Visiting Italian students find Derry ‘friendly, welcoming and beautiful’

A group of Italian students who completed an International GCSE geography project in Derry described the city as ‘welcoming, friendly and beautiful’.

Students from Monza who recently completed an IGCSE geography project in Derry, pictured with teachers Filena Spadavecchia and Norberto Giamberduca and North West Academy of English teacher, Jonathan Crockett.
Students from Monza who recently completed an IGCSE geography project in Derry, pictured with teachers Filena Spadavecchia and Norberto Giamberduca and North West Academy of English teacher, Jonathan Crockett.

The pupils from Monza, just outside Milan, were in Derry for 10 days and focused on migration, urban development, tourism and green spaces.

They surveyed over 300 people on various topics as part of the project which was facilitated by the North West Academy of English. And while they had a clear educational purpose, they also had a great time.

“What I enjoyed most was going to Brooke Park and St. Columb’s Park to ask people questions because in Derry people are very kind and always ready to help you.

“That is what I admire about the population of this city,” said student Sara Teruzzi.

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Another pupil, Marco, said: “I learned things such as how the three bridges got their names and the history of Brooke Park.

“What I liked most was when we left school to ask local people their opinions.”

Melissa found Derry a ‘very welcoming’ city.

She said: “Derry is a well cared for city and its citizens are very welcoming to tourists. All the lessons were interesting and I liked how the teacher encouraged us.

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“I’ve clarified my ideas about migration in Derry which was the topic for my geography coursework.”

Gabriele was impressed with the lack of cars.

“We figured out that pedestrianisation is a great way to improve footfall, helping businesses in the pedestrianised streets, and bringing out people from the non-pedestrianised areas.

“I really enjoyed the people, very chill and friendly, and, in particular, I really enjoyed the history of the town and the region.”

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Valeria agreed: “I found out lots of things about Derry, its parks, and how people use them, what they like and what they don’t.

“I also really enjoyed Derry’s people, how much they are nice to you and helpful.”

Umberto was struck by the beauty of the city.

“I have found out that tourism in Derry has increased in the last number of years and that this is bringing a lot of benefits such as cultural exchange and the improvement of the economy.

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“I enjoyed Derry a lot because it is very peaceful and relaxing due to the presence of a lot of green spaces and very beautiful places such as the Peace Bridge.”

Alessandro enjoyed Derry’s culinary delights.

“I liked two things in particular. The first was the perfume of sweet and salty foods around the city, and the second was the small sculptures on the sidewalks representing shells, algae and starfish.”

Anna Meroni concluded: “I really liked this experience.

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“I learned some new things about tourism in Derry, how this has changed over recent years, and the benefits it has brought.

“The people were really nice and friendly. The city was beautiful and I really liked my visit to Derry.”

The group returned to Lombardy on Tuesday.