Feeny

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For the fictional Boy Meets World character, see George Feeny.
Feeny
Irish: Na Fíneadha
Feeny.jpg
Feeny is located in Northern Ireland
Feeny
Feeny
 Feeny shown within Northern Ireland
Population 542 (2001)
Irish grid reference C627055
   – Belfast  58 miles 
District Limavady
County County Londonderry
Country Northern Ireland
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town LONDONDERRY
Postcode district BT47
Dialling code 028, +44 28
EU Parliament Northern Ireland
UK Parliament East Londonderry
NI Assembly East Londonderry
List of places
UK
Northern Ireland
County Londonderry

Coordinates: 54°53′35″N 7°01′19″W / 54.893°N 7.022°W / 54.893; -7.022

Feeny (from Irish Na Fíneadha, meaning "the woods")[1][2] is a village and townland in County Londonderry, Northern Ireland. It is between Dungiven and Claudy. In the 2001 Census it had a population of 542. Feeny lies just inside the boundary of the Sperrins Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.[3]

Features[edit]

Feeny has a health centre, community centre and Gaelic Athletic Association club. However, it only has a small number of shops.[3] There are three pubs in the village. It has a population of around 675 in 2010.

A community regeneration project has been proposed for the village, funded by the International Fund for Ireland. The project, to be undertaken by Feeny Community Association, involves redeveloping a derelict site in the village centre to commercial premises, three apartments and a community office. This will be alongside an environmental improvement scheme in Main Street, which would create a stronger commercial centre, more jobs, and improve the appearance of the village.[3]

History[edit]

Near the village is the General’s Bridge, the site of the famous ambush by highwayman Shane Crossagh.[4] This is where Sean Crossan held up some British Redcoats by placing wooden cut-out muskets into some bushes.

During the Troubles, off-duty Ulster Defence Regiment soldier James Hood was killed by the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) at his house near Feeny on 4 January 1973.[5]

Politics[edit]

The village lies within the East Derry constituency and is represented by Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) member, Gregory Campbell.

Places of interest[edit]

  • On the outskirts of the village, towards Dungiven, lies four-storey Drumcovitt House which was built over 300 years ago by the Worshipful Company of Fishmongers and is a visible reminder of the Plantation of Ulster period.[4] In 1796 a round ended Georgian front was added to the house. It is now tourist accommodation.[6]
  • Banagher Glen National Nature Reserve is close to the village.[4]
  • Aughlish stone circles and alignments are 3.6 km from Feeny.

Transport[edit]

Feeny has good road links to Limavady (20 km to the north) and Derry (23 km to the northwest), but has limited public transport connections.[3]

Education[edit]

  • St Canice's is the local primary school.[3]

Sport[edit]

Gaelic games are the most popular sports in the area, with St Mary's GAC Banagher (CLG Naomh Mhuire Beannchar) being the local club. Fr McNally Park is the team's grounds. The club's history was published in 1990 by S and B McCloskey and David Hassan.

Demography[edit]

Feeny is classified as a small village or hamlet by the NI Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) (i.e., with population between 500 and 1,000). On Census day (29 April 2001) there were 542 people living in Feeny. Of these:

  • 29.3% were aged under 16 years and 6.6% were aged 60 and over
  • 47.6% of the population were male and 52.4% were female
  • 95.8% were from a Catholic background and 3.7% were from a Protestant background
  • 7.8% of people aged 16–74 were unemployed

For more details see: NI Neighbourhood Information Service

The century of political and religious turmoil in modern-day Northern Ireland has seen the village of Feeny move from a mixed village to being almost exclusively Nationalist.

In the 1911 Census the village recorded 149 inhabitants of whom 64 were from a Protestant background. The village had a demographic that was 57.1% Roman Catholic and 42.9% Protestant.[7] Over the course of the century while the overall population of the village quadrupled in size the minority Protestant population had shrunk to just 20 inhabitants in the 2001 Census. This 39% fall in the Protestant community over the century is the third largest deterioration of a community from either side of Ulster's political divide in any village or district of over one hundred inhabitants behind the sharp declines of the Protestant communities of Derry City and Dungiven Village and marginally higher than the sharpest decline of a Roman Catholic community, experienced in Castlereagh.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Placenames NI
  2. ^ Placenames Database of Ireland
  3. ^ a b c d e "Feeny Settlement Designation". Planning Service - Draft Northern Area Plan 2016. Retrieved 2008-06-22. 
  4. ^ a b c "Feeny". Culture Northern Ireland. Retrieved 2008-06-22. [dead link]
  5. ^ CAIN List of conflict related deaths
  6. ^ "Drumcovitt House". Drumcovitt House website. Retrieved 2008-06-22. 
  7. ^ http://www.census.nationalarchives.ie/pages/1911/Londonderry/Feeny/Feeny_Town__a_/

54°53′N 7°01′W / 54.883°N 7.017°W / 54.883; -7.017