Posts Tagged ‘ Ulster Bank ’

Double Standards: The Tale Of Sean Dunne

DUNNE

Up until a few months back, the only business-trader this correspondent heard of negotiating deals while still bankrupt was Del ‘Boy’ Trotter; when he convinced Sid, the manager of the Nag’s Head, & Denzil, the owner of an artic-truck into a bulk-buying booze-run to Calais (while still insolvent due to bad investments in the Central American markets).

Your correspondent heard of another business-man recently negotiating a deal while still bankrupt, namely the property developer Sean Dunne; who helped convince the seller of 74 Grand Street, Soho, Manhattan to trade it for €3.6 million (while still insolvent due to bad investments in the Irish market).

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News In Brief-Rat Plane Crashes In Dublin As Sports Team Go Off The Ball

Rats Safe After Airport Crash

Rats Safe After Airport Crash

If News in Brief can’t be bothered this week can we blame it on tooth ache like Rory McIlroy? Only joking News in Brief is always on the ball. Unlike the Newstalk sports pundits behind the ’Off The Ball’ team, they’re definitely off: the ball, the side and the airwaves. The group’s departure comes after the lads were not allowed the option of moving from 7pm to 6pm for fears listeners would not be receptive and incurring the wrath of George Hook. Despite the possibility of a swift swop to RTE any transfer deals haven’t been signed as yet and it’s getting closer to extra time (very proud of all those sport references). It’s a shame they left this week, there was some kind of ball game on Tuesday wasn’t there? Continue reading

News in Brief – A Year in Brief

Olympic TorchHAPPY NEW YEAR! How’s the head? Mouth feel like it’s full of Jedwards hair? What better way to start the New Year than tired, fat and saturated in booze?

It hasn’t been a bad year. Actually . . . Well anyway to celebrate the dawn of the unlucky for some 2013 News in Brief has taken a look back at some of the best stories from 2012.

2012 saw the evolution of lives lived online and cemented the necessity that is the internet across every aspect of our lives. And its propensity for porn. Seeing the potential in owning online, Kevin O’Shea from Waterford in a “moment of madness” bought the domains; finegael.xxx, sinnfein.xxx and fiannafail.xxx for €300; the X-rated dot-com equivalent known for its use in porn site web addresses. On his purchases O’Shea said, ” I was laid up with a broken leg and I had a lot of time on my hands. It was kind of like that film Rear Window where the main character goes a bit mad.”

Last year Irish author Julian Gough, took umbrage with the organisers of the eponymous Wodehouse literary prize after discovering their winner was secured before the short list was drawn up. The well sought prize for the winner of the Wodehouse award? Well the top author has the honour of bestowing their name on a pig. Gough offended by the fix in the competition stole the prize pig from its home in Wales threatening to return the animal “sausage by sausage” until the competition was made fair. In a twist to the tale, and despite Gough’s criminal activity, 2012 saw the writer once again short listed for the award.

A former drug addict helped her husband in his attempt to rob a building society disguised as a wheelchair bound woman. While Denise Ward, 39 waited outside in a car, Thomas Clark dressed in a black wig, threatened a Permanent TSB branch manager with an axe. However Clark and his 21-year-old accomplice were chased from the building by the manager, shouting; “would you ever f*** off”.

In other banking news Ulster Bank lost the run of itself also losing its customers cash somewhere. Taxes, the payment and avoidance of also dominated the news this year. British comedian Jimmy Carr’s lack of tax lead to controversy on this side of the water as well. Whilst we know certain superstars of our own *cough-German submarine named band-cough* have made use of off-shore, legal, tax reduction measures it is unlikely they will face a barrage like Carr as the Irish economy relies in part on the income of the `legitimate tax avoidance measures` we offer global companies such as Facebook, Google and Apple . And at least Ulster Bank apologised. Chief Executive, Jim Brown turned down this year’s bonus after the unmitigated disaster that has been Ulster Bank’s computer problems. Thanks Jim.

Starbucks found themselves in trouble after they “erroneously posted” a tweet on their @StarbucksIE account saying; “Happy hour is on! Show us what makes you proud to be British for a chance to win. Don’t forget to tag #MyFrappuccino”. Irish followers didn’t take well to the mis-tweet with comedy writer Colm Tobin calling it, “the social media equivalent of Oliver Cromwell kicking Fungi in the nose” and another tweeter suggesting Starbucks re-name frappuccino’s, ‘Trappachino’s’ for the duration of the Euro 2012. Of which the less said the better.

On a similar theme we all watched Eurovision didn’t we? You either love it or threaten to `shed the blood` of `European scum`. Oh dear. For a show that often receives a Marmite reaction an Islamic extremist group went a bit further threatening to use knives and chemical weapons in a terror attack on the Eurovision hopefuls in May. Irish entry Jedward were unfazed, tweeting `Just so you know the Jedward Baby Day Care is closed and will not be changing any diapers so go baby wee wee at your own home`. Quite.

Ah Jedward, the stalwarts or News In Brief what else have they done this year? Well another one turned up, then another two (although made of wax), they ran a marathon with no training and supported Westlife in their farewell tour in Croke Park – never will we see four men, so stoically and so expertly stand up from stools.

It was Jedward who carried the Olympic flame as well, as it crossed Irish soil. With population figures taken into account Ireland came fourth in the Paralympics and earned a total of sixteen medals across London 2012. Not too shabby and a source of great pride to the whole country who welcomed our champions home with great ceremony and celebration. First stop The Late Late Show where the host managed to make a mockery of the whole thing and get Adam Nolan’s name wrong, repeatedly. He certainly wouldn’t want to meet the boxing champion in the ring after calling him Andy throughout the show causing Adam to take to Twitter to endorse the return of Pat Kenny. And the gold medal for prize prat goes to Ryan Tubridy.

What’s longer than an olympic swimming pool and less watery? Well, a lot of things really, but particularly the journey Olympic gymnast hopeful Kieran Behan had to take get to China. Mr Behan had been invited to take part in a prestigious gymnastic event but due to mistakes regarding his visa, was forced to re-board his eighteen hour flight from Heathrow to Beijing. Back in England it was only after discussion with the Chinese embassy that Mr Behan was once again onboard and bound for the Chinese capital. Gymnastics Ireland have taken full blame for the blunder which has cost Keiran five days of important training.Mr Behan, who has overcome sever disability and injury to get to his position in the gymnastic world was understandably frustrated, a member of his team commented, `It was the world’s biggest cock up.`

2012 saw cuts to public services including the Gardai. A victim of a burglary was forced to go and pick up Gardai after she was told there were no patrol cars for them to use. The woman, from Newtowncunningham in Co. Donegal initially reported the incident at her home, before being told she had the choice of waiting for the nearest patrol car, which was 9km away at the Carrigans station, or collecting the Gardai herself to investigate the incident.

And who could forget the councillor in Cork that wanted to introduce DNA testing to determine the doggy culprits leaving mess all over the city’s streets? He’s hoping we all have.

Ah 2012 what a year. What will 2013 bring? Hopefully more of the same. A Westlife reunion, the continuation of Jedward, more government groaning, banking balls ups and the general news fodder that makes this country so great and gives News in Brief something to write about every week. HAPPY NEW YEAR!

News in Brief-When The Council Gets Tough Boyzone Bertie Gets Going

Bertie Ahern (remember that man with all the money from last week) has been lobbying Dublin City Council for a posthumous statue of Stephen Gately to be erected following some words from the rest of Boyzone. Isn’t it a wonder.The Love me for a Reason singer died in 2009 whilst abroad with his partner. No matter what, Bertie and the boys may want however, the council’s policies set out procedures preventing a statue being placed until twenty years after the singer’s death. I love the way they love Steve, but when the council get’s tough Bertie gets going.
Bank of Ireland’s new post-graduate loan scheme comes attached with a higher rate of interest than loans being offered by Ulster Bank and Allied Irish but has still been “warmly welcomed” by Education Minister Ruairi Quinn. The new loan follows the withdrawal of maintenance grants for post-grad students. So now if you want to continue your education you will be required to pay only interest on the loan for the duration of their studies with capital repayments starting three months after completion of the course. You don’t need a PhD to realise post-grad study for some will now be out of the question.
If you didn’t get enough of American Michael Phelps, the world’s greatest swimmer in his trunks at the Olympics never fear. He could be swapping swimming for swinging (not like that) in a new movie version of Tarzan. The film is reputedly to be re-made by director, David Yates responsible for the last four Harry Potter films. The news brings a whole new meaning to ‘wet and wild’.
If the chances of winning the lotto are one in fourteen million imagine being the Donegal family that won twice in one day. This week two members of one family each bought a ticket with the same numbers at different shops both scooping part of the cool €250,000.
The Baltimore whale stuck in a west Cork harbour since Tuesday has breathed its last. The fin whale died after becoming stuck in the harbour and injuring itself as it anxiously thrashed. The giant mammal’s corpse which faces the same fate as similar creatures – that due to their size have had to be left to naturally decompose causing quite a stink – is now to be moved to Waterford. Seems a bit unfair, what did Waterford do?
In international news in Vatican City everyone is asking what the pope’s butler saw. Paolo Gabriele the pope’s personal butler is being charged with aggravated theft after reportedly taking and photocopying documents from the desk of Georg Gaenswein, the pope’s private secretary. Gabriele was one of the few with access to pope Benedict’s “private chambers” and at any time could be pardoned by his holiness. To err is human, to forgive – well actually for God’s ultimate representative on earth forgiveness is apparently unlikely and Gabriele is almost certain to face jail time.

News in Brief-Ulster Bank and Centra in Trouble As Burglary Victim Forced To Pick Gardai Up

A priceless piece of art in the National Gallery has been damaged in an isolated incident. The only work by Claude Monet owned by the National is now having repairs to a hole made in it by forty-seven year old Andrew Shannon from Dublin. Details are still unclear as to what was done to the painting or why but one thing is certain the work, ‘Argenteuil Basin with a Single Sail Boat’ won’t be worth much Monet anymore!

      Centra have had a slap of the wrist after including an alcohol offer on an advertisement for Child Allowance day reductions. The company was criticised for appearing to suggest forty bottles of Budweiser were the best thing to buy with your benefits as 1 in 11 children in Ireland live with a parent with an alcohol problem.
 
        Fianna Fail Senator Averil Power said, “Centra’s cynical promotion is insulting to parents who are struggling to pay for the basics and certainly won’t be spending their money on beer.” But the cake, ice-cream and biscuits also part of the advertisement are presumably the kind of necessities that are top of their lists? Specially as 1 in five Irish children are obese. Two for one on fags I say! Buy a gun, get one free! No?
 
Fancy some government debt? Try eBay. Minister for Finance Michael Noonan has done particularly well at auction selling off €500 million in short-term government debt. The bills sold, reach maturity in October, no interest is paid on them and the government must pay them in full when they reach maturity. Noonan called the sale a, “very important milestone on Ireland’s continuing path to recovery”. I just hope he understands it more than I do.
 
       A quick round of applause for Ulster Bank Chief Executive, Jim Brown who has said he will turn down this year’s bonus after the unmitigated disaster that has been Ulster Bank’s computer problems. Thanks Jim.
 
And while we’re at it one for An Post. They spectacularly spent €80,000 on eight Italian-made Cargo scooters for use on Dublin’s mail routes. They were painted, branded, tested and trialled and found to be useless. The scooters have now been sold to a businessman from Letterkenny who bought each bike at a reduced price of €1,500. I’m sure he thought it a redletter day.
 
       A victim of a burglary was forced to go and pick up Gardai after she was told there were no patrol cars for them to use. The woman, from Newtowncunningham in Co. Donegal initially reported the incident a her home, before being told she had the choice of waiting for the nearest patrol car, which was 9km away at the Carrigans station, or collecting the Gardai herself to investigate the incident.
 
Guards aren’t the only ones who have stopped cruising, after the announcement of a split between Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes (see what I did there?). Katie Holmes, most famous for playing Joey in Dawson’s Creek and Tom for being a seriously strange Scientologist, are now set to play their biggest roles yet in an acrimonious and media maintained divorce.
 
In other more interesting news; Pudsey, the pooch that won Britain’s Got Talent with his dancing owner Ashleigh, has signed a publishing contract worth £350,000. That’s right he can dance, he can write, but can he do his own stunts? ‘Pudsey: My Autobiography’ comes on the tail of Roy Keane’s dog Triggs also releasing a biography this year. Who will be next, Bo Obama? Tinkerbell Hilton? It’s a dog’s life.

News in Brief-United We Stand,Divided We Fall

This week we (well, not me) waved goodbye to Westlife. The fab four retired from the limelight with a farewell concert at Croke Park supported by our favourite twins who perhaps for one week should remain nameless. Never before have four men hopped off stools so diligently (and so many times), whilst the two blonde ones didn’t miss a background note and the brunettes sang someone else’s song.

As well as the eighty thousand fans that filled the stadium the concert was also broadcast across cinemas in Ireland and the UK which is presumably where old member, Brian McFatOne, sorry, McFadden, watched stoically, tears lining his cheeks. He taught them that stool move and not one of them said thank you . . .
It looks like detention for Shane Filan though who will continue to be managed by Louis Walsh as he launches his solo career as the ‘male Adele’ in a bid to reverse his bankruptcy.
 
Many Ulster Bank customers have faced their own financial difficulties over the last two weeks after a ‘technical fault’ at the bank left many payments unprocessed and some accounts empty. Today, Ulster Bank staff are still trying to clear the backlog of unprocessed transactions, now extending their prediction of resumed normal service to the beginning of next week. It’s a good job we’re used to not relying on our banks anymore otherwise this newest failure on their part may have come as a surprise.
 
Talking of Jimmy Carr’s unprocessed tax transactions – we were weren’t we? – the controversy has sparked debate on this side of the water as well. Whilst we know certain superstars of our own *cough-Bono-cough* have made use of off-shore, legal, tax reduction measures it is unlikely they will face a barrage like Carr as the Irish economy relies in part on the income of the `legitimate tax avoidance measures` we offer global companies such as Facebook, Google and Apple .
 
 . . So moving swiftly on.
 
Two newly weds in Cork had trouble with a gatecrasher at their wedding, at the Castlemartyr Resort where Bill Clinton also happened to be staying. Mr Howard, who is from Killavullen in north Cork and Ms Seamans, from Minneapolis in the US, where both more than happy to squeeze the former President into a wedding snap. Now that’s one for Facebook.
Another couple who may soon be updating their statuses are the Queen and Sinn Féin MLA Martin McGuinness who cemented their friendship this week with a lovely, long handshake.
 
There’s no love lost between the Queen and Martin McGuinness, his former affiliates blew up her cousin, she’s the Queen. That’s just how it is. Or was. But after Wednesday, when they met in matching colours and shook hands not once, but twice for the assembled press it seems Anglo-Irish relations may be on the up. Or not. McGuinness was quick to reassure, ‘I’m still a Republican.’ Maybe it’s still more ‘complicated’ than ‘in a relationship’.
 
 

News in Brief-Ireland’s Best Export Since Jedward Set For BGT Final

Laura Hughes, a single mother from Galway became an instant millionaire last weekend without even buying a lottery ticket. The unemployed thirty-two year old from Athenry was amazed to find eighteen million euro in her Ulster Bank account which had previously only housed a meagre thirty-five cent.

Sadly for Laura the added funds were an error then corrected by Ulster Bank, although not before Miss Hughes had time to test drive a new car she planned to buy with her new found wealth.
 
In other bank news National Irish Bank appears to have come through one of it’s most difficult periods with the help of Danish institution the Danske Bank Group, releasing figures showing an improvement in their operating profit by eleven million euro.
 
The group have championed their dedication to the Irish arm of their company with plans to reorganise and rebrand. Eivind Kolding, chairman of the Executive Board of Danske Bank has said; “We want to focus on our core business in Ireland,”.
 
How are they proving their commitment to the Emerald Isle? By renaming National Irish Bank, Danske Bank.
Not only are our banks being run from abroad but the face of politics is now being altered by a non-Irish man. Martin Critten, 54, from the North of England is to walk from Limerick to Dublin in an attempt to form a new political party.
Fed up with the states of the nation Martin Critten has launched his own website; http://www.sli-nios-fearr.com; explaining his manifesto and search for political partners to revive Ireland from it’s political pain.
‘We know Turkey’s don’t vote for Christmas’ Critten writes on his website, ‘we need to get people in Dail Eireann that are willing to make changes.’ An honourable aim, but Critten admits; ‘At the moment we’re totally visionless’. OK, Don’t start printing pamphlets yet. Critten hopes to reach Dublin by May 18th gathering a gang of supporters and interested members of the public along the way.
Is this a man we should get behind? Well you may end up behind him on the N7 as he walks his way across country.
 
More Garda stations are to shut nationwide in attempts to streamline the number of stations. It’s not clear when streamlining became management talk for means reducing but it can’t be coincidence that while the number of Garda stations decrease burglary rates are on the rise.
 
Dublin native Ryan O’Shaughnessy has made it through to the final of Britain’s Got Talent. The Fair City veteran puts Danny O’Dono-who? in the shade when it comes to love songs melting the hearts of millions with his song ‘No Name’.
Previously contracted to The Voice, Ryan decided to follow his song writing dream on BGT instead and now looks to become the biggest singing Irish export since Jedward. After initial contracting problems (once booted from the bottom two of Brian Kennedy’s group on The Voice) O’Shaughnessy was free to woo British audiences with his self-penned love songs and Irish charm.
 
Sadly for Ryan his lyrics failed to woo the girl for whom they were written, better luck with Her Majesty!
 
Another Irish Ryan is not proving as popular. Tubridy, 2FM’s  wannabe Terry Wogan stepped into his 9-11am weekday slot after the untimely death of Gerry Ryan two years ago.
 
The history graduate climbed his way to the top at RTE after starting his career as a runner securing some of the highest wages across the broadcaster.
 
Famous for crying housewives and Tubridy’s psuedo-confession box style Tubridy’s radio show on 2 made him the nation’s favourite young fogey. But with popularity comes the public penchant for putting people like Tubridy back in their place. The show has lost 90,000 listeners in the last two years with many switching over to Ray D’arcy on Today FM. The Late Late Show is also flailing, accused of weak interviews and a weaker guest line up. Coupled with a poor reception at BBC Radio 2 in London last summer and a twitter blackout (caused apparently by a lack of time but more easily blamed on the vitriol of viewers and listeners) it seems Tubridy’s time may be up.
 
There’s nothing cheesy when it comes to kids advertising – well there soon won’t be. It’s a well known fact that cleverly targeted advertising to kids through prime time TV slots can cause chaos in supermarkets and dictate the diets of families everywhere. But now in a push to reduce childhood obesity, advertising watchdogs are now putting their fun deriding foot down and taking away our cheese strings.