The legends of the Northlands abound with tales of blokes known by a combination of the name Eric (sometimes Erik) and some evocative epithet. Who could forget, for instance, Erik the Red, slayer of Eyiolf the Foul and first European to reach America? Or Eric Bloodaxe, terror of the Baltic shores and acclaimed author of Debrett’s Guide to Etiquette and Modern Manners? Or, indeed, former Stiff Records stalwart and less obviously funny contemporary of Jilted John, Reckless Eric? You had forgotten him? He’s still touring, you know…

Anyway, even if you had forgotten the whole lot of them, not to worry, here’s an even more memorable Eric: Unrated Eric the unloved insurer of Iceland. Nobody has a good word to say about poor Unrated Eric right now. First Icelandic regulator Fjármálaeftirlitið stripped poor Eric of his rating, then rival insurers gathered round like a snarling pack of ankle-snapping wolves, next thing you knew: all and sundry were queuing up to berate Unrated Eric.

A barage of bad publicity across the UK’s mainstream media followed the shocking revelation in the Sunday papers that lady Roslyn Earle had been forced to flee her five-bedroom Wiltshire home with only two cats and a suitcase after flood waters warped her solid oak flooring and tide-marked her precious antiques – only for her to discover that centuries-old posh person’s insurance provider Country Gentlemen’s Association (known simply as Counts to its exclusive clientele) had secretly placed her insurance with Icelandic Eric, who was rumoured to have denied the claim.

A lone voice in defence of unrated Eric came from Bureau Insurance Services managing director Jordan. Eric has “no problem” Jordan claimed, insisting that just because Eric is unrated doesn’t mean he won’t be paying claims, if he sees fit. Jordan even suggested that Eric had slipped Roslyn an interim, so the whole thing could be just a storm in a tea chest, which kinda makes you wonder why we bothered telling you about it in the first place!



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