This week saw Tom Watson, the UK’s former Shadow Culture Secretary and Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, named as the new chair of UK Music.

Watson (pictured) succeeds outgoing chair Andy Heath in the role. Watson, who stepped down from Parliament at the December 2019 General Election after almost two decades as an MP, has been appointed by the Board of UK Music following an extensive recruitment process.

Watson said he would look to secure the maximum support for the music industry to combat the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and return the sector to growth “as soon as possible”.

UK Music is the umbrella body for the commercial music industry in the country. Head to our sister site TheTicketingBusiness.com for the full story on Watson’s appointment.

Caroline Buckland has started a new role as fan engagement lead at Premier League football club Chelsea.

Buckland joined Chelsea in January 2019 as a marketing manager, having previously worked as a marketing executive at fellow Premier League club Manchester City.

Dirk Dreyer has been named general manager of Berlin’s recently-opened Verti Music Hall.

The venue has a capacity of 4,350 and is operated by AEG. Dreyer formerly served as a manager at Sony Music and he will report directly to AEG Germany vice-president Uwe Frommhold in his new role.

Verti Music Hall opened 18 months ago and the role of general manager is a newly-created one.

Steve Griffiths has been appointed chief executive of the International Wheelchair Rugby Federation (IWRF).

Griffiths played a major role in brokering the partnership between the IWRF and World Rugby in 2010, when he was serving as head of organisation development for the latter. Griffiths retired from World Rugby in 2016 after 18 years of service.

Griffiths said: “There will be significant challenges as I join at an unprecedented time with all sport being affected by the COVID-19 virus, including the postponement of the Paralympic Games for the safety of athletes and all involved. Having worked closely with the organisation in an advisory capacity since 2010, I am looking forward to join what I know is a great sporting family, and trust that I can contribute to delivering the goals set out in the 2019-2024 strategic plan.”

Do you have news of an appointment that we should know about? Get in touch by emailing news.editor@thestadiumbusiness.com and we’ll include it in our next round-up.

Image: Rwendland