The original site of St Columba’s Monastery
St Augustine’s Church was built in a Gothic style in 1872 is locally known as ‘The wee church on the walls’. Derry is one of the oldest continuously inhabited places in Ireland. St Augustine’s Church is thought to be the original site of the first monastery in Derry founded by St Columba in 546 AD. The monastery was originally surrounded by a circular cashel which constricted it from expanding as the monastery grew in size. A new site for the monastery was chosen about 300 meters away at the present site of the Long Tower. This became known as ‘Temple Mor’. In 1613, the church at the original site was known as ‘The Church of God in the Cittie of Derry’ and was used by the first plantation settlers from England & Scotland. In 1689, during the Siege of Derry, a cannonball was fired into the church’s graveyard containing terms of surrender which were infamously rejected! Its graveyard is worth exploring as it contains many famous and interesting graves.