Step into my office: College honours former students Belle and Sebastian

The band produced their album "Tigermilk" at the college (Picture by Marisa Privitera)

ONE of Scotland’s most successful bands of the 21st Century is set to receive a top honour from the college where it all began.

Belle & Sebastian will receive a Fellowship in recognition of the group’s amazing achievements in music.

In1992, in an effort to make its students more employable in the recording industry, Stow College set up its own music label – Electric Honey.

Four years later the band Belle & Sebastian were signed up releasing their first album with an initial limited pressing of just 1000 vinyl copies.

Within a decade the group had released several hit albums and received various accolades, including ‘Best Newcomer’ at the 1999 Brit Awards, nominations for both the Mercury Music Prize and Ivor Novello Award in 2004, and the title of ‘Scotland’s Greatest Band’ in a 2005 poll by The List.


The group will collect its Fellowship at Stow College’s annual Graduation ceremony, which takes place on today (Fri) at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall.

David Hughes, Head of Creative Industries at Stow College, said: “Belle & Sebastian is a prime example of the success of Electric Honey. The band is recognised throughout the world and was even described by Rolling Stone magazine as ‘one of indie rock’s most celebrated groups during the 1990s and 2000s.’”

“Everyone at Stow College felt it was important to honour that amazing achievement with a Fellowship, which is a mark of distinction and recognition of the contribution the band has made to the college’s success. For other Creative Industries students and indeed all students who are graduating, it’s incredibly inspiring to share the stage with a band that started in the same place.”

Belle & Sebastian will be joined Sandra White MSP. The politician will deliver this year’s address to students who’ve successfully completed an HNC, HND, Advanced Diploma or TUC National Education course.

Dr. Robert McGrory, Principal of Stow College, commented: “Belle & Sebastian is just one example of the many success stories fromStowCollege. At this year’s graduation ceremony we’ll congratulate hundreds of students from many different backgrounds who’ve each overcome their own challenges and obstacles to get where they are today.”

“Some of them could go on to be the next international success story. Others will find their dream careers they set out to pursue when they started studying at Stow College. What is clear is the passion, enthusiasm and drive that existed at Stow College when Belle & Sebastian released their first album in 1996, continues to flourish today.”