Phil Coulter conferred with Freedom of Derry and Strabane
07 October 2022
Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council Councillor Sandra Duffy has led the tributes to Phil Coulter at a ceremony to confer him with the Freedom of the City and District at the Guildhall.
The world renowned musician, songwriter and record producer joins names such John Hume, Winston Churchill and former Catholic and Church of Ireland Bishops Edward Daly and James Mehaffey in receiving the Council’s highest accolade.
Mayor Duffy said the title was a fitting recognition of his career in the music business.
“Phil Coulter has enjoyed a quite remarkable career that has seen him compose, produce and record music of international acclaim for over six decades,” she said.
“He has a worldwide reputation in the music business and composed some of the best known songs of all time but he has never forgotten his home city and remains very much a son of the town we all love so well.
“He is Derry’s own hit maker and I am delighted that we as a Council have had the opportunity to honour and thank him for the joy he has given so many people through his music.”
The decision to confer the Freedom of the City and District on Phil Coulter was made at a Council meeting in March of this year.
The motion was unanimously agreed that he receive the honour in recognition of his internationally acclaimed career in music.
The Freedom of the City and District is a way of recognising and expressing gratitude for outstanding service and contribution to life in our local area.
Phil Coulter was born in Derry in 1942 and went on to study at St Columb’s College and Queen’s University Belfast.
He has won five Ivor Novello awards and 23 platinum, 39 gold and 52 silver discs.
His song The Town I Loved So Well is widely considered to be the unofficial anthem of the city.
On Saturday he will be joined by up to 2,000 singers who are attending the 10th City of Derry International Choir Festival for a special rendition of the song in Ebrington Square.