Insurance and reinsurance marketplace Lloyd’s of London has announced that it plans to reopen its London headquarters and underwriting room on September 1, with new safety measures in place.
The Lloyd’s underwriting floor at 1 Lime Street has been closed since March 19 due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis in the UK.
But with lockdown restrictions set to be significantly eased next month and many non-essential businesses reopening, Lloyd’s is now looking to resume operations at its headquarters.
However, it noted that the September 1 date remains subject to government approval and the continued easing of lockdown measures.
If given the green light, the plans would see Lloyd’s reduce the capacity of the underwriting room to 45% in order to adhere to social distancing guidelines, and install clear screens on underwriting boxes.
Opening hours are also being reviewed, and other measures under consideration include new deep cleaning practices, one-way and queuing systems, and temperature-check thermal cameras.
In addition, Lloyd’s is working with the market to determine a class of business rota system to help manage capacity in the underwriting room.
And in parallel with these changes, plans to improve digital connectivity have been accelerated with a virtual room to enable brokers and underwriters to connect online in a similar way to the physical location.
A number of digital platforms are currently being tested with an eye to launching the virtual room on September 1.
To support this, a help desk will be set up at Lloyd’s to assist market participants in training and troubleshooting, and digital booths will be installed to allow for confidential virtual meetings.