The cost of insuring fine and contemporary art is expected to rise after Hiscox revealed that the value of paintings is continuings to soar.

According to the Hiscox Art Market Research (HAMR) Index, art values are significantly rising in paintings which have a strong connection to Britain.

One big earner, revealed the index, was English sporting paintings, where value increased 9% over the past year. Celebrity-related art has also proved popular. An iconic Twiggy image was recently bought by Towergate director Andy Homer for £5,400.

Contemporary art fared less well, rising only 2.2% in value in the past year after an increase of over 10% in 2005.

Charles Dupplin, head of the art and private client division at Hiscox, said: "Regular revaluations remain the best weapon against underinsurance but can be time consuming and expensive. The HAMR index aims to fill this gap."