The North is just a shorter way to refer to Northern Ireland

I cannot understand why people get uptight when nationalists refer to Northern Ireland as the North, the most recent example being Gemma Weir ('˜Letter's signatories show contempt and disdain by not saying Northern Ireland,' December 14).

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 19th December 2017, 3:08 am
Updated Tuesday, 19th December 2017, 3:16 am
Letter to the editor
Letter to the editor

People have always resorted to the shortest form of speech in the interests of brevity.

It is why local people refer to Sixmilecross as the Cross, Toomebridge as Toome, Newtownards as Ards, Plumbridge as the Plum, Carrickfergus as Carrick, etc, etc.

I would claim that the majority of unionists and indeed many nationalists refer to the Republic of Ireland as the South, even when they are referring to Donegal, part of which is as far north as anywhere in Northern Ireland.

It is the same with Christian names. When last did we hear Pat Jennings being referred to as Patrick; probably not since the day he was baptised.

Of course the proper name, Northern Ireland, should be used in official documents, of which the 200 signature letter should not be classed as being in that category.

What a utopian place Northern Ireland would be if all our political problems were solved with the exception of how we refer to the place in everyday speech.

Mr A Thompson, Dungannon