Rye’s Waterloo Expert

Rye’s Waterloo Expert

Chris Viner and a partial glimpse of  battle scenes leading up to Waterloo.

What a spellbinding account of the Battle of Waterloo we received last Thursday, October 8th at our East Street Museum, from a recognized world expert on Napoleon, who happens to live in Rye.

Chris Viner (Soldiers of Rye, on the High Street) has spent a lifetime studying Napoleon’s life and is an elected member of the International Napoleonic Society, but this particular talk was less about the man and more about the mechanics of his last great battle. Step by step, Chris walked the audience through the progress of the conflict. At six points in the fighting, decisions by men in the field — men other than Wellington or Bonaparte — did or could have changed the outcome of the battle entirely. He described the many acts of bravery, good soldiering and just plain luck (good and bad) that led to Wellington’s victory.  He gave his audience plenty to think about when it comes to the multiplicity of factors determining the outcomes of battles and the longterm effects of an outcome.

A display of Chris’ model soldiers was the centrepiece of Rye Museum’s popular special exhibition on the 200th anniversary of Waterloo, which was open for the full two weeks of the Rye Festival and prompted increased footfall at the shop where Chris creates his military models. The exhibition can still be seen weekends through October, after which the East Street Museum closes for the season.

Please note: Thursday is the new default night for talks at East Street.

First posted in Featured, Invasion Coast, Notable People on 12th October 2015
Last updated: 13th October 2015