Douglas Insurance Thorntons
Simon Gilbert

Member Article

Douglas Insurance talked up in parliament

A Warwickshire-based insurance broker has been praised before parliament as a leading national example of best practice.

Douglas Insurance Service, based in Cross Street, Rugby has been included in the British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) 2013 Manifesto which was launched in the House of Commons to an audience of Ministers, MPs, Lords, senior government officials.

The firm, which has been based in the town since 1929, was chosen from thousands of members nationwide as a leading example of how brokers help customers.

It was selected for the way in which it handled the challenges surrounding an arson attack at Rugby-based bicycle shop Thorntons Cycle Centre.

Using local knowledge and connections, Douglas Insurance was able to assist Thorntons in finding new premises and begin trading again in under two weeks.

Adrian Sutton, managing director of Douglas Insurance Service, said: “Very few people realise the level of work which goes into dealing with a claim of this size and complexity, so it was extremely gratifying to see our work heralded as a leading industry example on this sort of stage.

“We were able to tap into local contacts and knowledge which larger, national firms simply would not have had access to.

“We were able to negotiate tenancy at an alternative site within days because of our existing relationships in the area.

“While insurance would have covered loss of profit, it would not necessarily have continued to pay the wages of the employees while the business was closed down, so by acting so quickly we were able to safeguard those jobs.

“If a company is closed down for long periods they are likely to lose customers to competitors but Thornton’s has achieved nearly 90 per cent of its usual turnover in the 18 months from the day of the fire – and that is largely down to having the firm up and trading again so quickly.”

Thornton’s Cycle Centre has since been able to re-locate from the temporary base back to its previous home, which has now been refitted, on Cambridge Street.

Dave Thornton, partner of Thorntons Cycle Centre, said: “At every stage, Douglas Insurance Service was there to support us, progress chase and help with the claim negotiations.

“On the day of the fire, we were approached by a Birmingham company who wanted to charge us £10,000 to sort the claim out for us.

“Douglas Insurance did everything the other company had promised and more, and didn’t charge a penny, it was all part of the service.

“Even when we were back in our refurbished shop, Adrian Sutton was there, monitoring trade, helping with building snags and finalising the claim.”


Picture caption (l/r): Adrian Sutton, Douglas Insurance, with Dave Thornton, Thorntons Cycle Centre.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Simon Gilbert .

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