After a two year absence, the traditional reconstruction of the Battle of Waterloo is back.
Known throughout the world, the Battle of Waterloo shook Europe in 1815.
For the first time since the pandemic struck, the public now has the chance to relive the famous clashes of June 18, 1815 and see Napoleon and Wellington clash on the plain of Mont-Saint-Jean,on the Braine L’Alleud-Waterloo border.
Visitors will be transported back to 1815 thanks to the 1,500 passionate re-enactors who will reconstruct the famous battle.
It all takes place on a sprawling site which houses the Memorial of the Battle of Waterloo 1815 and the last HQ of Napoleon. On 18/19 June, the doors to the French and Allied bivouacs will be open and visitors can see a recreated civilian village and its forgotten trades.
A free shuttle for the public will be available during the opening hours of the bivouacs. It will connect Napoleon’s last HQ to the Hougoumont farm and the Memorial of the Battle of Waterloo 1815. On Saturday, the last shuttle will leave the DQGN at 6pm. On Sundays, the shuttle will also run from 12.30 p.m. to 5pm with the last departure from the DQGN at 5p.m.
While on site you can visit the two museums, including Napoleon’s last headquarters.
This old farm transformed into a museum highlights the events of the famous night of June 17, 1815, thanks to testimonies from civilian and military life. It is also in this place that Napoleon imagined his strategy and the plans of the battle. In an authentic setting, the museum houses objects mainly from the French army, including a copy of the Emperor’s camp bed.
Napoleon’s last Headquarters was a historic building before being turned into a museum. Indeed, the farm has a history of its own, before and after the Napoleonic events. In addition, the farm, its outbuildings and its exteriors are classified as a historical monument.
The museum’s scenography is accessible to adults and children, individually or in groups, with its specificity (deaf and hard of hearing, visually impaired and PMR).
The 2nd museum is the Memorial of the Battle of Waterloo 1815. At the foot of the Butte du Lion and in the heart of the battlefield, the Museum tells you about the battle through numerous visit areas. It includes a giant model of 33m2 and more than 10,000 characters at 1/72 scale represent the battlefield very realistically; a large gallery of more than 70 models in uniform and a film broadcast in 3D audio surround from a large number of digital and interactive devices.
You also have access to the gigantic Panorama canvas of 1912 (110 meters in circumference by 12 meters in height) and the famous Butte du Lion erected from 1824 to 1826 at the presumed location where the Prince of Orange was injured on the 18 June 1815. Climbing its 226 steps offers an exceptional view of the battlefield.
On site, the Allied bivouacs are stationed at the Hougoumont farm, the civilian village at the Butte du Lion and soldiers in uniform offer historical events several times a day.
It all starts on Saturday 18 June. The programme is as follows:
10:00 a.m.: Opening of the bivouacs and the civilian village
6:00 p.m.: Closing of the bivouacs and opening of the battlefield
8:00 p.m.: Re-enactment show
9:45 p.m.: End of the reenactment
00h00: Closing of the site
Sunday 19 June:
9:30 am: Opening of the battlefield
10:30 a.m.: Re-enactment show
12:15 p.m.: End of the reenactment
12:30 p.m.: Opening of the bivouacs and the civilian village
5:00 p.m.: Closing of the bivouacs
Tickets for the 207th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo are available on Ticketmaster.be