About Us

At Cura we specialise in finding protection insurance for people who are seen to be high risk, quirky or non-standard. We 'insure the uninsurable' and we fight for fairer terms and access to insurance for everybody.

Based in the seaside town of Filey, North Yorkshire the Special Risks Bureau provide an online insurance advisory service to people across the United Kingdom.

The Special Risks Bureau is a part of Cura Financial Services Limited, with a team of industry trained advisers dedicated to finding you the best insurance for your needs.

We specialise in:

  • Life Insurance
  • Critical Illness Cover
  • Income Protection
  • Accident, Sickness & Unemployment Insurance
  • Hazardous Occupations
  • Foreign Travel
  • Pre-existing Health Conditions
  • Hazardous Pastimes / Sports
Committed - Disability Confident

Our team have provided insurance advice since 2005 and have helped many individuals secure insurance policies who have previously been turned away by other brokers as 'uninsurable'. We pride ourselves on finding the right insurance products for our clients where others cannot.

We will place your application with the most appropriate insurance Provider for your needs, based upon our experience and industry knowledge, to get you the best terms and price for your policy. Our insurance advisers and administrative team remove the stress of your application process by handling as much of your application as you want us to, with regular telephone and email updates as often as you want them.

Meet the Team

Alan Knowles, Managing Director

“I am proud to be a part of Cura Financial Services, working alongside the insurance advisers who work tirelessly to source the best insurance policies for our clients.”

I originally joined financial services as a web programmer at the age of 21 but was quickly tempted by financial services and became a protection adviser. I now run Cura, a multi award-winning protection intermediary, specialising in hard-to-place protection cases, such as people with health conditions. I dislike excessive red tape and have a passion making the insurance industry more inclusive and accessible for everyone.

  • Qualifications: Bsc Hons Computer Programming. CII Financial Protection, Group Risk
  • Key Areas: Protection Insurance, Group Insurance, Cancer, Heart Conditions, Foreign Travel
  • Fun Fact: At college I was nearly 20 stone, had bright green hair (which I sometimes wore in big spikes), and wore a dog chain as a 'fashion' accessory.

Kathryn Knowles, Managing Director

“I am proud that we have built a company that insures the "uninsurable", just by taking the extra time and care with each client to understand their needs and show them that there is insurance out there for them, whatever the circumstance.”

After completing my PhD in Business Management I joined the insurance industry in 2010. A big part of my work involves producing educational videos and blogs for charities and the general public, to improve access to insurance. I have three boys and they definitely keep me on my toes! I love to dance and be outdoors playing in the mud with my kids.

  • Qualifications: PhD Business Management. CII Financial Protection, Group Risk, Customer Service in Insurance
  • Key Areas: Protection Insurance, Group Insurance, Mental Health, Content Marketing, Social Media, Training
  • Fun Fact: I may have a PhD, but push pull doors absolutely floor me, I always do the wrong way!
  • Links: More Info

James Barton, Head of Protection

  • Qualifications: CII Financial Protection
  • Key Areas: Offshore Workers, Group Protection
  • Fun Fact: You can't beat a good zombie show and if there's ever a zombie apocalypse, I'm your man.

Kellie, Administrative Manager

I have worked for Cura since 2010. I started within the Administrative team and after a while decided to further my career by becoming an Insurance Adviser. I am now the Administrative Manager and use my knowledge from working as an adviser, to make our administrative processes support advisers. I have two little girls and I love to share my passion for baking with them. I often bring in my sweet treats for the office and use them as guinea pigs for new recipes.

  • Qualifications: National Diploma in Uniformed Public Service Level 3. CII Financial Protection
  • Key Areas: Administration, Systems Management, Training, Trusts
  • Fun Fact: I am PADI qualified and have swum with sharks.
  • Links: Linkedin

Krystle, Insurance Adviser

I joined the team in October 2010 after a stint working for Saga. I was previously a trainee navigation officer in the merchant navy and have fond memories travelling the world in this role. I am a single mum and love spending time with my daughter. It is interesting trying to fit some sort of personal life around work and mummy duties!

  • Qualifications: CII Financial Protection
  • Key Areas: Armed Forces, Diabetes, HIV, Merchant Marine, Transgender, Women's Health
  • Fun Fact: I am seriously tall and have to buy all my trousers online.
  • Links: Linkedin

Victoria, Executive Assistant

I am the Executive Assistant for Alan and Kathryn, I have been with Cura since early 2017. I help them to coordinate their busy schedules inside of Cura and across the insurance industry, and ensure that their clients get an expert service. I hold the fort when they are away from the office as well as holding duets with Evie, much to our colleague's delight!

  • Qualifications: Studying for a degree in business management
  • Key Areas: Administration
  • Fun Fact: I can knit the most amazing blankets.

Mark, Insurance Adviser

I have worked in the financial services industry for over 14 years and joined the team in 2011. Having previously worked at Yorkshire Bank, I came to Cura to further my ability to secure people's future financial security. I advise in protection and general insurance and have a keen interest in the benefit of income protection. Outside of work I enjoy playing tennis and hockey.

Evie, Executive Assistant

I have been lucky enough to work at Cura since 2016. I initially started as an apprentice and spent a couple of years building my knowledge of what our clients need, so that I can support them as best as possible. I am now the Executive Assistant to the Head of Protection. I really enjoy my role as none of our clients are ever the same. Outside of work I enjoy horse riding, spending time with my family and a having good night out! I am rather partial to hosting sing-offs with Victoria in the office.

  • Qualifications: Level 3 Diploma in Business Administration
  • Key Areas: Administration
  • Fun Fact: I am the songbird of my generation.
  • Links: Linkedin

Nick, Insurance Adviser

I've been with Cura since 2016 and I thoroughly enjoy working here. My background is in Sport & Health Sciences, so the transition to the protection industry has been a real eye-opener for me; challenging but also very rewarding. When I'm away from the office, I enjoy catching up with my friends and family, and football is my passion!

Suzanne, Compliance Officer

My main role in Cura is compliance monitoring, alongside my training in HR, to support the whole team. I have worked here since November 2016, and have enjoyed the ability to put my HR knowledge into practice, as well as developing my skills in compliance. I work here part-time and I also teach English as a second language; languages are a love of mine. Outside of work, I love spending time with my family, and trying to watch my favourite Netflix series', although it's difficult to do with two young kids at my feet!

  • Qualifications: BA (Hons) German Studies, MA (CIPD) Personnel and Employee Development
  • Key Areas: Compliance, Human Resources, Management Reporting, Outreach Activities, Training
  • Fun Fact: I once went for an interview for a HR position, that took place in a bedroom!!
  • Links: Linkedin

Emma, Trainee Insurance Adviser

I have recently joined Cura as a Trainee Insurance Adviser, I have over 23 years experience working in General Insurance and the Financial services industry and I am Cert CII qualified. In my spare time I like to read and I enjoy long strolls along the beach with the dog.

  • Qualifications: CII Financial Services Regulation and Ethics, Financial Protection
  • Key Areas: Insurance
  • Fun Fact: I learned to say the alphabet backwards before forwards.

Rheanna, Finance Executive

I have been with Cura since October 2018. In my role I handle company finances and liaise with insurers to monitor policy payments. I also deal with all areas of administration, speaking with clients, insurers and medical professionals. Outside of work I enjoy going to the gym (yes one of those people that actually enjoy going to the gym) going on long walks with my dog (more of a work out than going to the gym when you have a cheeky Jack Russell that doesn't like doing as he is told) I also like socialising with friends whether that be a night in with a takeaway or a few beverages out.

  • Key Areas: Administration, Finance
  • Fun Fact: I have 16 tattoos, and counting!
  • Links: Linkedin

Sarah, Sales Support

I have been with Cura since June 2015 and I've recently returned from maternity leave after having my first daughter. I'm now undertaking a new exciting role of extending our current client portfolio which focuses on keeping in touch with our existing clients. Outside of work I enjoy planning events, anything from attending track days with my husband, family BBQ's to sunning it up in Tenerife.

  • Qualifications: BA (Hons) Tourism Management
  • Key Areas: Administration
  • Fun Fact: I can touch my nose with my tongue.

Vanessa, Administrator

With a strong background in customer services, from a Barista to an English Heritage tour guide, I'm excited to build a career toward insurance advising with Cura. I joined the team in March 2019 as an Administrator, and will begin my Advisor training soon. I currently work as a Sales Support Administrator, helping the advisers to arrange the vital cover that our clients need.

Outside of the work I enjoy reading (specifically crime thrillers, both fiction and non-fiction), photography and writing.

  • Qualifications: BA (Hons) Tourism & Business
  • Key Areas: Administration
  • Fun Fact: I sell my photography and thoughts online, and can make a crackin' flat white.
  • Links: Linkedin

Lindsay, Marketing Executive

I joined Cura as Marketing Executive in July 2019. I bring over 10 years of Design & Marketing experience to the team. I co-ordinate and design marketing material, as well as getting everyone involved in various charity events throughout the year! Which is lot's of fun!

I enjoy keeping fit & active, Zumba and running. Going for walks with my husband and 2 kids in the beautiful North Yorkshire surroundings. I do love a good charity shop or car boot find!

  • Qualifications: BA (Hons) Visual Communication, Edinburgh College of Art
  • Key Areas: Design, Copywriting, Marketing, Branding & Identity
  • Fun Fact: I play the flute & saxophone in an Army Reserve band.
  • Links: Linkedin

Our Awards

We are proud to continually be recognised by our peers for the hard work and dedication of our team. First and foremost we always put out clients interests first and this is reflected in the awards below.

W Cover Women in Protection Awards - Female Adviser of the year highly commended 2019 W Cover Women in Protection Awards - Female Diversity Champion of the year winner 2019 Cover excellence awards Best Overall Intermdiary winner 2019 Cover excellence awards Customer Service winner 2019 Cover excellence awards Protection Intermediary of the Year winner 2010 ILP Protection adviser of the year 2019 WIIA Finalist 2019 MMA Highly Commended 2019 FRWRA Winner 2019 AIG Life Winner 2019 MMA Best protection adviser Winner 2019 PA Women in Financial Advice Awards Winner 2019 CMA Awards Finalist 2019 PA Women in Financial Advice Awards Finalist 2019 Protection review shortlist 2019 Diversity awards 2019 - Small to medium business of the year Cover excellence awards winner 2018 Cover excellence awards highly commended 2018 PA Women in Financial Advice Awards Winner 2018 PA Women in Financial Advice Awards highly commended 2018 health insurance awards best protection shortlist 2018 MoneyFacts Awards protection advisor 2018 Financial Reporter Women's Recognition Awards Finalist 2018 MMA Best protection adviser Winner 2018 MoneyFacts Finalist Awards 2018 MMA Best protection adviser finalist 2018 Protection review shortlist 2018 Cover excellence awards highly commended 2017 Cover excellence awards winner 2017 Unbiased Protection Commended 2017 MMA Best protection adviser winner 2017 Protection review shortlist 2017 Cover excellence awards highly commended 2016 Cover excellence awards winner 2016 Health insurance awards shortlist 2016 MMA Best protection adviser finalist 2016 PTFS Financial excellence finalist 2016 PTFS Financial excellence finalist 2015 MMA small adviser finalist 2015 PTFS Best protection firm 2013 PTFS best member firm 2013

Cura Moves Home

You can read more about our move here.

Corporate Social Responsibility

Our team view the Company's corporate social responsibility as a pivotal aspect of our operations and strive to improve our environmental, economic and social impacts wherever possible. It is our company policy to never cold call an individual and we always approach our clients in a respectful manner, appropriate to their personal needs.

Please visit our How We Give Back page to see how we support our local community and other causes that are close to our hearts.

Protection Distributors Group (PDG)

Cura are proud to be active members of Protection Distributors Group (PDG).