The Taoiseach has thrown his support behind Derry's bid to become the UK City of Culture in 2013.
Brian Cowen made his comments as final preparations are put to the bid which will face competition from Birmingham, Norwich and Sheffield who are also vying for the title.
in supporting the bid The Taoiseach said Derry and its hinterland have a rich and varied cultural history adding that In troubled times, the city demonstrated a real spirit and a drive to overcome adversity.
He said that spirit has been harnessed by the entire community in supporting the City of Culture bid.
Hinting at the obvious benefits for Donegal if the bid was successful Brian Cowen said Derry and the wider North West region will have a golden opportunity to showcase the vibrancy of its cultural life, and its enduring warmth and vitality, to a huge audience.
On Tuesday, Northern Ireland's first and deputy first ministers also gave their support to the bid.