A group of Lloyd's underwriting directors and investors were invited to see Rolf Tolle at the end of last year. Tolle called the meeting to outline his thoughts on the market and what the franchise board's objectives were.

One of the investors asked him what plans he had to change the market and his overall feelings towards business practice within the Lloyd's broker market.

Tolle said: "Downstairs on the floor there is a long queue of brokers at one box. They are queuing to see an underwriter, who they have just heard has had a very good lunch and is a bit worse for wear and his intellectual faculties are not at their best. Those brokers will queue all day with one objective in mind: to fleece that underwriter for everything he has got. That is what I have to stop."

Our source said: "When Rolf had finished, I laughed, but the rest just stood in silence."