New Discovery Made At Battle Of Waterloo Site

Archaeologists, injured military veterans and serving personnel joined forces to make form a seventy-strong ‘Waterloo Uncovered’ archaeological team.

The team will make excavations at Waterloo, where Wellington famously defeated Napoleon, for the third year in a row.

The focus will be a farm that the British successfully defended throughout the Battle in June 1815 against attacks from Napoleon’s armies.

Archaeologists, injured military veterans and serving personnel joined forces to make form a seventy-strong ‘Waterloo Uncovered’ archaeological team.

The team will make excavations at Waterloo, where Wellington famously defeated Napoleon, for the third year in a row.

The focus will be a farm that the British successfully defended throughout the Battle in June 1815 against attacks from Napoleon’s armies.

In June 1815, 1500 British soldiers held out all day at Hougoumont Farm against superior numbers of Napoleon’s troops.

Each veteran has experienced physical or mental health problems and being on a dig is intended to help. One member, having served in Afghanistan, has suffered nightmares and even considered suicide. He said:

“It helps me being round other veterans I suppose as well and I’m learning, getting a bit of skill at something I never thought I would do.”

Until now it was believed that Napoleon’s soldiers only entered one part of Hougomont only, but new evidence suggests that a walled garden was also breached.

This year for the first time the British are being joined by a Dutch military contingent.

Moos Raaijmakers, a Dutch Army Warrant Officer, said:

“I think it’s good to get in touch with your past especially for the Dutch because we had troops here as well. We got many units with Waterloo were in Quatre Bras 1815 on their banners and on their flags. This is the start of our Army two hundred years ago.”

There’s still much to learn about a twelve-hour battle that ended twenty years of war in Europe.

The ‘Waterloo Uncovered’ archaeologists are planning to return next summer. They have been granted permission to continue their work ath the site for another five years, but this duration may even be extended in the future.