is the second-largest city in Northern Ireland and the fourth-largest city on the island of Ireland. The name Derry is an anglicisation of the Irish name Daire orDoire meaning "oak grove". In 1613, the city was granted a Royal Charter by King James I and the "London" prefix was added, changing the name of the city to Londonderry. While the city is more usually known as Derry, Londonderry is also commonly used and remains the legal name..Derry is close to the border with County Donegal, with which it has had a close link for many centuries. The person traditionally seen as the 'founder' of the original Derry is Saint Colmcille, a holy man from Tír Chonaill, the old name for almost all of modern County Donegal (of which the west bank of the Foyle was a part before c. 1600)..In 2013, Derry became the inaugural UK City of Culture, having been awarded the title in July 2010..
|Derry / Londonderry|
|Scots: Derrie / Lunnonderrie|
|Irish: Doire / Doire Cholmcille|
From top, left to right: Austins Department Store, Derry's Walls, Free Derry Corner, Peace Bridge across the River Foyle, a view of Derry at night, Diamond War Memorial, 'Hands Across the Divide' sculpture.
Derry is the only remaining completely intact walled city in Ireland and one of the finest examples of a walled city in Europe. The walls constitute the largest monument in State care in Northern Ireland and, as the last walled city to be built in Europe, stands as the most complete and spectacular.
The Walls were built during the period 1613–1619 by The Honourable The Irish Society as defences for early 17th century settlers from England and Scotland. The Walls, which are approximately 1 mile (1.6 km) in circumference and which vary in height and width between 3.7 and 10.7 metres (12 and 35 feet), are completely intact and form a walkway around the inner city. They provide a unique promenade to view the layout of the original town which still preserves its Renaissance style street plan. The four original gates to the Walled City are Bishop's Gate, Ferryquay Gate, Butcher Gate and Shipquay Gate. Three further gates were added later, Magazine Gate, Castle Gate and New Gate, making seven gates in total. Historic buildings within the walls include the 1633 Gothic cathedral of St Columb, the Apprentice Boys Memorial Hall and the courthouse.
It is one of the few cities in Europe that never saw its fortifications breached, withstanding several sieges including one in 1689 which lasted 105 days, hence the city's nickname, The Maiden City.
Derry is renowned for its architecture. This can be primarily ascribed to the formal planning of the historic walled city of Derry at the core of the modern city. This is centred on the Diamond with a collection of late Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian buildings maintaining the gridlines of the main thoroughfares (Shipquay Street, Ferryquay Street, Butcher Street and Bishop Street) to the City Gates. Saint Columb's Cathedral does not follow the grid pattern reinforcing its civic status. This Church of Ireland Cathedral was the first post-Reformation Cathedral built for an Anglican church. The construction of the Roman Catholic St Eugene's Cathedral in the Bogside in the 19th-century was another major architectural addition to the city. The more recent infill buildings within the walls are of varying quality and in many cases these were low quality hurriedly constructed replacements for 1970s bomb damaged buildings. The Townscape Heritage Initiative has funded restoration works to key listed buildings and other older structures.
In recent years the city and surrounding countryside have become well known for their artistic legacy, producing Nobel Prize-winning poet Seamus Heaney, poet Seamus Deane, playwright Brian Friel, writer and music critic Nik Cohn, artist Willie Doherty, socio-political commentator and activist Eamonn McCann and bands such as The Undertones. The large political gable-wall murals of Bogside Artists, Free Derry Corner, the Foyle Film Festival, the Derry Walls, St Eugene's and St Columb's Cathedrals and the annual Halloween street carnival are popular tourist attractions. In 2010, Derry was named the UK's tenth 'most musical' city by PRS for Music.
In May 2013 a perpetual Peace Flame Monument was unveiled by Martin Luther King III and Presbyterian minister Rev. David Latimer. The flame was lit by children from both traditions in the city and is one of only 15 such flames across the world.
Derry is home to the Magee Campus of the University of Ulster, formerly Magee College. However, Lockwood's 1960s decision to locate Northern Ireland's second university in Coleraine rather than Derry helped contribute to the formation of the civil rights movement that ultimately led to The Troubles. Derry was the town more closely associated with higher learning, with Magee College already more than a century old by that time. In the mid-1980s a half-hearted attempt was made at rectifying this mistake by forming Magee College as a campus of the University of Ulster but this has failed to stifle calls for the establishment of an independent University in Derry that can grow to it full potential. The campus has never thrived and currently only has 3,500 students out of a total University of Ulster student population of 27,000. Ironically, although Coleraine is blamed by many in the city for 'stealing the University', it has only 5,000 students, the remaining 19,000 being based in Belfast.
The North West Regional College is also based in the city. In recent years it has grown to almost 30,000 students.. One of the two oldest secondary schools in Northern Ireland is located in Derry, Foyle and Londonderry College. It was founded in 1616 by the merchant taylors and remains a popular choice. Other secondary schools include St Columb's College, Oakgrove Integrated College, St Cecilias College, St. Mary's College, St Josephs Boys School, Lisneal College, Thornhill College, Lumen Christi College and St. Brigid's College. There are also numerous primary schools.
SOURCE : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Derry