This year's Insurance Industry Awards promises to be the most keenly fought to date after receiving a record-breaking number of entries.

A panel of independent experts has whittled down the short list for half the award categories. They will now spend another four days in October judging each of the short-listed submissions. During this time, the candidates have the opportunity to give a presentation to the panel at the offices of Insurance Times.

Other awards, such as General Insurer of the Year, have been voted for by the brokers themselves and the replies are in the process of validation by an independent research company. The awards presentation takes place at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel on December 1.

All guests will be treated to a complete evening's entertainment, including champagne reception, celebrity presenter and a charity casino with all proceeds going to the Birmingham Children's Hospital.