Olympic torch to cross peace bridge

Kathleen Irvine (left) passes Lisa Hickson the Olympic Flame outside of Carrickfergus Castle (LOCOG/PA)

Kathleen Irvine (left) passes Lisa Hickson the Olympic Flame outside of Carrickfergus Castle (LOCOG/PA)

First published in National News © by

The Olympic torch will cross the peace bridge in Londonderry in a symbol of cross-community reconciliation in Northern Ireland.

The link was opened relatively recently between a disused army barracks in a mainly unionist part of the city and its largely nationalist centre.

The threat from dissident republicans in the area remains high, with police reiterating the need for public vigilance across Northern Ireland at the weekend and describing an attack on officers in Londonderry on Saturday as attempted murder.

Derry will be the UK City of Culture in 2013 and has recovered from years of high unemployment to build itself as the regional centre for arts in the North West. It will host Monday's evening celebration in St Columb's Park.

The day will also feature breathtaking seascapes, with the Giant's Causeway and Carrick a Rede rope bridge among scenic highlights.

The torch is on a five-day journey around Northern Ireland and Dublin as a token of closer Anglo/Irish ties following the Queen's visit there last year.

It will arrive in London next month as the highlight of the opening ceremony.

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