The invaluable contribution of Irish soldiers in the final defeat of Napoleon is being commemorated in Enniskillen on Saturday – 200 years after the Battle of Waterloo.
The Co Fermanagh town has been chosen for the special series of events as both the 27th (Inniskilling) Regiment of Foot and the 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoon Guards played vital roles in the brutal 1815 encounter that changed the course of European history.
On defeat, the French Emperor is reputed to have commented: “That regiment with castles on their caps composes of the most obstinate mules I ever saw; they don’t know when they are beaten.”
Paying his own tribute to the Fermanagh-based soldiers, affectionately known as ‘The Skins,’ the Duke of Wellington said: “They saved the centre of my line at Waterloo.”
The commemorations begin at St Macartin’s Cathedral with a religious service taking place at 11am for invited guests.
On conclusion, the guests will make their way to Enniskillen Castle for the ‘Honouring the Inniskillings’ – which will include a narrated outdoor displays by both historical re-enactors and modern day defence forces and various exhibitions.
There will also be performances by band of the Royal Irish Regiment and the Pipes & Drums of the Royal Dragoon Guards.
Afterwards, visitors will are free to browse the Inniskillings Museum and the exhibitions.
Recent acquisitions to the museum’s Waterloo collection will also be unveiled on the day.
Event organisers have carried out extensive research and unearthed a wealth of links with families, on both sides of the Irish border, and secured many artefacts from some noted military figures.