County Londonderry

County Londonderry is one of the six counties in the historical province of Ulster which make up Northern Ireland, a part of the United Kingdom. Northern Ireland is the pink-colored part of the map at left. This website also has pages for County Antrim and Belfast in Northern Ireland. 

Derry / Londonderry

The county town of Londonderry is called "Derry" by the Republicans (usually Catholic, those who favor consolidation of the six counties of Northern Ireland into the Republic of Ireland (Eire)), and Londonderry by the Unionists (usually Protestant, those who favor remaining part of the United Kingdom). Not to be political about it, I'll just call it Derry for short. 

Derry's City Walls still enclose the old town. I took a very interesting walking tour around the walls - it was only supposed to last an hour or so, but with only three of us plus the guide, we wound up taking more than two hours, with time in a coffee house afterward. 

The broad City Walls allowed room for artillery and the movement of troops along the top of the wall. 

St. Coulomb's Cathedral

Right : Interior of St. Coulomb's

Although the 1998 peace accords have made the sectarian violence mostly a thing of the past, some neighborhoods remain fiercely partisan. The "Free Derry" mural is one of many in the Catholic/Republican Bogside District.


In contrast, the Protestant/Unionist Fountain District sports red-white-and-blue curbstones and "No Surrender" slogans.

Downhill Desmesne


Downhill House was a mansion built in the 18th Century for Frederick Hervey, 4th Earl of Bristol and Bishop of Derry. He began work in 1768. 

The house grew to tremendous size, with all of the modern conveniences. It burned in 1851, was rebuilt in the 1870's, and lapsed into ruin after WWII. 

Mussenden Temple, on the cliff top near the House, was built in 1785 as a library and named in tribute to Hervey's cousin Frideswide Mussenden.  

Downhill Strand from the Mussenden Temple

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All pictures Copyright 2011 Mike Brown
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