Paul Ginever, Architect, Plan A UK Ltd
A team of architects and building surveyors, Plan A is committed to the development of efficient, comfortable and environmentally balanced buildings. Focussing on carefully considered and detailed design, they are engaging with RIBA’s 2030 Climate Challenge to help achieve the UK’s carbon efficiency targets, and to create buildings that are healthy and cared for by their occupants.
Plan A was established in 2005 by Jason Aldous MRICS (Chartered Building Surveyor) who was then joined by Paul Ginever RIBA | ARB (Architect) in 2010. They choose not to specialise in a particular sector. Instead, they enjoy working on all types of new-build or remodelling projects that are individual and interesting, including Listed or Heritage buildings.
Working for a mix of public and private clients, Plan A needed an insurance broker who was knowledgeable, proactive and able to respond quickly with advice suited to unforeseen situations. Projects sometimes face very different risk-profiles requiring variances in the structure of their insurance.
Paul told us, “I informally met Zahid at a number of local networking events. It was clear that he understood the industry well and that he and his team would provide a responsive and personal service. Face to face contact is important – we choose collaborators by a simple process: Know, Like, Trust.”
A recent building project was for a risk-averse private school. Most contractors may be asked to sign a Collateral Warranty to carry out the project brief for the stated sum of money; if anything goes wrong, liability is then more clearly defined. In this case, the Collateral Warranty was entirely bespoke with legal phrases that Paul and Jason were cautious about signing.
Custodian Insurance’s legal partners carefully checked the document, advising on which elements would create disproportionate risk and which could be accepted.
Our clear advice meant that Plan A could confidently highlight the risks to the school and negotiate from a position of understanding. Paul said, “The school accepted the situation and were reassured by the advice; we had protected our risk-exposure, retained our insurer’s confidence and the project was delivered successfully with no concerns.”
Plan A wanted to collaborate with another architect with strong healthcare experience, an area that Paul and Jason were keen to break into. “The other architect had the experience but no resources, whereas we had the resources but little experience,” Paul explained. To make this collaboration work, they set up a new company and identified that PI Insurance for this specialist work was the most complex and important element.
Custodian Insurance advised on a structured PI policy that would manage the risks of the health-care work separately from the rest of the company’s portfolio.
The prospective collaboration became a reality. Paul said, “Custodian’s exceptional advice helped us establish new business opportunities. Without a good insurance partner who understands the intimacies of your business, you could invest time and resources in going nowhere!”
Custodian Insurance is not just a premium, it’s a holistic service.Paul Ginever, Architect
Paul told us, “We hope to continue collaborating with Custodian Insurance for many years. Plan A has a responsibility to carefully manage the risks inherent in each design-project. When faced with a situation that we are unsure about, we rely on Custodian Insurance’s exceptional advice and support. The advice we receive from the team is prompt, clear and thorough, allowing us to retain our focus on the project rather than worrying.”