From helping Bollington's Patterson nurse his hangover to relaunching the mag, it's been an interesting seven days


At Insurance Times, we kicked off the day with a full presentation to the team of the exciting relaunch of our magazine and website you see today. Back at the desk, I see the latest FSA complaints data has come in, which shows yet another dramatic leap in the volume of payment protection insurance-related grievances. How much more pain can brokers take? Then, on a lighter note, it’s across to Towergate’s London office for a rendezvous with Broker Network managing director Nick Houghton.


After dropping Blackman Jnr at school, the first call is a visit to Groupama’s London office. Then, after a pitstop with a latte and notebook, the next date is lunch with the Biba top brass. They outline their thinking on industry concerns over the Bribery Act – new guidance confirms corporate jollies are okay but the picture is otherwise very confused.


In Manchester for a pre-Biba conference trip. First stop is with head of Bollington Commercial Chris Patterson, who’s imbibing copious quantities of coffee and water after a night out celebrating a new contract. Then, after a light lunch with Swinton chief Peter Halpin, it’s across to Allianz’s and Brit’s Manchester bases. Back at the office, news breaks of Lonmar property and casualty director Tom Payne’s exit to AJ Gallagher, and the first rumblings emerge from the fall-out from Amanda Blanc’s shake-up of AXA’s commercial team.


A day in the office today, and news reaches us that Towergate has nabbed Heath Lambert’s Aberdeen team – just as the latter reaches the final stage of sales negotiations with AJ Gallagher.


Press day dawns and we’re working flat out on the first issue of the new-look Insurance Times. We hope you like it.

David Blackman is deputy editor of Insurance Times.