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Lloyd's closes Sydney office to combat virus spread

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Lloyd’s has closed its Sydney office until further notice in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, with all staff now working from home.

“We have for some time been set up for remote working, and we have a fully tried-and-tested business continuity plan,” a note to key stakeholders says.

“All Lloyd’s staff remain accessible through the usual channels, being phone and email, with the only difference being that we are not physically located in 1 O’Connell Street.”

As reported last week, Lloyd’s has closed its London Underwriting Room in response to the crisis.

Lloyd’s General Representative in Australia Chris Mackinnon says the “momentous event” was marked by ringing the iconic Lutine Bell in the centre of the room once, denoting bad news. Two rings celebrates good news.

“We very much look forward to the day when we will be back together, ringing the bell twice to mark the re-opening of the room,” he said.

On a typical day about 5000 people go through the room, but this number fell to about 200 last week.