in Stirling in 2008, to reach more than 2,500 children and young people in four centres across Scotland.

Higgins was earlier this year appointed strategic adviser for the establishment of the Scottish National Investment Bank, and chairs the National Galleries of Scotland.

He said: “I am convinced from my own experience, growing up in both Govanhill, a community where Big Noise now works, and nearby Toryglen, of the transformative power of the arts and music, and the vital importance of ensuring they are inclusive and open to all.

“That is why I am excited to be appointed chairman of Sistema Scotland.”

He also said he will make it his “mission” to continue and grow the charity’s work “for the benefit of some of our most vulnerable children, young people and communities across Scotland”.