First Derry Presbyterian Church and The Blue Coat School Visitor Centre
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First Derry Presbyterian Church.
Some time after the lifting of the siege of Derry in 1689, a new Presbyterian meeting house was built within the walls, on the site that continues to be occupied by the present church. To assist with the building, Queen Mary provided a large donation in recognition of the sacrifices of Presbyterians in the defence of Derry.
The current First Derry Presbyterian Church was first opened in 1780, and is believed to be on the site of an earlier Presbyterian Church of 1690. The foundation stone of this earlier building can be found above the centre door, inscribed with the Roman numerals M.D.C.X.C (1690). In 1828 the pediment and cornices of Dungiven sandstone was added.
The church has recently been re-opened following a programme of works that has totally renovated the building. Having been closed for a period of eight years, the church is once again being used as a place of worship.
Adjoining the Church is the refurbished Blue Coat School, now home to the The Blue Coat School Visitor Centre. This new facility tells the history behind the Church, along with the history of Presbyterians in the city (and beyond) and the role they played in the great siege.