Whether it’s whippy ice cream and fish’n’chips in a traditional British seaside setting, or taking in the historic homes and country piles of this green and pleasant land, new figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that international tourists travelled to English regions in record numbers last year.

In the first nine months of 2016, a record-breaking 12.2 million visitors holidayed in English regions outside of London – 4% higher than the same period in 2015. International visitors across England also set a record for spending during this period, up 2% on the previous year to reach the staggering sum of £5.9 billion.

Predictably, summer was the busiest time for visits to the country, with 4.6 million inbound tourists between July and September 2016. Again, spending reached a record breaking £2.9 billion during the summer Q3 period.

Tourism success was not just reserved for England, with visits to Wales shooting up by 12% to 856,000 between January and September. Overseas visitors also spent £1.6billion in Scotland during the same period, with 2.2 million visits making it Scotland’s strongest year for tourism since 2007.

Sally Balcombe, VisitBritain’s chief executive, said: “Inbound tourism is one of our largest export industries and it is very encouraging to see that growth is being spread right across our nations and regions, demonstrating the industry’s increasing importance as a driver of economic growth and jobs.”

Despite economic uncertainties such as the effects of Britain’s exit from the EU and political changes across the world, hoteliers, restaurateurs and bosses across Britain’s hospitality industry can take confidence in these encouraging figures and gear up for what is likely to be another busy summer for tourism.


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As Theresa May suggests Britain will pull out of the EU’s single market and customs union as part of a “swift and clean” Brexit, the UK Freight Transport Association (FTA) has warned Parliament that exiting without first creating an arrangement for “frictionless trade” could lead to expensive customs delays for ports, hauliers and shippers.

The customs union provides a series of uniform tariffs on the import of foreign goods, and prohibits member states from charging tariffs for moving goods across borders within the EU. The worry is that renegotiating the UK’s customs arrangements with the rest of Europe could take years – and that additional clearances needed in the meantime could lead to containers being delayed in port for up to four days. On average, one hour’s delay in port adds £15,000 to the road haulage industry.

The FTA has warned that the UK’s customs authorities will need to carry out a plethora of additional checks to goods imported from the EU – which are currently waved through without significant clearances, but which would need to be treated in the same way as goods from the rest of the world – totalling around 300 million extra import declarations per year. This could create enormous disruption unless thousands of additional staff are hired, at significant cost to UK customs.

FTA deputy chief executive James Hookham said: “Shippers, forwarders and transport operators in the UK have been used to open borders in Europe for 24 years so it’s going to take time to adjust, it can’t just change overnight. …Hopefully, there will be ‘frictionless trade’ between the UK and EU, but if there isn’t, or a prospect there won’t be, then these are the key issues for FTA members.”

It was also warned that the port of Dover may not be big enough to cope with the extra lorries which would need to park, and the containers which would need to be stored whilst their contents are checked. Mr Hookham warned: “Dover doesn’t have the space. Absolutely categorically we should avoid physical checks on our lorries.”

The Government has been urged to start planning how it will fund the extra staff and facilities needed. In response to the FCA’s warnings, chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee Yvette Cooper said: “I’m very concerned about the evidence we have heard and the way this could hit manufacturing.”

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Whether you’re flying on the wings of success or in the early days of trading, with a Business Continuity Plan you can make sure that any problems won’t have too great an impact on your businesses grand plan.

It can take a small amount of your time to put together a strategy, but once you have, it’s one that can be refreshed and updated as necessary.

Insureeasy have outlined some useful steps you can take to make sure your Business Continuity Plan is solid, giving your business a better chance of picking itself up again.

Think negative
This probably goes against most tips for building a strong business, but in this instance it pays to envisage the worst case scenario. Instead of saying “It’ll never happen”, tell yourself “It might happen.” Then if “it” does, it won’t come as such as shock.

Don’t let yourself stumble
Or rather, don’t be the business who suffers for far longer than necessary because you haven’t taken straightforward measures to plan ahead. Below are tips to create a basic Business Continuity Plan that could make all the difference at a critical time of your business operations:

Face your threats
What sort of risks are your business likely to meet? You may be right next to a river where flooding is a very real possibility, or hold a lot of customer data which makes you a golden target for cyber crime.

Line up your defence
Now you know what threatens your business, you’ll have a better idea of what protection to put in place to defend against it.

Gather the troops
Create a team, ideally two people or more, who can manage specific problems around specialist areas such as IT or finance. Then give each team member an area of responsibility at a time of crisis, such as salvage, assessment, emergency arrangements and IT recovery.

The emergency list
This should include the contact details of anyone who is essential to your operation and its recovery. As well as staff, this could include suppliers, banks and insurers.

Business as usual
By creating alternatives to the norm, like a short term lease on temporary premises or spare IT equipment, you can aim for a degree of normality during an upheaval.

The importance of being IT reliant
Most businesses would struggle without their technology capabilities, a fact that can’t be ignored in your Business Continuity Plan. Data back-up on an alternative site can be just one extra measure you take around protecting your IT systems, as well as having someone from your IT department ready to jump into action as part of your planning team.

Do a test run
Having put a plan in place, check it works so you can identify any gaps. Then if you do need it, you’ll be confident that it’s effectiveness. Do this every time your organisation undergoes a significant change.
Alongside a commercial insurance package that’s made to fit your business, a Business
Continuity Plan, like the one above, can offer yet another line of defence for your business protection.


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The great cliché about insurance is that you don’t need it until you need it, and that you’re only getting the most out of your cover if something goes wrong. In an ideal world you’d never need to make a claim on your insurance which is why buying it can sometimes feel like a bit of a thankless task.
Of course, time and time again people discover the hard way that having insurance in place can be very useful when they need to make a claim. Usually this is down to unfortunate but pedestrian situation – such as suffering an accident or a burglary. But every now and then people find themselves making a claim for something they could not possibly have anticipated. Here are 10 of the weirdest (and successful) insurance claims.
1. A Devon livestock owner made a claim after he managed to lose his phone inside the rear end of one of his cows while assisting calving on a dark and stormy night (he was using his phone as a torch). The phone eventually reappeared but no longer worked properly and his insurance company paid out in full.

2. Two holiday makers in Devon received a pay out from their car insurance when their paintwork was damaged by a herd of cows licking their car. What is it with Devon and cows?

3. An Italian woman’s wedding took an unexpected turn when her hand-made wedding dress went up in flames after she stood too close to a barbeque. Thankfully her quick-thinking husband threw her in the sea to put out the blaze but while the bride was fine, her dress was ruined and insurance company paid out 50% compensation.

4. A holiday maker was soaking up the sun, sea and sand in Sri Lanka when a coconut fell on their head. Around 150 people are killed by falling coconuts every year but thankfully this holidaymaker was ‘only’ knocked unconscious and sent to hospital. Her travel insurance actually covered her for falling coconuts and her insurance company paid out in full.

5. A pair of children thoughtfully buried their parent’s video camera in the sand to make sure it didn’t get stolen while they went for a swim. Unfortunately they did too good a job and forgot where they buried it. Good job this was covered by their parents’ insurance!

6. A Christmas shopper was driving home when an oncoming car with a Christmas tree badly tied to its roof took a turn too quickly, causing the tree to launch straight into his bonnet. This left a big dent and even more damage ensued as the driver hit a hedge while attempting evasive action. Not only did the victim of the flying tree receive a full pay out but they also got to keep the tree as its owners never came back for it.

7. It’s not just flying Christmas trees that can cause damage to cars – sometimes flying Smurfs are just as bad! Another motorist had a similar shock when a flat-bed lorry with a carnival float on the back (consisting of a giant fibreglass Smurf and a wooden house) took a corner too quickly and the float came detached, rolling off the lorry and onto his parked car while he was still inside it. This resulted in a very strange insurance claim but a successful one nonetheless!

8. A British holiday maker visiting Athens broke his nose after walking into a bus shelter. He claimed the cause of his accident was the unexpected appearance of a group of bikini-clad women and that this had distracted him. His insurers agreed that this was sufficiently distracting and paid out in full.

9. A pair of shoppers accidentally attempted to park their cars in the same parking space at the same time. While they just about pulled this off without causing an accident, they quickly discovered the hard way that two does not go into one when they realised that they were packed in so tightly that they couldn’t drive back out again, or open their doors to get out. The fire brigade had to rescue the hapless motorists in front of large crowd that had gathered but thankfully their insurance covered everything (except the embarrassment).

10. A couple on holiday in Malaysia got caught out by the local wildlife when some cheeky monkeys stole their clothes, leaving a trail of dresses, t-shirts and underpants all over the nearby rainforest. It might surprise you to know that ‘theft by Monkey’ was covered by their travel insurance and they were covered.

Whilst these insurance claims were very out of the ordinary they were all successful, which just goes to show how useful your insurance can be – you never know when a wild monkey might throw a coconut at you and bury your video camera!

Contact us on 01737377250 or visit for all of your insurance needs.



‘Broker’ is one of those job titles that is hard to pin down, a bit like ‘agent’ or ‘consultant’. The name doesn’t really explain the activity carried out by the professional, unlike more straightforward titles like ‘builder’ or ‘actor’. There is often confusion about what an insurance broker does or does not do.

Put simply, a broker arranges insurance for you. They take the time to understand your individual circumstances, use knowledge and experience to assess which products are best suited to you, help you understand cover, facilitate savings and do the necessary admin. You don’t pay for this service: brokers earn money by getting commission from insurance companies.

There are so many misconceptions out there about what brokers do or do not do. Let’s clear debunk some myths!

  1. Brokered insurance costs more

A broker will not charge you for their service; they are paid in commission by insurance companies who are pleased to have the extra custom. It’s true that the bargain-basement prices you might be quoted online may not be available through a broker: the reason for this is that brokers know from experience that extremely low prices invariably translate into extremely poor service or poor level of cover.


  1. Brokers are on the side of the insurance company

Independence is very important to brokers. They are crystal clear that they provide a service to you and their goal is to find a product that will serve you best. Most brokers use a panel of insurance providers, picking out the most suitable products for you.


  1. Insurance brokers are just a go-between

Brokers do more than just relay information between a client and an insurer. They have in-depth knowledge of their panel of insurance companies and know all the common misunderstandings that can cause problems.  Brokers know how insurance works, inside and out; for example, they might advise that a bundled insurance package would provide better value than purchasing separate policies, or help you clear up any ambiguity about what a particular policy covers.


  1. Arranging insurance online is cheaper

Insurance could be the lifeline that saves your business, so it’s worth ensuring the right cover is in place. Buying online is about form-filling, but there are always grey areas that could leave you open to uninsured loss. Brokers tend to offer insurance at the same prices that are quoted online, but they make sure cover can really be relied on.


  1. Using a broker limits your choice

It’s true that brokers use a panel of insurers, rather than giving you access to every possible provider on the market. However, a broker will still present you with multiple options to choose from, usually with different prices and levels of cover attached. Plus, you get the peace of mind that the panel is made up of credible, trusted insurers who will provide good service if you need to make a claim.


  1. Brokers are only useful in arranging insurance

Not true! Although brokers are commonly associated with the purchase of insurance, a recent change in the law means they now have an expanded ongoing role in helping clients to update the insurer on any changes in their circumstances. They will help you understand what information should be passed to the insurer and ensure it is presented in the right format.


  1. Brokers don’t get involved with insurance claims

If you need to claim on your insurance, a broker can be your best friend to guide you through an often complex process. Their assistance can help to make a claim less stressful, quicker and securing the optimum pay-out.

Are you missing out on the benefits of using a broker?

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Many businesses will probably already know where they stand with regards to contents insurance and employers’ liability, but most of the same organisations, both newly established and longstanding, can be forgiven for approaching the relatively new cyber insurance wave with hesitation.

And not because it’s not now considered one of the more essential forms of business insurance, after all there is no company that isn’t a target if they use computers or devices, but because with fraud and computer misuse now the most common form of crime, it’s difficult to know exactly what cover needs to be included, as all cyber insurance policies can vary.


First things first – review your security
Conversations with your IT systems support or provider are a good start as they will be able to tell you what anti-virus software you currently have in place and how effective this is. If you’re a smaller outfit and you handle this yourself, check to see whether there are better options now which may not have been on the table when you initially installed the software.

This first-level defence is one of the simplest and most effective ways to play it safer online and help prevent  a cyber attack, but it’s by no means able to shoulder the entire burden that cyber attacks are capable of inflicting, as tactics are forever developing in order to get around these obstacles.


Check your current insurance
Does your existing insurance include cyber cover? If it doesn’t, it should be considered as a matter of some urgency. If it does, a closer look will help you decide whether it’s adequate, or if it’s more of a “token” addition that has enough exclusions to render it useless in the event of a claim.

How do you know what you’re looking for? Here’s an overview of the kind of features that can be included in a cyber insurance policy:


Data liability – There’s a lot of responsibility in holding customer data, as this could be personal or sensitive data that might be used to their detriment. If you lose this data, you can be held responsible, and be liable to pay compensation costs to anyone who’s been affected, which depending on the size of your data base, could be more than you could financially handle if it weren’t for your insurance. On top of this, you will be expected to pay for your own defence costs if the complaints end up in the court room.


Regulatory coverage – Government or regulatory bodies may also have something to say and want to take action themselves around any data breaches, if it’s discovered that lapses in security or other careless action may have contributed to loss of data. Often this is only applicable to civil fines and penalties.


Remediation coverage – There may well be other ramifications following a data loss, such as forensic costs, credit monitoring of those affected and PR crisis management. This is where remediation coverage comes into play.


Information assets coverage – This covers the computers, devices and any other equipment affected through corruption of technical failure, and can help restore and repair these assets to allow the company to get back up and running.


Business Interruption  – Depending on the severity of a breach or system breakdown, there may be a period where daily operations become near impossible temporarily, and business interruption can make up for lost revenue during this time, providing a realistic recovery period has been estimated at the time of purchasing the policy. This is why it’s a good idea to really think about how long it would take to get back to full operation following serious IT issues.


Extortion coverage – One method of criminal money-making in the cyber world is to either steal data or threaten to crash a company’s website indefinitely and demand a payment to avoid this. Extortion cover is designed to support a company financially if they respond to these demands.


Check the Fine Print
When you’ve decided on a policy that you think is going to work for you and includes everything you deem to be essential for your business, be sure to read through it thoroughly to make sure that there are no exclusion which are going to make a claim difficult. Such exclusions might focus on the specifics of your company’s network security – it’s this fine print you need to be wary of.

If you’re still not clear on cyber insurance, our experts at InsureEasy can help. Our friendly team can offer you advice whether you have an insurance policy or not. Call us on 01737377250 or visit




A survey of almost 3000 British motorists carried out by high street broker Swinton showed that many who hold comprehensive car insurance are not sure what their cover entails, with only 33% of those in question spending 30 minutes or less on researching different policies on the market.

30% admitted that some of the answers they gave when applying for insurance might not be entirely accurate, and a quarter of those survey will only skim read their policy.

Richard Beaven, Distribution Director at Swinton Insurance said: “We were surprised at just how little attention is being paid to policy documents by motorists, and concerned that so many guestimate answers. The problems this can cause usually only come to light when you need to claim, which can be a difficult time without the added headache of finding you’re not appropriately covered. Not only that, but mistaken claims drive up the cost of motor insurance for everyone – not just those directly affected.”

Beaven’s concerns were only validated by the research results, which showed that only 1 in 10 of those who’ve made a claim in the last three years on their comprehensive policy were happy with the result.

As for general assumptions made around car insurance, the figures were not much more encouraging. One in three drivers who had purchased a comprehensive policy believed they have full coverage when driving someone else’s car, with 14% not knowing either way. In fact, this feature is specific to factors such as a drivers age and experience, and is not automatically included as standard on a comprehensive insurance policy. When another driver is covered, it is for third party only.

4 in 10 drivers believe they will not have to pay any excess if another driver deemed to be at fault, although in some circumstances this can be reimbursed further down the claims process.

Despite the name, third party fire and theft doesn’t automatically cover a vehicle regardless of its location at the time of the theft, yet over half of the motorists in questions either believed that it does or weren’t sure. If for example a policyholder states that their car is kept in a garage overnight and it’s stolen from a public car park, then the claim may not be upheld.

Beaven noted that the survey results showed gaps in car insurance knowledge that the industry collectively needed to fill,

“As an industry, we need to be doing more to help educate motorists about key policy areas to empower drivers to make the right decisions about their individual insurance needs. This will go a long way to providing peace of mind for the nation’s motorists and ensure more affordable premiums.”

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