Category Archives: British Location

Weekly City Spotlight: Lisburn

Lisburn is a city in Northern Ireland, situated on the River Lagan, southwest of the capital Belfast. Forming a section of the Belfast metropolitan area, Lisburn has a population close to 72,000, making it the third largest city in Northern Ireland.

Set in the beautiful Lagan Valley the area covers 174 square miles of contrasting scenery from the gentle drumlins of the open countryside to its many picturesque towns and villages. The City centre still retains many architectural buildings and streets dating from the 18th century but it is also a lively bustling modern city.

Lisburn was previously a borough and was granted city status in 2002 as part of Queen Elizabeth II’s Golden Jubilee celebrations.

Historic Lisburn

In the 1620s, Lisburn’s streets were pretty much the same as they are set out today, including Bow Street, Market Square, Castle Street and Bridge Street. In 1628, Sir Edward Conway acquired a charter from King Charles I, which granted the town to hold a weekly market. To this day, the market is still held every Tuesday in the city. The Manor House was ruined in the l fire of 1707 and was sadly never rebuilt (Lisburn’s Latin motto, Ex igne resurgam, refers to this event).

Lisburn was significant in regards to Ireland’s linen industry, which began in 1698 by Louis Crommelin and various other people. Many people consider the city the birthplace of Ireland’s linen industry, and an exhibition detailing it all can be found in the Irish Linen Centre, located in the old Market House in Market Square.

Social Media

Additional information on Lisburn can be found on the Visit Lisburn website and Visit Lisburn Facebook page.

Famous Faces

Sir Richard Wallace created baronet in 1871 and was Member of Parliament for Lisburn from 1873 to 1885.

William David Trimble, Baron Trimble, is a politician who was the first First Minister of Northern Ireland from 1998 to 2002, and the Leader of the Ulster Unionist Party from 1995 to 2005.

Sights

Hillsborough Fort

Set in Hillsborough Forest and built on the site of the old Magennes stronghold, the Fort was built in 1630 by Peter Hill and completed around 1650 by Colonel Arthur Hill. The structure was constituted as a Royal Fort by Charles II.

Irish Linen Centre and Lisburn Museum

This award winning museum is located in Lisburn’s oldest building; the 17th Century Market House, which can be found in the city centre. It brings to life the history of the Irish Linen Industry and its importance to Lisburn. Visitors can see the heritage of craft skills in the daily demonstrations of hand-spinning and handloom-weaving and admire the treasured collection of damask linen and costumes.

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Weekly City Spotlight: Swansea/Abertawe

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Swansea, officially known as the City and County of Swansea, is a city and county on the south coast of Wales. The city has a population of over 239,000 making it the second largest city in Wales after the capital, Cardiff. Swansea is in fact the twenty-sixth largest city in the United Kingdom and is situated next to the historic county boundaries of Glamorgan on the beautiful south west Wales coast.

During its industrial heyday, Swansea was a key centre of the copper industry, often being associated with the nickname ‘Copperopolis’ in the 19th century.

When visiting Swansea, be sure to bring a raincoat with you as the Met Office rank it as the wettest city in Britain. But don’t let that steer you away from one of the UK’s most picturesque cities, because during midsummer, Swansea’s temperatures can soar into the high twenties Celsius.

Historic Swansea

Swansea was once called Sweins ey, which means Swein’s island. The island stood in the mouth of the River Tawe. Who Swein was is not known for sure but he may have been a Norseman who built a fort on the island about 1000 AD and used it as a base for raiding the Welsh coast.
The town of Swansea was founded in the early 12th century when the Normans conquered the area. The Norman lord built a wooden castle on the site of Worcester Place. A town soon grew up by the castle. The garrison of Swansea castle provided a market for the people of the town and all their goods. Many of the townspeople were English immigrants. Around 1158, Swansea was given a charter and King John gave Swansea another charter in 1215.

Social Media

Additional information on Newry can be found on the City and County of Swansea website and Swansea Council Twitter.

Representation in the media

Swansea has been used as a location for films such as Only Two Can Play, Submarine and Twin Town, the TV series Mine All Mine and in episodes of Doctor Who.

Swansea was the first city in Wales to feature in its own version of the board game Monopoly. The Swansea edition of Monopoly features 33 local landmarks and has been produced in both English and Welsh.

Famous Faces

Catherine Zeta-Jones CBE, actress

Bonnie Tyler, singer

Chris Coleman, former footballer and current Welsh National team manager

Rob Brydon MBE, comedian, actor and presenter

Sights

Maritime Quarter

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WWII bombing flattened much of central Swansea, which was rebuilt as a rather soulless retail development in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s. What little remains of Georgian and Victorian Swansea stretches from Wind St and York St to Somerset Pl and Cambrian Way in the Maritime Quarter; this is the most attractive part of the city centre.

The Mumbles

The Mumbles have been Swansea’s seaside retreat since 1807, when the Oystermouth Railway was opened. Built for transporting coal, the horse-drawn carriages were soon converted for paying customers, and the Mumbles train became the first passenger railway service in the world. Newly fashionable in recent years, with top-notch restaurants competing for trade along the promenade, the Mumbles got a huge boost to its reputation when its most famous daughter, Hollywood actress Catherine Zeta-Jones, built a £2 million luxury mansion at Limeslade, on the south side of the peninsula.

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Weekly City Spotlight: Aberdeen

Aberdeen

Aberdeen’s Stunning Coastline

Set on the River Dee and Don, the city of Aberdeen is situated in the North East of Scotland.  Aberdeen offers spectacular coastal scenery and is home to an abundance of castles, golf courses, parklands and striking granite architecture, proving a great choice for a city break with this cosmopolitan centre appealing to all.

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Weekly City Spotlight: York

York

Aerial View of York

The city of York is simply stunning and provides a wealth of attractions to those opting for a city break within this historic and picturesque location.  Situated in the North East of England, the walled city is home to countless architectural and historic delights from the imposing York Minster to the charming cobbled streets of The Shambles with shops, museums, parklands and the riverbank welcoming millions of visitors each year.

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Weekly City Spotlight: Worcester

Worcester

Skyline View of Picturesque Worcester

The picturesque city of Worcester is set in the West Midlands of England on the River Severn, within close proximity of both the Malvern Hills and the Cotswolds.  The history of this charming city can be explored on foot with a chance to learn more about its rich heritage including the Cathedral and the location of the final battle of the Civil War.  The city is also the home of Lea & Perrins and its’ world renowned Worcestershire Sauce.

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Weekly City Spotlight: Wolverhampton

Wolverhampton

Wightwick Manor

The city of Wolverhampton is located in the West Midlands and is home to a number of attractions including the beautiful Wightwick Manor and Gardens and the stunning West Park.  With an exciting array of sporting venues including the Wolverhampton Racecourse and Molineux Stadium the home ground of Wolverhampton Wonderers F.C., there is plenty to choose from for those on a city break to the historic city.
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Weekly City Spotlight: Winchester

Winchester

Alfred the Great

Former capital city of ancient England, Winchester is located in the county of Hampshire in the South of England by the River Itchen.  Once the Seat of King Alfred the Great, Winchester offers historical buildings, monuments and museums galore. Rich in heritage from the Great Hall to its medieval Westgate there is much to explore and plenty of attractions to choose from.  2014 is a great time to visit with this year marking 100 years since the outbreak of the Great War, and various events set to take place in Winchester and throughout the surrounding areas to commemorate this historic event.

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