We've made it - Blog Awards Ireland 2016

I'm delighted to announce that Ireland Underground has made the long-list for the 2016 Littlewoods Ireland Blog Awards. It's an honour to be nominated and we truly hope that we make the shortlist.

It's been a busy year so far for us. We've profiled some amazing cars, met some fantastic people and most importantly, led the charge for a reduction in motor insurance premiums.

We've made both regional and national news, been a consistent feature in both the tabloids and broadsheets (a big thank you to Charlie Weston in the Irish Independent for their excellent coverage the last few months), we've been discussed on every radio show from Radio Kerry to Today FM and Radio 1.

Our fight to bring about cheaper insurance premiums goes on. We're still talking to politicians and journalists to make sure motorists in Ireland are not forgotten about.

we are delighted to receive this nomination in recognition of the tremendous work but in by all involved in our campaign. I think it's appropriate at this moment to thank all of our local reps who put a herculean amount of effort into aiding the cause. Also I must single out Amy NĂ­ Dheadaigh who was instrumental in getting us the press coverage that began the movement.

I hope that, when the public voting opens, you will be there to support us.

Thanks again for the support,


Sponsored by www.littlewoodsireland.ie

Mini Monster Series - Chris Gibson Toyota Yaris

Ladies and Gents, allow us to present the second entry into our Mini Monster Series.

Have a look at this stunning, show quality Yaris (never thought I'd say that!) from Chris Gibson.

Chris is studying mechanical engineering and renewable energy at Athlone IT, he bought his Yaris back in September 2014 and has made a fantastic job of it since. He's always resolved to modifying his first car, regardless of what it would have been. Chris really wanted to make his car his own, and I think he's been successful.

 This little monster has such a seamless look to it, you'd swear it was carved from one block of metal and dropped onto those stunning rims. He's fitted a full t-sport body kit, fully flushed bootlid and fitted a t-sport bonnet grill for good measure. He's also resprayed it in 8M4 Dark Metallic Blue. As well as those big jobs, he's added a few less noticeable touches such as the purple Lego dustcaps and team heko wind deflectors. All-in-all a beautiful job.

Under the hood the car is running on a 998cc, 4 cylinder, VVTI engine. Despite the relatively small engine, he still has to fork out around 1K for insurance this year. 

Does this really look like a car that needs that high of a premium? After the work put into it, I doubt very much Chris is going to be taking any risks that would damage his pride and joy.

The back end of this car is as sweet as you'll ever see on a Yaris. From the flush boot and 1.5 inch shotgun exhaust, to the gleaming paintwork and the slick spoiler, this car will turn heads from all angles. Chris has his Yaris lowered all round. Using TA Technix Coilovers, he's dropped 110mm up front and 115mm to the rear to give it a more sporty look and feel than a standard height Yaris.

"My favourite memory was going to JapFest 2015 as part of the Toc-Irl stand"

It should be no surprise that this car was a part of the 2015 JapFest show. This is certainly one of the most unique cars in Ireland and goes to show that you don't need a big car to be a showstopper.

The Next Step

First of all, I would like to say a massive thank you to those who made the effort to join us in Dublin yesterday.
The point of yesterdays demonstration was to bring the issue of soaring insurance premiums to light. Over the past number of weeks, we have been able to get the issue highlighted in every major news outlet in the country. Nearly every radio station in the country has discussed the issue, it has been debated on Vincent Browne, The last word with Matt Cooper and many others.

Yesterdays turnout was a massive disappointment of course, yet, with the small few numbers that did show, we still managed to get the issue on almost every news outlet in the country. Imagine what we could have done if everyone did come along.

It's very easy to rant on social media, to say what should be done and point fingers. It's easy to comment on news articles and assign blame. What is difficult is getting out and doing something about it. I made the error of presuming that all the anger and frustration being vented on social media would result in feet on the ground yesterday. I made the incorrect assumption that the motorists of Ireland were ready to stand up and fight for themselves rather than just talk about it on social media.

Perhaps we could have advertised the event better, but with no financial backing this is difficult. We had to rely entirely on social media and news publications. In the days and weeks running up to yesterdays event, we received countless messages of support. Many of these messages expressed delight that "finally someone is doing something". All of these messages, the Facebook posts, the website comments etc. led me to believe that we were onto something major. Judging by the reaction in the hours following yesterdays rally, we are onto something.
We are touching on a subject that is affecting thousands of people in Ireland. People are sick of having to pay out these premiums (even if they didn't show it yesterday). Perhaps traditional rallies and demonstrations are no longer the way to go. Perhaps there is another way to force the government into action.

Following yesterdays rally, we have received assurances from opposition TD's that they will not let the issue rest. They know, as do many Government TD's, that this is an issue of significant importance to Irish motorists. This is an issue that needs to be addressed decisively.

On a final note, to the many motorists who failed to attend yesterday despite saying they would. It is up to you as individuals to stand up for yourselves. You cannot rely on others to fix things for you. Yesterday, Ireland Underground showed up to fight for you, yet you did not give us the support we were relying on. Despite this, we will still continue to fight for you, because it's the right thing to do. If we have to drag you kicking and screaming with us, we will. We are going to keep fighting until we get a resolution. But if we can get your support, it will make the process a lot easier.