Ecclesiastical Insurance is gearing up for a massive push into the industrial insurance market.

The insurer is seeking to appoint another six underwriters to complete a ten-strong team. Paul Williams, who was formerly with Iron Trades, and Bill Redhead, who was formerly with Lombard, have already joined. The insurer has also made two internal appointments.

Ecclesiastical, which had gross written premiums of £216m last year, will be giving the ten-strong team delegated authority to underwrite business from £5,000 upwards.

But realistically, it is targeting premiums between £5,000 and £50,000.

The insurer, best known as a church specialist which accounts for 25% of its book, hopes intermediaries will be attracted to the new venture by the service standards shown in the insuring of independent schools and nursing homes where it is also market leader.

“Research shows that the spate of mergers and acquisitions in the insurance world has had a devastating effect on service levels,” said spokesperosn Brian King.

“We have a long established record in risk management and large complicated properties,” he said.