Link Scheme Holdings Ltd is a company limited by guarantee.  The Members of the company are the 36 companies that issue cards used in ATMs and that provide ATMs.

Link Scheme Holdings Ltd is regulated by the Bank of England and the Payment Systems Regulator.

The Link Scheme Holdings Ltd Board comprises six independent members and the Chief Executive. The current members are–

Sir Mark Boleat

Chairman (independent member)

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Sir Mark Boleat

Chairman (independent member)

Sir Mark Boleat

Sir Mark Boleat was appointed Chairman of Link Scheme Holdings Ltd in March 2017.  For five years until May 2017 he was the Chairman of the City of London’s Policy and Resources Committee, and in this capacity was also Deputy Chairman of TheCity UK (the promotional body for the UK finance industry) and the International Regulatory Strategy Group, a Vice Chair of London Councils and a Board Member of London and Partners. He is also Chairman of the Housing and Finance Institute and the City of London Academy Highbury Grove and a board member of the Centre for London.  

Sir Mark has been chief executive of three major trade associations: the Building Societies Association, the Council of Mortgage Lenders and the Association of British Insurers.  More recently he has held a number of commercial, public sector and charity positions.  He has been Chairman of the Jersey Development Company and the Channel Islands Competition and Regulatory Authorities, a director of four insurance companies and two listed companies (Comino and Countryside Properties) and a member of the National Consumer Council, the Regulatory Policy Committee and the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission.  He has also run his own consultancy business, working for international agencies on housing finance and for corporates and public sector bodies on regulation, public policy and trade association structures and organisation.  He has been Chairman of two charities and a governor of three schools.  Mark was awarded a knighthood for services to the financial services industry and local government in London in June 2017. 

The Rt. Hon. the Lord Hunt of Wirral MBE

(Senior Non-Executive Director and independent member)

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The Rt. Hon. the Lord Hunt of Wirral MBE

(Senior Non-Executive Director and independent member)

The Rt. Hon. the Lord Hunt of Wirral MBE

Lord Hunt is Chairman of the Financial Services Division of the international commercial law firm DAC Beachcroft LLP, where he has been a partner since 1969. David Hunt has been a parliamentarian for over 40 years first as MP for Wirral, then Wirral West, from 1976-1997.  He was a Minister in successive Governments for 16 years and a member of the Cabinets of both Margaret Thatcher and John Major. He became a life peer in 1997 and is the current Chairman of the Association of Conservative Peers.   In addition to his role as Senior Independent Non-Executive Director of Link Scheme Holdings Ltd he is Chairman of the British Insurance Brokers' Association and Chairman of Cornerstone Mutual Services Ltd and the Credit Union Expansion Project.  As Chairman of the Press Complaints Commission from 2011 to 2014, he was the inaugural Chairman of the Independent Press Standards Organisation, before handing over to Sir Alan Moses in September 2014.

John Gill

(independent member)

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John Gill

(independent member)

John Gill

In addition to his role at Link Scheme Holdings Ltd as a Non-Executive Director and Chair of the Risk Committee, John is a Non-Executive director and Chair of the Risk Committee for both Quilter Plc’s UK platform business, Old Mutual Wealth UK Platform and Chetwood Financial, the digital bank.

John spent 31 years with Standard Life in a variety of senior executive and board roles. From 2010 to 2017 he was Chief Risk Officer of Standard Life’s insurance, pensions and savings businesses in UK and Europe. Prior to this his roles included Managing Director, Customer Operations, Managing Director, Finance and Chief Executive and Finance Director of Standard Life Bank.

He was previously a Non Executive Director of Scottish Financial Enterprise.

He qualified as a Fellow of the Faculty of Actuaries in 1990 and graduated in Mathematics at the University of Edinburgh.

Tracey Graham

(independent member)

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Tracey Graham

(independent member)

Tracey Graham

Tracey is a Non-Executive Director of Royal London Group, the largest mutual life insurance and pensions company in the UK, where she is Chair of the Remuneration Committee. Tracey is also the Chair of Investment Funds Direct Limited, a subsidiary company of the Royal London Group. In addition to these roles, Tracey is a Non-Executive Director of Ibstock plc, (FTSE 250 Building Products), and a Non-Executive Director of DiscoverIE plc, (Small Cap Electronic Components). Tracey was Chief Executive of Talaris Limited having led a Management buyout in 2008 from De La Rue plc. She has also held senior positions in banking and insurance with HSBC and AXA Insurance. 

Bill Raynal

(independent member)

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Bill Raynal

(independent member)

Bill Raynal

Bill is a career banker having spent over 30 years with RBS Group where he was part of the wider Group Executive team. Bill undertook various roles, principally in Operations and Customer Service, where he was Director of Operations for the RBS cards business and Managing Director of TRACKER (Network) UK Limited. Bill has also worked overseas in Jersey and Gibraltar, helping create RBS International. Bill helped establish Tesco Bank’s insurance business as Director Insurance Operations and was part of the Tesco Executive team. Latterly Bill was Chief Operating Officer of YourCash Europe Limited, an independent ATM deployer operating ATM’s across Europe.. 

Bill is a Chartered Banker and Fellow of the Institute of Bankers in Scotland and a previous winner of the Institute's Bisland prize. Bill holds an MBA with Distinction from the University of Strathclyde.

Bill’s appointment to the LINK Board is his first Non-Executive role.

Liz Richards

(independent member)

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Liz Richards

(independent member)

Liz Richards

In addition to her role as Link Scheme Holdings Ltd as a Non-Executive Director and Chair of the Audit Committee, Liz is currently a non-executive member and Chair of Audit Committee of Tracsis plc, software and service provider to the transportation industry (also chair of Audit Committee) and Leeds Trinity University (governor board member and member of the audit committee). Liz is the former Group Finance Director of Callcredit Group, the UK credit reference agency, and a founder member of the team which grew the business from start-up to a £150m turnover business, through two private equity buy-outs, including a £500m transaction in 2014. Liz graduated from the University of Leeds with a BA in Modern Languages (French and German). She is a chartered accountant (ACA) having qualified with EY, after starting her career with Lloyds Bank and obtaining the Associate of Institute of Bankers qualification (AIB). In 2016 she was certified as a graduate of the INSEAD International Directors Program (IDP-C) in Fontainebleau.

David Rigney

(independent member)

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David Rigney

(independent member)

David Rigney

David Rigney is a Non-Executive Director of Link Scheme Holdings Ltd. In addition, he is currently a Non-Executive Director at Principality Building Society and ELEXON Limited (wholly owned subsidiary of National Grid). David is the Chair of the Group Risk Committee at both Principality and ELEXON. He has previously held numerous Non-Executive Director roles including Chairman of Bacs Payment Schemes Limited.

David is a qualified accountant and was previously a main Board Executive Director at Nationwide Building Society. Part of David's responsibilities at Nationwide covered Payments including the ATM network. Other roles held at Nationwide included HR Director and Head of Nationwide Direct.

David has a MBA from Manchester Business School and a MA in Sports History from De Montfort University.

John Howells

Chief Executive

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John Howells

Chief Executive

John Howells

John is CEO of the LINK Scheme, the UK's cash machine network and Link Scheme Holdings Ltd. He is a member of the Payment Systems Regulator’s Panel and the LINK Scheme’s Consumer Council.  Previous roles include member of the UK Executive Board of Capgemini Consulting, as lead for the Department for Work and Pensions advisory business, plus a number of major local government transformations.  His early career was with Gemini Consulting’s financial services strategy practice and Lloyds Bank. John has a first degree in Materials Science from Keble College, Oxford and an MBA with Distinction from London Business School.  He is also an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Bankers.

The Board has an Audit Committee, chaired by Liz Richards, a Risk Committee chaired by John Gill and a Remuneration and Nominations Committee, chaired by Lord Hunt.

The Board has established the LINK Consumer Council, chaired by Tracey Graham, comprising representatives of LINK Network Members and independent consumer representatives.

Responsibility for major decisions, including the Rules of the LINK Scheme and setting the Interchange fees, rests with the Board.

The detailed governance arrangements can be viewed here.

The LINK executive team comprises 

  • John Howells (Chief Executive)
  • Mary Buffee (Head of Consumer Affairs)
  • Graham Mott (Head of Strategy and External Relations)
  • Mike Knight (Finance Director)
  • Sue Wallace (Chief Operating Officer)

LINK governance scheme

The companies

The Operator (as defined in the Banking Act) of the LINK Scheme is Link Scheme Holdings Ltd, a company limited by guarantee (company number 10535808). For historic reasons some of the contractual arrangements rest with a separate company, Link Scheme Ltd (company number 08774124), a company limited by shares, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Link Scheme Holdings Ltd. In practice, the two companies operate as a single entity each with same Board of Directors and the same Executive Team.

Responsibilities of Network Members and of the Board

The Network Members of the Scheme commit to a Members’ Agreement, which sets out the rules of the Scheme and responsibility for taking decisions, and a Switching and Settlement Agreement, which governs the mechanics of the Scheme and to which the infrastructure provider, Vocalink, is also a party.

The Board publishes an Annual Report.

The Board and the Network Members have a Policy on the publication of minutes of meetings. All the relevant minutes are available here.

Audit Committee

The Terms of Reference of the Audit Committee are here.

The Audit Committee currently comprises 

  • Liz Richards (Chair)
  • John Gill
  • Bill Raynal

Remuneration and Nominations Committee

The terms of Reference of the Remuneration and Nominations Committee are here.

The Remuneration and Nominations Committee currently comprises 

  • The Rt. Hon. the Lord Hunt of Wirral MBE (Chair)
  • Sir Mark Boleat
  • Tracey Graham
  • Liz Richards (for nomination matters)

Risk Committee

The terms of Reference of the Risk Committee are here.

The Risk Committee currently comprises –

  • John Gill (Chair)
  • Sir Mark Boleat
  • Tracey Graham
  • David Rigney

LINK Consumer Council

The Terms of Reference of the Consumer Council are here.

Its Chair is Tracey Graham.

Find out more about the work of the Consumer Council and read its Annual Report here.

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