Seen or heard


Castlebeck, the care home group backed by JP McManus and John Magnier, has been put up for sale, the Sunday Independent reported yesterday.

Castlebeck, which employs 2,000 at 20 homes, featured last year in a BBC Panorama programme where staff were accused of abusing patients.

Lydian Capital Partners, the investment vehicle of McManus, Magnier and others, acquired the business for €316 million in 2006 but they have now appointed Grant Thornton to examine options for the business, including a sale or break-up, the paper reports.

Castlebeck has no connection with Barchester, another nursing home group with which McManus and Magnier are also involved.

Harvesting rights in State-owned forests could generate up to €680 million for the Government, the Sunday Times reported.

Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney is reported as saying the auction of 80-year harvesting rights in the forests, currently managed by Coillte, could yield between €370 million and €680 million as part of an asset sale programme.

He is expected to bring a proposal to sell the long-term harvesting rights on 850,000 acres to Government next month.

The chief executives of Ireland’s main lenders have been summoned to meet the economic management council ahead of publication of proposed personal insolvency legislation, according to the Sunday Times.

They will once again be reminded by the committee – including the Taoiseach, the Tánaiste, Minister for Finance Michael Noonan and Minister for Public Expenditure Brendan Howlin – of the need to fast-track forbearance measures and make them more widely available to homeowners unable to avail of the new regime unless they have exhausted restructuring options.