Independent Insurance has beefed up its top management tier with a number of new board appointments.

John Blakemore, group company secretary, becomes a main board director, responsible for corporate development.

And there are four new faces on the board of the main operating subsidiary, Independent Insurance Company Limited.

They are: Peter Hadden (international), Andy Hawkes (marketing and ebusiness), Ian Helmore (London underwriting) and Neil Williams (operations).

Chief executive Michael Bright said: “We're currently facing exciting challenges. This strengthening of the group's management team will help carry us forward into our next phase of growth.”

Rating agency Standard & Poor's has reaffirmed an A rating for the insurer.