Luhansk – the capital of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic – had a feel of a deeply-forgotten Soviet style provincial town. The city’s origins go back to the 18th century when a British metalworks magnate Charles Gascogne founded a factory here to replicate the riches of his fellow British industrialist in nearby Donetsk. After WWII, the city was renamed into Voroshilovgrad and was a minor industrial center in the Soviet Union. It switched back to Lugansk only after the collapse of the USSR. The city endured heavy fighting and shelling during the war in 2014.