Belgrade (Beograd) is the capital of Serbia, and has a population of around 1.6 million. It is situated in South-Eastern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula, at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers. It is one of the oldest cities in Europe and has since ancient times been an important focal point for traffic, an intersection of the roads of Eastern and Western Europe.
Belgrade is the capital of Serbian culture, education, science and economy. As a result of its tumultuous history, Belgrade has for centuries been home to many nationalities, with Serbs of the Orthodox Christian religion making up the majority of the population (90%). The official language is Serbian, while visitors from abroad can use English to communicate.
Coventry was twinned with Belgrade in 1957.
Belgrade was, like Coventry, rebuilt after WWII, but this was certainly not the first time the city had been destroyed. The City of Old Belgrade had been fought over by innumerable nations and had been partially destroyed 38 times.
Although twinned with Belgrade in 1957, the link actually goes back to 1953 when the Yugoslav Ambassador visited Coventry and offered a gift of timber from his native country for use in the new Civic Theatre, which when finished was named The Belgrade Theatre.
Built on the site of an ancient stronghold, Belgrade means “white fortress