Shropshire company celebrates 40 years in the insurance world

A family-owned insurance firm is celebrating its 40th anniversary working with businesses across the county and beyond.

Beaumont Lawrence & Co Ltd., based in Shrewsbury, will mark the milestone throughout the rest of the year with a variety of celebrations.

Over the years, the independent commercial broker has built a strong reputation, providing clients with expert guidance and advice.

Barry Lawrence, now the company chairman, started the business in 1973. He followed his father, Douglas Lawrence, into the insurance world after watching him work for many years as regional manager for the Royal Liver in Shrewsbury.

Mr Lawrence began his career with insurance company Brentnall Beard but decided he could offer a more personal service to clients.

He was soon joined by his colleague Tony Beaumont and Beaumont Lawrence was born, first based in Swan Hill.

“I wanted to offer clients a more personal approach,” said Mr Lawrence, whose son Ben Lawrence is now managing director of the company.

“We wanted to focus on giving advice and really getting to know a client’s business needs.

“We started off with medium-sized local businesses and grew bit by bit.

“As a local broker, run by people who live in the area, our work servicing local clients is extremely important to us and we enjoy working with people in our own economy.

“Our company has now grown to deal with all sizes of businesses, large and small and we also deal with large cases outside of Shropshire.”

Mr Lawrence said the company’s aim is to give advice to customers on what they need to protect their business.

He said: “Price is important but the prime job of an insurance broker is to get the clients the insurance to best protect their business.

“Despite seeing a lot of changes in the industry over the years, people still need advice for complicated commercial insurance, which cannot be found online.”

The company quickly out grew its initial Swan Hill premises, moving to Claremont Bank in 1977, then Castle Street in 1988 and to its current premises at Sweetlake Court, Mercian Close, in 2011.

The company was quick to take on board computerization in the early days.

“We took it on long before everyone else, which enabled us to keep a first class record system,” Mr Lawrence said.

“It was just in its infancy and the biggest computer those days was 20 megabytes. We recognised early on it was going to be a big asset to us as an efficiency tool.”

The company now has offices in Shrewsbury and Cheltenham and a team of 17 staff and over the years has taken over or acquired several other insurance brokers, both locally and further afield.

“We have a really great relationship with our clients,” Mr Lawrence said. “We have lost very few clients and that’s only because they have been taken over. We have a lot of respect for our clients and hope they do for us.

“Locally, I cannot think of any other insurance brokers still with its original owners. 40 years is quite a long time for a family business not to sell out or be taken over.”

Mr Lawrence said Beaumont Lawrence is continuing to go from strength to strength.

“I was thrilled when Ben came on board. He brought with him an insight into technology side and the younger thinking that a business needs.

“IT changes all the time and we needed someone with Ben’s ability to push that side. It’s a great satisfaction to me that I do not have to worry about computers any more!”

For Mr Beaumont, now technical director, it is a great achievement to celebrate 40 years as a company.

“We have a lot of clients who have been with us a long time and we want to thank them.

“We have enjoyed working with them a lot and our business has continued to grow.”

Ben, who joined in 1995 after completing his university degree, has grown up with Beaumont Lawrence.

“I started doing the filing and making tea from about the age of 14 and I’ve learned so much from my father and Tony.

“Being part of a family business is a great source of pride for me and to celebrate 40 years in insurance broking and in the beautiful town of Shrewsbury is a real milestone.

“We really want to thank all our clients for their support and look forward to another 40 years.”

For more information about Beaumont Lawrence, call (01743) 236767, email [email protected] or see www.beaumontlawrence.co.uk.

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