About 'THE ORIGINALS' in risk control

The originals in risk control

British Engineering Services has come a long way in over 150 years when our ancestors took the first steps in engineering inspection. Since those early days, we have been through many transformations. We have changed our name, merged with other businesses and been incorporated into much larger organisations. Until recently, our business was part of RSA, one of the world's leading insurance groups and a FTSE 100 company. In 2015 we became established once more as an independent and privately owned company.

Today we employ highly trained and qualified Engineer Surveyors and Consultant Engineers. Our customers benefit from state-of-the-art technology and excellent online reporting systems that can deliver information quickly and efficiently. Our commitment to training the next generation of Engineer Surveyors and Consultant Engineers is setting the standard for others to follow. Each year we invest in our people, systems and infrastructure.

Some things, however, never change. Like our expertise, knowledge and reputation for looking after our customers. We are still protecting people and our customers’ businesses. That is why we are proud to be British Engineering Services and The Originals in risk control since 1859.

Please watch this short video to learn more about what we do for just some of our customers:

Executive Team

We employ some of the best people in the industry. Many of our managers have been involved in engineering inspection and certification for decades. It is this deep knowledge and understanding of our customers' requirements that has shaped our business and the industry at large.

Directors and Officers

Stewart Kay

Group Chief Executive Officer
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Richard Houghton

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Steve Dennison

Chief Financial Officer
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Hannah Mather

Group HR Director
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Dave Gill

Operations Director
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Jonathan Bradshaw

Chief Information Officer
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Sebastian Lomax

Managing Director - Testing & Consultancy
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Gareth Hilton

Chief Commercial Officer
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Paul Hirst

Managing Director - Inspection Services
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Andy Kinsey

Chief Risk Officer
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Our credentials

Our credentials are second to none. We were the first business to receive UKAS accreditation to ISO/IEC 17020 and a founding member of the Safety Assessment Federation (SAFed). No other inspection company is better qualified to deliver Engineering Testing, Inspection and Certification Services in the UK.

  • UKAS Accreditations (UKAS company reference No. 9230)
    • Type ‘A’ Inspection Body (ISO/IEC 17020:2012) for Pressure Equipment, Welding Procedures and Welder Approvals, Lifting Equipment, Local Exhaust Ventilation Equipment, Power Presses
    • Testing Laboratory (ISO/IEC 17025:2005) for Mechanical, Metallurgical and Non-Destructive testing of metals
    • Quality Management System Certification Body (ISO/IEC17021:2011) for audit and certification of quality management systems to ISO 9001

Note: For a full list of our UKAS Schedules of Accreditations please visit the UKAS website

  • Accredited by ASME as an Authorized Inspection Agency AIA-001 to cover Sections I, III Divisions 1 & 3, IV, VIII Divisions 1, 2, 3, X and XII of the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code
  • Appointed by the National Board as an Authorized Inspection Agency in accordance with the requirements of National Board publication NB-360 & NB-369
  • NICEIC Approved Contractor for Initial Verification and/or Periodic Inspection of Electrical Installation work
  • NICEIC Certification for Electrical Installation Work, including areas where potentially explosive atmospheres may be present
  • Appointed by the Department of Business Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) as a Notified Body under European Directive (Identification No. 0040) for The Pressure Equipment Directive 2014/68/EU, Simple Pressure Vessels Directive, the Lifts and Safety Components for Lifts Directive & the Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008
  • Designated as a Notified Body under the Construction Products Regulation (305/2011/EU-CPR)
  • Appointment by the Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA) to undertake the inspection of Tanks/Road & Rail Tankers as:
    • An Inspection Body for conformity assessment, initial inspection, periodic inspection, intermediate inspection and exceptional checks in accordance with the RID, ADR and IMDG Codes. Periodic examination, testing and certification in service of UK road tanks in accordance with the requirements of Part 3 of the Approved Derogations and transitional provisions
    • A Notified Body for conformity assessment, reassessment of conformity and periodic and intermediate inspection and exceptional checks of TPED tanks in accordance with CDG Regulations 16, 17, 18, 19, 21 & 22
  • Safe Contractor Certificate of Accreditation
  • Certificate of Accreditation for the Contractors Health and Safety Assessment Scheme (CHAS)
  • Inspection Body to the Malaysian Factories Machinery Regulations 1970
  • Inspecting Authority and Competent Authority under the Indian Boiler Regulations

British Engineering Services is a member of the following industry bodies:

  • The British Institute of Non-Destructive Testing (BINDT) Corporate Member
  • Founder Member of SAFed
  • Member - British Safety Council
  • Member of The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA)
  • Achilles - Certificate of Registration
  • Members of the Manchester Occupational Health & Safety Group

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Launch of the Great-Eastern 1858
Launch of the Great-Eastern 1858


National Vulcan was reformed as the Boiler Insurance & Steam Power Company Ltd.


National Vulcan was first formed under the title of the Steam Boiler Assurance Company. The Chief Engineer was Robert Bewick Longridge and our 1st Engineer Surveyor was William Monks who earned £120 per annum.


The Engine and Boiler Insurance Company Ltd. was registered on 12th November 1878. The founder, and chairman until 1913, was also Robert Bewick Longridge.


Company name is changed to The Engine, Boiler & Employer's Liability Insurance Company Ltd. A typical boiler premium at this time was £2 15s for £1,000 cover.

First X-ray 1895
First X-ray 1895


During 1895 the largest amount of deaths in any one year was recorded when 43 people die as the result of boiler explosions.


Reorganised as Vulcan Boiler and General Insurance Company. This year sees the company break the £100,000 income barrier.

Starter motor invented 1904
Starter motor invented 1904


Instigated by the Manchester Steam Users Association, The Factories and Workshops Act comes into force, which makes the inspection of boilers obligatory.


The company first uses the words 'British' and 'Electrical' in its name as they unite with the British Steam User's Insurance Company. Electricity had begun to be used for motive power and the company were keen to promote this commercially. Thus, The British Engine, Boiler & Electrical Insurance Company Ltd. came into existence.


The British Engine Boiler & Electrical Insurance Company Ltd. become part of the Royal Insurance Group who wanted to extend its operations into engineering.


Co-operation between those companies specialising in engineering insurance set up the Associated Offices Technical Committee.

Invention of the television 1925
Invention of the television 1925


British Engine Electrical Repair Company is formed. It becomes the biggest repair facility of its kind with 16 works throughout the UK.


For the first time, National Vulcan’s electrical premiums of £80,000 had moved ahead of Engine Insurance premiums of £78,000. Boiler premiums were still supreme with £140,000.


British Engine’s expansion sees offices and engineers in Spain, Australia, Holland, Germany, France, Belgium and Norway.


British Engine Boiler & Electrical Insurance Company absorb the Manchester Steam Users' Association.

The Spitfire is born 1936
The Spitfire is born 1936


The Quarries and Mines Regulations make the inspection of Electrical Installations compulsory.


The Factories Act defined the required examination periods for steam boilers, air receivers, gasholders, cranes, lifting apparatus and lifts.


On Christmas Eve, the National Vulcan Head Office at 67 King Street, Manchester suffers considerable damage due to German incendiary bombs. Branch offices at Swansea, Liverpool and Southampton are completely destroyed.


National Vulcan becomes the first inspection company to use an ultrasonic method of testing welds for cracks and flaws.

National Vulcan


After the war, British Engine re-established their European offices and expansion takes place in South Africa, India and Canada.


National Vulcan celebrate 100 years and is the oldest Engineering Insurance Company in the world. British Engine move their Head Office to Longridge House, Manchester which is then destroyed in a terrorist bombing in 1996.


British Engine becomes the first non-Japanese specialist engineering insurer, as part of the Royal Group, to become established in Japan.

Launch of the first Space Shuttle 1981
Launch of the first Space Shuttle 1981


British Engine Logo British Engine celebrates 100 years and changes its title to British Engine Insurance Ltd. At this time it is the largest Engineering Insurance Company in Europe. The company employ 400 Engineer Surveyors operating in the UK alone.

Launch of the Large Hadron Collider 2013
Launch of the Large Hadron Collider 2013


British Engine and National Vulcan merge to become Royal & SunAlliance Engineering, after the parent companies of Royal Insurance and Sun Alliance Insurance amalgamate.

Royal and Sonalliance


RSA Logo EI&C becomes part of Specialist Business within RSA UK with a strategy of profitable sustainable growth. Significant investment is made in the business.

British Engineering Services


British Engineering Services is formed to take over RSA's Engineering Inspection and Consultancy business. A new chapter begins under private ownership. Now completely independent, there is renewed commitment to investing in the future and delivering the highest level of engineering testing, inspection and consultancy services.

Underpinning the strength of the business is a unique heritage going back to 1859. The new brand reflects this. The familiar symbols used by our predecessors to denote strength, protection and success are refashioned for the 21st century to signify a forward looking business with a bright future.