Over three days at the end of April, a group of Old Bedfordians and friends of the School visited the battlefields of Agincourt and Waterloo.
It was fascinating to learn about the unexpected victory for King Henry V against the larger French army at Agincourt and how the use of the English and Welsh archers made such a difference to the victory. The weather prior to the Battle in 1415 was not good and the going underfoot was very heavy – and as the party from Bedford stood on the battlefield with the wind and the rain battering us we felt great sympathy with the French knights in their heavy armour who struggled through the thick mud.
Moving on to Waterloo and standing at the top of the Lion’s Mound Memorial looking out over the peaceful rolling fields, it was difficult to believe that just 200 hundred years ago this was the scene of a bloody battle! According to Wellington, the battle was “the nearest-run thing you ever saw in your life.” But for the arrival of the Prussian Army, it might very well have had a different outcome.
The whole trip was a great mixture of the historical as well as the social and in the evenings the group enjoyed discussing the day’s events and sampling the local cuisine. We were delighted to be joined at dinner by a number of OBs who live in and around Brussels.
Thank you to our guide Philip Pearce and the team at Anglia Tours for their help in making this trip such a success. We are already looking at ideas for similar trips in the future so do keep a lookout – they are always interesting and enjoyable.