Collage of photos from across derry

Plantation

a photo of Plantation

What became the City of Derry was part of the relatively new County Donegal up until 1610. In that year, the west bank of the future city was transferred by the English Crown to The Honourable The Irish Society and was combined with County Coleraine, part of County Antrim and a large portion of County Tyrone to form County Londonderry. Planters organised by London livery companies through The Honourable The Irish Society arrived in the 17th century as part of the Plantation of Ulster, and rebuilt the town with high walls to defend it from Irish insurgents who opposed the plantation. The aim was to settle Ulster with a population supportive of the Crown. It was then renamed "Londonderry".

This city was the first planned city in Ireland: it was begun in 1613, with the walls being completed in 1619, at a cost of £10,757. The central diamond within a walled city with four gates was thought to be a good design for defence. The grid pattern chosen was subsequently much copied in the colonies of British North America. The charter initially defined the city as extending three Irish miles (about 6.1 km) from the centre.

The modern city preserves the 17th century layout of four main streets radiating from a central Diamond to four gateways – Bishop's Gate, Ferryquay Gate, Shipquay Gate and Butcher's Gate. The city's oldest surviving building was also constructed at this time: the 1633 Plantation Gothic cathedral of St Columb. In the porch of the cathedral is a stone that records completion with the inscription:

"If stones could speake, then London's prayse should sound, Who built this church and cittie from the grounde"

St Columb's Cathedral
a small photo ofSt Columb's Cathedral
St Columb’s Cathedral is the first post Reformation Cathedral in the UK, it was built in 1633 by William Parratt for The Honourable The Irish Society, the current tower and main building are still that of the original. It was named after St Columba, a Christian monk that established a settlement in Derry during the 6th century.