Coleraine Town Hall
OpenStreetMap of Coleraine
|Irish grid reference||C844328|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Postcode district||BT51, BT52|
Coleraine ( /koʊlˈreɪn/ kohl-RAYN; from Irish : Cúil Rathain [ˌkuːlʲ ˈɾˠahɪnʲ] , 'nook of the ferns'  ) is a town and civil parish near the mouth of the River Bann in County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. It is 55 miles (89 km) northwest of Belfast and 30 miles (48 km) east of Derry, both of which are linked by major roads and railway connections. It is part of Causeway Coast and Glens district.
Coleraine had a population of 24,634 people in the 2011 Census.  The North Coast (Coleraine and Limavady) area has the highest property prices in Northern Ireland, higher even than those of affluent South Belfast. 
Coleraine during the day is busy but relatively quiet at night. Much of the nightlife in the area centres on the nearby seaside resort towns of Portrush and Portstewart, with the three towns forming a combined visitor area known as “The Triangle”.
Coleraine is home to one of the largest Polish communities in Northern Ireland.
Coleraine is at the lowest bridgeable point of the River Bann, where the river is 90 metres (300 ft) wide. The town square is called 'The Diamond' and is the location of Coleraine Town Hall. 
St. Patrick's Church of Ireland is in the town centre, with churches for other denominations all within walking distance.
The University of Ulster campus was built in the 1960s and brought a theatrical space to the town in the form of the Riverside Theatre.
The town has a large catchment area and is designated as a "major growth area" in the Northern Ireland Development Strategy.
Coleraine has a long history of settlement. The Mesolithic site at Mount Sandel, which dates from approximately 5935 BC  is some of the earliest evidence of human settlement in Ireland. 
The 9th-century Hagiography Tripartite Life of Saint Patrick records how the town got its name. When Patrick arrived in the neighbourhood, he was received with great honour and hospitality by the local chieftain, Nadslua, who offered him a piece of ground on which to build a church. The spot was next to the river Bann and was overgrown with ferns, which were being burned by some boys to amuse themselves. This incident led to the area being called Cúil Raithin ("nook of ferns"), which was later anglicised as Colrain, Colerain and Coleraine. It was translated by Colgan into Latin as Secessus Filicis.
The town was one of the two urban communities developed by the London Companies in County Londonderry in the Plantation of Ulster at the start of the 17th century. The slightly skewed street pattern of Coleraine's town centre is the legacy of that early exercise in town planning, along with traces of the lines of the ramparts that provided the Plantation town with its defences.
During the War of the Two Kings (1689–91) Coleraine was a centre of Protestant resistance to the rule of James II. Richard Hamilton's Irish Army made an attempt to seize the town but was repulsed. The Protestants were forced to abandon the town shortly afterwards and withdrew to Derry. Later the same year, following the failed Siege of Derry, Sir Charles Carney and his Jacobite garrison fled the town on receiving news of the advance of Percy Kirke's Enniskillen forces and the landing at Carrickfergus of Marshal Schomberg. The Williamites controlled Coleraine for the remainder of the war.
With some industrialisation, the expansion of the river port, and the development of the railway, the town expanded significantly throughout the 19th century and into the early part of the 20th century, especially after the Second World War. The population doubled due to a number of factors: major industrial development on extensive suburban sites; the decision to site the New University of Ulster (now known as the Ulster University) in the town; the expansion of commerce; and the development of sporting and recreational facilities. There has been a steady expansion of the urban area from the mid 20th-century compact town of less than 2.25 sq mi (5.8 km2), to the present much more dispersed area of about 7 sq mi (18 km2). Since 1980 growth has continued but at a slightly more modest pace. In the twenty years to 2001 the town's population increased by 22% to approximately 25,000 but the rate of increase fell from 12% in the 1980s to 8% in the 1990s.  : 13
During the Troubles in Northern Ireland, a total of 13 people were killed in or near Coleraine. Ten of these people were killed in two separate car bomb explosions, although in very different circumstances.
On 12 June 1973, the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) detonated a car bomb on Railway Road, with inadequate warning. Six Protestant civilians, all in their 60s and 70s, were killed.  The second most fatal incident occurred on 2 October 1975 but in this case, all four victims were members of the loyalist paramilitary group the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF), killed when their own bomb went off as they travelled through Farrenlester near Coleraine.  A third bombing occurred on 13 November 1992 when the IRA detonated a large van bomb in the town centre. Although extensive property damage was caused, which resulted in several major buildings being demolished, no one was killed.  Coleraine Town Hall required major structural work, and was not reopened until August 1995. 
The other three people to be killed in Coleraine were all shot by loyalist paramilitaries. One was Danny Cassidy, a Sinn Féin electoral worker who was killed by the Ulster Freedom Fighters  and the other two were also civilians with no paramilitary connections. One was killed by the UVF  and the other by a non-specific loyalist group. 
The poetical illustration The Coleraine Salmon Leap by Letitia Elizabeth Landon, in Fisher's Drawing Room Scrap Book, 1836, refers to an abundance of salmon in the river here in those times, and to a considerable sport derived therefrom. It accompanies an engraving of a painting of the salmon leap by Thomas Mann Baynes. 
Coleraine was the headquarters of the former Coleraine Borough Council, before this was amalgamated in 2015 to form the Causeway Coast and Glens District Council, which is now based in the former Coleraine Borough Council headquarters.
The Borough Council area together with the neighbouring district of Limavady, forms the East Londonderry constituency for elections to the Westminster Parliament and Northern Ireland Assembly, despite some of the borough being in County Antrim.
In 2014, the residents elected 3 Democratic Unionist Party, 2 Ulster Unionist Party, 1 Progressive Unionist Party, 1 Northern Ireland Conservatives and 1 Social Democratic and Labour Party councillors.
Coleraine is near the Causeway Coast tourist route, attracting over 2 million annual visitors.  A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Giant's Causeway, is a 25-minute bus ride away. The distillery village of Bushmills is served by buses from the town and there is a narrow-gauge steam train running in the summer from Bushmills to the Giant's Causeway. Also north of Coleraine is the scenic coastal town of Portstewart, with a sandy beach and coastal walks. Portrush is part of the Borough.
North-west of Coleraine lies the small village of Castlerock, with a beach which is essentially a continuation of the beach at Portstewart, separated by the mouth of the River Bann. Also nearby is the beach at Benone Strand and Mussenden Temple, built by Frederick Augustus Hervey, an 18th-century Anglican bishop atop a precipitate cliff and overlooking County Donegal in one direction and Scotland in another. The bishop's residence, Downhill House, which is managed by the National Trust, fell into disrepair after the Second World War. 
Coleraine experiences a maritime climate with cool summers and relatively mild winters. The nearest official Met Office weather station for which online records are available is at nearby Coleraine University,  about 1 mile (1.6 km) north of the town centre. However, observations ceased a few years ago and the nearest current Met Office weather observing station is at Movanagher, about 12 miles (19 km) to the south. Rainfall at Coleraine typically peaks at over 100 mm (3.9 in) during the month of October. The driest month is May, with an average of under 60 mm (2.4 in).  On average, 173 days of the year will report at least 1 mm (0.039 in) of rain, ranging from 18 days in January to 11 days during June. The following table summarises temperature averages sampled between 1971 and 2000.
|Climate data for Ulster University, at 23 m.a.s.l. |
(Weather station 1 mile (2 km) to the North of Coleraine town centre)
|Average high °C (°F)||7.3|
|Average low °C (°F)||1.6|
|Source: yr.no |
The east side of the town is distinguished by Mountsandel Forest, which contains the Mount Sandel fort, an ancient site which has been claimed as the oldest site of human settlement in Ireland. Here wooden houses dating from about 7000 BC were uncovered.   The fort can be accessed via Mountsandel forest, the closest entrance being the side near the Coleraine Courthouse. There is another fort about two miles south of Mountsandel near the small village of Loughan.
Coleraine has a variety of educational institutions at all levels.
The local schools include:
Coleraine is the location of a University of Ulster campus and houses the university's administration buildings. It is the original campus of what was the New University of Ulster (established in 1968) which merged with the former Ulster Polytechnic at Jordanstown just north of Belfast in 1984 to form the present-day institution. The university was placed in the top five of UK universities by the 2014 Research Excellence Framework for its law, biomedical, and humanities programs.  The Causeway Institute is a College of Further and Higher Education based in Coleraine, with another campus in nearby Ballymoney.
Coleraine railway station opened on 4 December 1855 and shares facilities with the town's Ulsterbus bus depot. Passenger service is delivered via the Belfast-Derry railway line along the scenic shore of Lough Foyle and the Coleraine-Portrush railway line branch line. The Belfast-Derry railway line is to be upgraded to facilitate more frequent trains and improvements to the permanent way such as track and signalling to enable faster services.
The railway station was closed for goods traffic on 4 January 1965. 
Coleraine itself contains Coleraine Rugby Club, established in 1921, Coleraine F.C., established in 1927 and currently in the IFA Premiership and CLG Eoghan Rua established in 1957. Coleraine is one of the hosting towns for the Milk Cup.
Coleraine is part of the circuit for the North West 200, a series of motorcycle road races organised by the Coleraine and District Motor Club.
Coleraine Bowling Club is a lawn bowls club on Lodge Road and was founded in 1903. Coleraine is one of the most successful teams in the NIPBA and Irish bowling, with 64 titles on the honours list. The Bannsiders have claimed two Irish Bowling Association Senior Challenge Cup victories, in 1921 and 2013. Coleraine have also provided a number of international players and Commonwealth Games representatives, most notably Victor Dallas and Roy Fulton.
Coleraine Cricket Club plays in the North West Senior League.
In the wider local area are a number of well-known golf courses, including Castlerock Golf Club, Royal Portrush Golf Club and Portstewart Golf Club.
The Coleraine area has a significant equestrian presence. Of particular interest is RDA Coleraine (Riding for the Disabled Association (Coleraine & District Group), which provides riding opportunities for anyone with a physical and/or learning disability at their £1.75 million RDA Causeway Coast Arena at Castleroe (see website www.rdacoleraine.org). The new arena was funded by SportNI, Coleraine Borough Council, and by donations from the people of the district. The conditions of grant aid included the provision of a first-class sporting arena for RDA, the equestrian fraternity, and other sporting activities. Especially important is the development of The OWLS Sports Club (Opportunities Without Limits), which will coordinate the development of a range of different sporting opportunities for persons with physical and/or learning disabilities, and in many cases their siblings. To facilitate this process SportNI has funded a Sports Development Officer.
Coleraine is classified as a large town (i.e. with a population between 18,000 and 75,000 people).  : 11
On Census day (27 March 2011) there were 24,634 people living in Coleraine, accounting for 1.36% of the NI total.  Of these:
Coleraine, as a town name, exists in other countries. In the United States, for example, several places are named after Coleraine, including two townships in Ohio: Colerain Township, Belmont County and Colerain Township, Hamilton County.  
In 1853, a surveyor named Lindsay Clarke was working on a township called Bryans Creek Crossing in Victoria, Australia. He renamed the town Coleraine. 
International projects, under the guidance of Coleraine Borough Council, include the Zomba Action Project – a charity founded in 2003 to provide aid to the municipality of Zomba in southern Malawi. The region was chosen due to the historical connections between the Presbyterian and Catholic churches and Malawi, sustained by a number of specific local contacts. Donations have been used to fund computers, education, medical and other projects. 
Coleraine is twinned with French town La Roche-sur-Yon. 
County Antrim is one of six counties of Northern Ireland and one of the thirty-two counties of Ireland. Adjoined to the north-east shore of Lough Neagh, the county covers an area of 3,086 square kilometres (1,192 sq mi) and has a population of about 618,000. County Antrim has a population density of 203 people per square kilometre or 526 people per square mile. It is also one of the thirty-two traditional counties of Ireland, as well as part of the historic province of Ulster.
County Londonderry, also known as County Derry, is one of the six counties of Northern Ireland, one of the thirty two counties of Ireland and one of the nine counties of Ulster. Before the partition of Ireland, it was one of the counties of the Kingdom of Ireland from 1613 onward and then of the United Kingdom after the Acts of Union 1800. Adjoining the north-west shore of Lough Neagh, the county covers an area of 2,118 km2 (818 sq mi) and today has a population of about 247,132.
Limavady is a market town in County Londonderry, Northern Ireland, with Binevenagh as a backdrop. Lying 17 miles (27 km) east of Derry and 14 miles (23 km) southwest of Coleraine, Limavady had a population of 12,032 people at the 2011 Census. In the 40 years between 1971 and 2011, Limavady's population nearly doubled. Limavady is within Causeway Coast and Glens Borough.
Bushmills is a village on the north coast of County Antrim, Northern Ireland. Bushmills had a population of 1,295 in the 2011 Census. It is located 60 miles (97 km) from Belfast, 11 miles (18 km) from Ballycastle and 9 miles (14 km) from Coleraine. The village owes its name to the River Bush and to a large watermill that was built there in the early 17th century. It is home to the Old Bushmills Distillery, which produces Irish whiskey, and is near the Giant's Causeway.
Portrush is a small seaside resort town on the north coast of County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It neighbours the resort of Portstewart. The main part of the old town, including the railway station as well as most hotels, restaurants and bars, is built on a 1 mile (1.6 km)–long peninsula, Ramore Head. It had a population of 6,454 people at the 2011 Census. In the off-season, Portrush is a dormitory town for the nearby campus of the University of Ulster at Coleraine.
Portstewart is a small town in County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. It had a population of 8,003 people in the 2011 Census. It is a seaside resort neighbouring Portrush. Its harbour and scenic coastal paths form an Atlantic promenade leading to a two-miles beach, popular with holidaymakers in summer and surfers year-round.
East Londonderry is a parliamentary constituency in the United Kingdom House of Commons. The current MP is Gregory Campbell of the DUP.
The Ulster Transport Authority (UTA) ran rail and bus transport in Northern Ireland from 1948 until 1966.
Ballymoney is a town and civil parish in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. It is within the Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council area. The civil parish of Ballymoney is situated in the historic baronies of Dunluce Upper and Kilconway in County Antrim, as well as the barony of North East Liberties of Coleraine in County Londonderry. It had a population of 10,402 people at the 2011 Census.
Coleraine Borough Council was a local council mainly in County Londonderry and partly in County Antrim in Northern Ireland. It merged with Ballymoney Borough Council, Limavady Borough Council and Moyle District Council in May 2015 under local government reorganisation in Northern Ireland to become Causeway Coast and Glens District Council
Castlerock is a seaside village in County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. It is five miles west of Coleraine, and part of Causeway Coast and Glens district. It is very popular with summer tourists, with numerous apartment blocks and two caravan sites. Castlerock Golf Club has both 9-hole and 18-hole links courses bounded by the beach, the River Bann and the Belfast to Derry railway line. The village had a population of 1,287 people at the 2011 census, and is where near by village Articlave F.C play their home games.
Kilrea is a village, townland and civil parish in County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. It gets its name from the ancient church that was located near to where the current Church of Ireland is located on Church Street looking over the town. It is near the River Bann, which marks the boundary between County Londonderry and County Antrim. In the 2011 Census it had a population of 1,678 people. It is situated within Causeway Coast and Glens district.
The Coleraine–Portrush line is a short branch railway line in Northern Ireland between the town of Coleraine in County Londonderry and the seaside resort of Portrush in County Antrim. The line, which is operated by Northern Ireland Railways, has two intermediate halts and connects to the main Belfast–Derry line at Coleraine.
Portrush railway station is the terminus of the Coleraine-Portrush railway line and serves the seaside town of Portrush, County Antrim, Northern Ireland.
The Ulster University at Coleraine is a campus of Ulster University in Coleraine, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. It houses the administrative headquarters of the university and is the most traditional in outlook, with a focus on science and the humanities. It was founded in 1968 as the New University of Ulster and was later known as the University of Ulster at Coleraine until October 2014 when it was rebranded with the rest of the university to be known as Ulster University at Coleraine. The Coleraine campus is situated on the banks of the River Bann in Coleraine with views to the Causeway Coast and the hills of County Donegal to the West.
Ulster railways, present and past, include:
Causeway Coast and Glens is a local government district covering most of the northern part of Northern Ireland. It was created on 1 April 2015 by merging the Borough of Ballymoney, the Borough of Coleraine, the Borough of Limavady and the District of Moyle. The local authority is Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council.
The 3 ft narrow gauge Portstewart Tramway operated tramway services between Portstewart and Portstewart railway station at Cromore from 1882 to 1926.
Coleraine Town Hall is a municipal structure in The Diamond in Coleraine, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. The town hall, which was the headquarters of Coleraine Borough Council, is a Grade B1 listed building.
Portstewart Town Hall is a municipal structure in The Crescent, Portstewart, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. The structure, which has been closed to the public since December 2019, is a Grade B2 listed building.