Two from Leeds for Halifax

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The Independent Online
Only two executive directors of Leeds Permanent Building Society will join the board of Halifax when the societies merge and convert to bank status.

Roger Boyes, Leeds' chief executive, will become group finance director, while five non-executive directors from Leeds will join the 20-strong board.

The rest of the Leeds directors will cease to be directors on 31 July if members of both the societies approve the merger.

The announcement from Halifax follows the recent approval by the High Court of the society's plan to give up to £10bn worth of free shares to customers. The payout will happen when the merged societies convert to plc status, scheduled for two years' time.

Sir Timothy Kitson, former parliamentary private secretary to Edward Heath, the former Prime Minister, will become joint vice chairman of Halifax.

Prue Leith, the wine writer and entrepreneur, joins from Leeds as a non- executive director, along with Arnold Ziff, Philip Rogerson and Derek Cook. Gren Folwell, group finance director of Halifax, will become managing director. Halifax has announced that its chairman, Jon Foulds, will stay in his post, as will the chief executive, Mike Blackburn.