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Dermot O'Donoghue reads in Sweny's pharmacy in Dublin, made famous by James Joyce's 'Ulysses'. A reading of his short story 'The Dead' was held in Dublin today. Julien Behal/PA Wire
The Daily Fix

The Daily Fix: Friday

In tonight’s fix: Some parents to lose child benefit; continued rows over pensions debacle; Ray Grehan bankrupt – in England – and all the other bits you may have missed.

EVERY EVENING, brings you a roundup of the day’s main news – plus any bits and pieces you may have missed…

  • Opposition parties have called on the government to explain the circumstances under which 115,000 pensioners were told they may have to pay a higher tax bill. The Revenue has said it would not rule out back tax on some pensioners with large unpaid arrears. A special helpline will operate tomorrow to answer queries from pensioners who may be affected.
  • Over 5,600 parents have had their child benefits suspended after failing to respond to government checks on their details and entitlements. 63,000 parents had been asked to vouch that they still lived in Ireland and satisfied the conditions for receiving the benefit.
  • Developer Ray Grehan – who owes NAMA over €300 million – has been ruled bankrupt at a court in London. The proceedings may make it difficult for NAMA to pursue its claim for the cash.
  • President Higgins has announced his seven nominees to the Council of State – comprising largely of civil rights activists and academics.
  • Britain’s ministry of health says there is no reason to recommend the routine removal of PIP breast implants, which have been found to have a high chance of rupturing. The Czech Republic has recommended that all such implants be removed.
  • Cleaners in Castlebar hospital are to serve notice of industrial action in the coming days, in response to a HSE decision to outsource the work of support staff who are retiring in the next two months.
  • 33 leading members of the Irish language community have urged the government to rethink their plans to merge the office of the Coimisinéir Teanga with that of the Ombudsman.

Storm damage: a van is recovered from the side of the A1 near North Yorkshire, after gale force winds caused disruption through Wednesday night and Thursday morning. (Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire)

  • Hungary has inched a step closer to needing an international bailout, after being downgraded by the ratings agency Fitch. Hungary is now at junk status, after applying to the EU and IMF for financing. Hungary’s not in the euro.
  • A state agency has played down reports of how expensive it might be to replace lead piping in advance of an EU deadline in 2013 – saying the amount of piping that needs replacing is 5,500 metres, not kilometres as had been previously reported.
  • “Can I have a P, please, Bob?” The legendary host of the famed ITV quiz show Blockbusters, Bob Holness, has died aged 83.. Holness was also an accomplished actor and had played James Bond in radio productions that preceded the movies.
  • Iran is reportedly preparing to launch its own ‘national intranet’, which will eventually totally replace the internet in that country.
  • Yes, Eamon Dunphy is in an advert for McDonalds – and yes, it is a bit creepy.
  • The world’s youngest app developer (he’s 13, and from Cork) has released a follow-up to his chart-topping debut. Harry Moran’s PizzaBot Season(ing)s is a follow-up to PizzaBot, which was the top paid-for app on the iTunes chart last year.
  • Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, and you, and you, and you, and you, and you…
  • It’s Friday, and around here we enjoy our Fridays. Here’s our fluffy Friday gallery – this week, red pandas.
  • Former Australian prime minister Bob Hawke hasn’t been in power for 20 years – but he still knows how to make his people smile. Here is an 82-year-old former politician downing a pint in one go.
  • Other people who are happier now than before are the locals of Effin, Co Limerick. The parishioners there have won a battle to have Facebook recognise their home parish as a ‘hometown’. Effin marvellous.
  • This gif should not be as entertaining as it is.
  • Alan Rickman has taken over a building! And there’s only one person we can call… it’s John-Liam-Michael-Collins-Neeson-McClane!

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