By the 1960s, Higgins was a POEU branch secretary and was elected to the union's national executive, but he gave up his union work to become IS's full-time national secretary in the early 1970s. In a burst of internal quarrels in the period 1973-76 he left the organisation. He was a founder member of the Workers League, but this organisation soon broke apart. Instead, he built a new life as a journalist, later moving into magazine design. He remained active as a writer and speaker at left wing meetings up until his death and in 1997 published a memoir, More Years for the Locust.
Papers left by Higgins and Al Richardson have been deposited with Senate House Library, University of London.