The Museum of Free Derry


Don’t be misled by the mural to the right of the entrance of the museum which clearly relates to the Palestinian struggle. While the people of the Bogside and most particularly civil rights activists have associated themselves with left wing, socialist struggles across the world including those in Palestine and Cuba (see picture below – noting that the Lynch relates to Che’s Irish ancestry) this museum is very focused, and bluntly so, on the history of Bogside and its immediate neighbouring areas in the second half of the 20th century with a particular focus on civil rights era of the 1960s and the Free Derry/early Troubles era of the 1970s. Continue reading “The Museum of Free Derry”

Bloody Sunday Memorial


On what quickly became known as Bloody Sunday ( 30 January 1972) – no doubt echoing Dublin’s Bloody Sunday of November 1920, 13 protesters at a civil rights march were shot dead by troops from the British Army’s Parachute Regiment (1 Para). On 16 June 1972 a further protester died from wounds sustained on Bloody Sunday. This memorial on Rossville Street in the Bogside, where the deaths occurred, is to the 14 dead. Continue reading “Bloody Sunday Memorial”

Raytheon and Derry


Affixed to the City Walls in Guildhall Square, I came across the plaques in the attached photograph.

The circular plaque, clearly associated with the centre one, brings together two symbols of Derry – the famous 17th century City Walls which are among the best preserved and most complete city walls in Europe and the oak leaf, a much older symbol of Derry, recalling the oak grove that was here when the city was first established and indeed the origin of half the official name of the city. Continue reading “Raytheon and Derry”

Walker Memorial Courtyard


I was very much of two minds as to whether or not to do a review of this courtyard which forms part of the Apprentice Boys Memorial Hall. My picture above will suggest why a review is perhaps unwarranted. Not only has the Good Reverend George Walker disappeared from his plinth on the City Walls but he also seems to have disappeared from the Walker Memorial Courtyard! Let me explain. Continue reading “Walker Memorial Courtyard”

The Apprentice Boys – Memorial Hall and Museum


In Northern Ireland there currently exist three Protestant Orders having their roots in the Glorious Revolution of 1688-1690 when the Protestant King William III defeated the deposed Catholic James II and secured his and the Protestant ascendancy to the British Throne. While things moved on in Britain, Irish Protestants immediately started celebrating this victory and have been celebrating it ever since. Continue reading “The Apprentice Boys – Memorial Hall and Museum”

First Derry Presbyterian Church


Presbyterians have resided in the City since around 1642 having arrived during the Plantation of Ulster which began in the early 1600s. By the time of the Siege of Derry there was a significant number of Presbyterians in the city but still they didn’t have a place of worship within the City Walls. During the Siege, like many others in the region, the Presbyterians had moved in behind the city walls either to assist in the defence of the City or to seek safety from Jacobite forces. Within the Walls they worshipped in St Columb’s Cathedral and at some time they actually had St Augustine’s Church“on loan”. Continue reading “First Derry Presbyterian Church”