A new website developed by Waterloo 200, the National Army Museum and Culture24 will provide an online focus for the 2015 bi-centenary of the Battle of Waterloo
Peter Snow says it “prompts more controversy and fascination than almost any other in world history” and one of its champions, Major General Sir Evelyn Webb-Carter, describes it as “a defining moment in European History”. Now the Battle of Waterloo will have its 200th anniversary commemorated in style with a new website backed by the Heritage Lottery Fund.
© National Army Museum
The famous Battle, which saw the forces of Napoleon Bonaparte defeated on the fields of Waterloo in north-west Europe by an Anglo Allied army led by the Duke of Wellington and a Prussian Army led by Field Marshall Blücher, heralded nearly half a century of relative peace in Europe.
It has since become a keystone of British history and, for many, a symbol of national identity. But the 1815 battle remains misunderstood by many ahead of its bicentenary year in 2015.
Led by Waterloo 200, the organisation set up to promote the bicentenary of the battle, and partnered by the National Army Museum and Culture24, the new website will become an online resource enabling people of all ages and backgrounds to discover more about the history of the complex battle and the people involved. It will offer a range of educational resources for both formal and informal learners.
The site will also display 200 artefacts from the battle during the UK’s 2015 Battle of Waterloo bicentenary commemorations. Many of the objects have never been seen by the public.
“No other single battle in British history has captivated so many people and provoked such intense discussion,” adds Snow. “Waterloo brought a decisive end to a quarter century of warfare at a level unparalleled since the barbarian invasion 1,000 years earlier.
“It set the seal on a balance of power in Europe that was to give the continent a century of relative calm. It is a magnificent step forward that the HLF has provided the resources to help commemorate Waterloo on the scale it deserves.”
Major General Sir Evelyn Webb-Carter, the Chairman of Waterloo 200, believes the funding will “make it possible for a dream to come true.”
“Waterloo was a defining moment in European history and it’s important that more people recognise this,” he says.
“This dynamic resource will be a valuable and easily accessible aid to teachers, students and the public alike so that more about the battle and the people who fought in it, is understood.”
Anra Kennedy, Culture24's Content and Partnerships Director, sees the site as "a wonderful opportunity to create a resource of lasting significance on a subject that so deserves attention".
"The partnership behind the project, combining historical, museological
and digital expertise, will ensure this brand new collection and its rich supporting information inspire and inform audiences for years to come," she says.
- Find out more about the 2015 commemorations at www.waterloo200.org
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