What do you do when you manage to bring the number of computer systems down from seven to two? Beat the box is the unlikely answer if you work at AXA Insurance.

AXA chief executive Peter Hubbard led staff in a mass beating of old, out-dated computer equipment to celebrate a rare occurrence of an IT project in the financial services sector going to plan.

It seems that AXA staff wearing Doc Marten boots and wielding baseball bats have been having the time of their lives, beating the life out of equipment that has blighted their lives through crashes, misfiles and other assorted infuriating gremlins.

Hubbard said: "I turned off the ICL machine. The machine takes up a whole building. One disk drive is six inches by four inches but has less storage than my mobile phone - how technology has changed."